Japanese Teens in Youth Baseball Exchange to be Honored at Fenway Park Tonight

BOSTON, MA - Twelve Japanese teens from Kyoto and Chiba, Japan, will be honored during a pregame ceremony at Fenway Park tonight, Friday, August 1, before the 7:10 p.m. Red Sox-Yankees game. The teens are visiting Boston as part of the Red Sox Foundation's sixth annual Red Sox US-Japan Youth Baseball Exchange, presented by Funai Electric, a program that allows children from Japan and the United States to visit one another's homelands and explore their customs and culture through their shared love of baseball.

The teens and their coaches arrived in Boston on July 26 for a 10-day visit, and are staying with host families in the Boston area. During their trip, they will participate in baseball clinics at Harvard and Northeastern University, and play games against Red Sox Foundation RBI Youth Baseball team members.

Over the past six years, the baseball exchange has also sent Boston teens to Japan to participate in various baseball and cultural activities while living with Japanese host families. 

"Funai Electric is please to support this important program which continues to provide life changing experiences, and reminds us all how much we can share through educational exchanges and through our shared beloved pastime of baseball," said Yoshikazu Uemura, President & CEO of Funai Electric Co., Ltd.

"We thank Funai Electric for their continued support of this program that helps both Japanese and Boston teens share their cultures and their love of baseball," said Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner. "Families in Boston have generously opened their homes to host these children who have traveled so far to learn about American history, culture, and it's national pastime."

This is Funai Electric's sixth year as presenting sponsor of the Red Sox US-Japan Youth Baseball Exchange program, which is coordinated by the Red Sox Foundation. 

"We are particularly proud to host the young Japanese players here in Boston this summer," said Red Sox Foundation Executive Director Gena Borson. "Thanks to Funai, these teens can enjoy America's favorite pastime while they make new friendships we know will last a lifetime."

About Funai Electric Co., Ltd.

Funai Electric Co., Ltd. Founded by Mr. Tetsuro Funai, the company was established in 1961 in Osaka, Japan. Funai Electric Co., Ltd. in Japan is engaged in development/design, manufacture, marketing and distribution of Audio/Visual Products such as LCD TVs, DVD/Blu-ray related Products. Funai also produces Printers and Ink Cartridges. Funai has the manufacturing sites in Japan, China (consignment), Mexico (consignment), Thailand, and Philippines. For more information on Funai Group, please visit: http://www.funai.jp/en/ 

Funai Corporation in the United States was established in 1970 as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Funai Electric Co., Ltd. Funai Corporation, Inc. was reorganized in May 1991, and is engaged in the import, export, servicing, marketing and distribution of Funai products in order to serve customers across United States. For more information, please visit http://www.funai.us/.

About the Red Sox Foundation

The official team charity of the Boston Red Sox, the Red Sox Foundation has distributed over $68 million to support programs serving children and families across New England. The Foundation's efforts are primarily focused on five cornerstone programs: the Red Sox Scholars Program, which provides tutoring, mentoring, enrichment programs and a college scholarship to academically talented but economically disadvantaged Boston public school students; the Red Sox Foundation's RBI and Rookie League youth baseball and softball programs serving more than 2,000 inner city teens each summer; the Red Sox Foundation and Massachusetts General Hospital Home Base Program for veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with combat stress and traumatic brain injury; The Dimock Center in Roxbury, serving more than 40,000 low-income families in Boston's most disadvantaged neighborhoods; and The Jimmy Fund, supporting breakthrough cancer research at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.  

A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the Red Sox Foundation raises funds through special events, corporate sponsorships, and grants. Founded and initially funded by Red Sox Principal Owner John Henry, Chairman Tom Werner, President/CEO Larry Lucchino and their partners, the Red Sox Foundation has won numerous awards for the impact of its innovative programs. In 2010, the Foundation's Red Sox Scholars program was recognized by Major League Baseball with the first-ever "MLB Commissioner's Award for Philanthropic Excellence." In 2009, the Red Sox Foundation was honored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Sports Philanthropy Project with the Patterson Award as the nation's "Best Team Charity in Sports." For more information about the foundation, visit redsoxfoundation.org.