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A-Rod Shoots 1st Spot As a Yankee

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Alex Rodriguez will film his first national TV commercial as a New York Yankee when he shoots a PSA in Florida this week for Major League Baseball and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

A-Rod has been holding off on committing to endorsement deals since coming to New York. He will appear in a TV spot in his Yankees uniform for the first time because of his close ties to the Boys & Girls Clubs—he belonged to the organization as a kid growing up in Miami and remains a major supporter.

The series of spots, which also star players such as Pedro Martinez, Dontrelle Willis, Al Leiter and John Smoltz, will break April 4 on ESPN2 during an Orioles-Red Sox game. The national bilingual, multimedia effort is handled by Major League Baseball Productions, the TV and video production division of MLB, working with McCann-Erickson in New York.

The PSAs are intended to increase awareness of the eight-year alliance between MLB and the Boys & Girls Clubs. As with last year's effort, the spots will humorously show each athlete giving kids baseball tips. The campaign has a radio, Internet and print component.

The spots will air on baseball games on Fox, ESPN and TBS, as well as in stadiums. Spanish-language versions of the A-Rod and Martinez ads will run on ESPN Deportes.

MLBP and McCann-Erickson will create several other national advertising campaigns this year. Spots touting the MLB will continue the tag, "I live for this." One recent commercial in that campaign, filmed before Rodriguez joined the Yankees, shows him with Derek Jeter and Josh Beckett, playing Wiffle ball. Spots touting the All-Star Game in Houston will feature several members of the Astros.