MIAMI - Media is invited to attend the welcoming of the 2014 Marlins Junior RBI Baseball World Series Champions tomorrow, August 12, at 11:30 a.m. at Terminal D in Miami International Airport. Marlins RBI claimed the championship earlier today with an 8-1 victory over Detroit Arsenal Youth Sports & Fitness RBI. The 2014 Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) World Series took place at Globe Life Park in Arlington, home of the Texas Rangers.
"We are very proud of our Marlins Junior RBI team for winning the 2014 World Series," said Marlins President of Baseball Operations, Michael Hill. "Reviving Baseball in the Inner Cities is an important community outreach priority for the Marlins and has resulted in numerous academic scholarships over the years."
The Most Valuable Player award went to starting pitcher James Spatafora, 16, after he held Detroit to one unearned run on two hits with nine strikeouts in 6.1 innings. Spatafora is a longstanding member of the Marlins RBI program and participated in the Jr. RBI Classic during the 2010 MLB All-Star Week in Anaheim. Head coach Mario Rodriguez guided the team to a perfect 6-0 tournament record.
This is the Miami Marlins' fourth overall RBI World Series championship and first in the Junior Baseball Division since 1997. The Marlins RBI program captured a championship in the Senior Baseball Division in 2004 and in the Softball Division in 1999.
The RBI program, which has served approximately two million young people since its inception, is administered by Major League Baseball and is designed to give young people from underserved and diverse communities the opportunity to play baseball and softball, while also encouraging academic achievement and success and teaching the value of teamwork and other important life lessons. There is also a unique offering for RBI athletes, which is their eligibility for scholarships. In the Miami area, seven scholarships have been awarded in the last few years, ranging from $2,500 to $20,000. The most recent recipients were selected just two weeks ago; one of those recipients was on the Senior RBI team that fell short in the tournament this past weekend in Texas.