SURPRISE, Ariz. — Royals catcher Salvador Perez is donating $1 million to the Urban Youth Academy, a 21-acre development of playing fields and other park amenities near downtown Kansas City, Missouri.
The news Wednesday came one day after Perez signed a $52.5 million, five-year contract that will keep him with Kansas City through the 2021 season. It also coincided with a City Council committee vote to endorse more than $2 million in city funds toward the $7 million first phase.
Other funding has been supplied by the new MLB-MLBPA joint youth development initiative.
Perez, who will have a field named after him, said he wanted to donate to the project to give back to Kansas City. The Royals signed him as a 16-year-old prospect out of Venezuela, and he’s become a fan favorite while helping the franchise to the World Series title last year.