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A helmet, and a helping hand for Victorino

Sep 4, 2009, 12:16 AM EDT

victorino_090903.jpgWhile David “Lord Helmet” Wright has suddenly become ashamed of his massive brain protector, Shane Victorino is going in the opposite direction.

The Phillies center fielder is giving the fancy new Rawlings helmet a try. Victorino has always kind of looked like a little leaguer anyway in that double-flapped model, so he doesn’t have much to lose.

Then again, the Flyin’ Hawaiian seems to like to do things his own way. And that’s often a good thing. Victorino, for instance, is doing his part to try to help out high school sports in his home state of Hawaii.

According to the New York Times (with thanks to the Sporting News), Victorino has cut a check for $10,000 to help out the Hawaii High School Athletic Association, which faces some tough budget cuts.

The fact that Hawaii is facing problems is not unique to the rest of the country during these times, but Hawaii certainly faces a unique set of circumstances. There are 95 high schools spread across the set of islands, and travel can be difficult and expensive, requiring ferry rides or — if lucky — plane flights.

And with no pro teams and limited college sports options, high school sports play a greater role in the lives of many residents.

Victorino said he felt a need to step up and help. From The Times:

At last count, officials had collected more than $700,000 of their $1.2 million goal, helping the association keep sports seasons going and avoid the prospect of forcing students to pay to play.

“It was almost like an obligation to do that,” Victorino said before a recent Phillies game at Citizens Bank Park. “It tells me something. In Hawaiian culture, everybody’s got each other’s back. I’m not saying that doesn’t happen anywhere else, but it is true in Hawaii. Family is No. 1.”

If enough money is not raised, athletes may be asked to pay their way to competitions, something Victorino said was unimaginable.

“You shouldn’t have to pay to play as a kid,” he said.

  1. Rudy - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:48 AM

    Shane V is a class act. We need more athletes giving back like that. My hats off to him !!

  2. dave - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:53 AM

    all of the phillies players are active in good causes to help out where ever they can.way to go shane and the whole phillies team

  3. Mikey - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:43 AM

    Yeah cause Shane Victorino and the Phillies are the ONLY group of people who contribute to worthy causes. What a puff piece.

  4. dtro - Sep 4, 2009 at 10:41 AM

    Shane Victorino is a d-bag. That’s it and that’s all.

  5. shae - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:24 PM

    in his defense, David Wright stopped wearing the helmet because it didn’t fit him properly. how is he supposed to run the bases properly if he has to worry about the thing flying off? how will it protect him from a ryan church type concussion #2 injury if it’s lying on the ground by first base or flies off during the slide into second. shame on him for not liking a helmet that doesn’t fit.

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