PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — The Pittsburgh Pirates collected gently used baseball equipment on Friday to donate to young players in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela.

It was all inspired by a local 14-year-old boy.

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A steady stream of cars pulled up with little league leaders, coaches and parents bringing bins and bags full of baseball equipment. Kids outgrow their equipment and the rules often change for baseball bats.

That’s why Clark Ehman found so much equipment from him and his brother in his garage last year.

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

“This was quarantine, so I had a lot of free time. I was like, this can be put to good use,” Clark said. “So I thought it would be a good idea to start a donation project, and I never figured that it would grow to be this big.”

The freshman at Pittsburgh Obama Academy collected 450 bats and 770 gloves, in addition to lots of other equipment. He called the Pirates to ask if they could help ship it and distribute it in the Dominican Republic.

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Joel Gray with the Pirates knew it was a home run when he heard Clark’s pitch.

“I was amazed,” Gray said. “I was kind of piqued. It was on a video conference so I was like, ‘Are this kid’s parents around?’ He really thought out the whole presentation. It kind of blew me away.”

The Pirates are going to ship at least 20 big containers of the used equipment to the Dominican Republic and Venezuela to go to the kids in the neighborhoods around their Pirates Academies.

Clark chose the Dominican Republic because of all the MLB players from there and because of the Pirates Academy.

“I figured that would be the perfect place to send that equipment because there are a lot of younger players down there,” he said.

Amber Cahill with the Brookline Little League dropped off equipment and said, “It’s important to get the game to everybody and especially for those not able to get equipment on their own. It’s not being used by us so it’s great to be able to have the kids have good equipment and use it and enjoy baseball just like we do.”

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Kristine Sorensen