For Immediate Release: April 12, 2023
KANSAS CITY, MO. (April 12, 2023)—Kansas City Royals Hall of Famer Mike Sweeney will serve as an ambassador for the Blue KC Coaches With Character program for the 2023 Major League Baseball season, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City (Blue KC) announced today.
“Besides parents and grandparents, coaches can have the greatest influence on the lives of those who have been entrusted to them,” said Sweeney. “I’ve been blessed to have some incredible coaches in my life, from Little League all the way to my last years in the big leagues. It’s an honor to be asked to help highlight the Blue KC Coaches with Character program, which is impacting lives for the better, especially in Kansas City, a place that means so much to me.”
Each year, Blue KC teams up with the Kansas City Royals to recognize high school coaches as Blue KC Coaches With Character. The program is intended to spotlight these amazing individuals who, through their leadership on and off the field, are helping to grow amateur sports in the Kansas City area and making our community a better place to live, work and play!
“We are thrilled to have Royals legend, community leader and hometown hero, Mike Sweeney, as an ambassador for our Blue KC Coaches With Character program, which recognizes coaches who are difference-makers in our community,” said Christina Lively, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Blue KC. “The Blue KC Coaches With Character honorees are shining examples of how to win in the game of life and another reason why we can all be proud to call Kansas City home. I know they will enjoy the opportunity to meet Mike and receive the red-carpet treatment from the Royals.”
Blue KC Coaches With Character are nominated online and honored at Kauffman Stadium during pregame festivities at Royals home games as part of a VIP experience that includes throwing out the ceremonial first pitch, a gift package, an interview on 610 Sports Radio, four tickets to the game and a parking pass. Each coach will have an opportunity to meet Mike during the season.
Overall, six individuals will be recognized during the season – one per month. Blue KC will make a $2,500 donation to the C You In The Major Leagues (CYITML) Foundation in honor of each selected coach.
Sweeney spent 13 of his 16 Major League seasons in Kansas City (1995-2007) and was inducted into the Royals Hall of Fame in 2015. He is one of five Royals to be selected to five All-Star Games or more, was Royals Player of the Year three times and ranks among the club’s all-time leaders in many offensive categories. He remains close to the Royals organization, as he is the Special Assistant to Baseball Operations/Leadership Development. In 2023, Sweeney will join the Bally Sports broadcast team on select Royals games.
So much the heart and soul of his teams, Sweeney was the third of four Royals players to ever wear the captain ‘C’ on his jersey from 2003-07. Sweeney set a club record for RBI in a single-season with 144 in 2000. He posted a .340 batting average in 2002, which was the second highest in franchise history. Sweeney ended his career second on the Royals all-time list in home runs (197), slugging percentage (.492) and batting average (.299). He was drafted by the Royals in the 10th round of the 1991 Draft. His final game with the Royals came on October 3, 2010.
Blue KC and the Royals will celebrate the first Blue KC Coaches With Character honoree of 2023 prior to the Royals home game at 6:40 p.m. CT on Tuesday, April 18 at Kauffman Stadium. Tickets for the game against the Texas Rangers can be bought by clicking here.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City, the largest not-for-profit health insurer in Missouri and the only not-for-profit commercial health insurer in Kansas City, has been part of the Kansas City community since 1938. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City provides health coverage services to more than one million residents in the greater Kansas City area, including Johnson and Wyandotte counties in Kansas and 30 counties in Northwest Missouri. Our mission: to provide affordable access to healthcare and to improve the health of our members. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas City is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more information on the company, visit its website at BlueKC.com.