TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays and Moffitt Cancer Center will kick off the fifth-annual Spring Swing-Moffitt’s Sun Safety Tour on March 2 before the 1:05 p.m. game between the University of South Florida and the New York Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
The Rays and Moffitt have partnered to offer free skin cancer screenings at four spring training games in March. The program will search for the early signs of skin cancer and promote sun safety and skin cancer awareness during its stops.
During the past four years, Spring Swing has screened more than 2,400 people, identifying 368 suspected cancerous lesions, including 20 suspected melanomas.
“We are honored to partner once again with Moffitt Cancer Center to provide an important health check for baseball fans throughout the state,” Rays Principal Owner Stuart Sternberg said.
Melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. Florida is ranked second in the nation with the most estimated new cases of melanoma in 2011, according to the American Cancer Society.
“Melanoma affects people of all ages, races and backgrounds,” said Dr. Vernon Sondak, chair of the Cutaneous Oncology Program at Moffitt. “It is imperative that we spread the word about the risk and encourage people to take necessary sun precautions daily and get their skin checked on a regular basis.”
The screenings are open to the public and will begin approximately two hours before the start of the game.
About Moffitt Cancer Center
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Located in Tampa, Moffitt Cancer Center is the only Florida-based National Cancer Institute Comprehensive Cancer Center, a designation that recognizes Moffitt’s excellence in research and contributions to clinical trials, prevention and cancer control. Moffitt has 14 affiliates in Florida, one in Georgia, one in Pennsylvania and two in Puerto Rico. Moffitt is also a member of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network, a prestigious alliance of the country’s leading cancer centers, and is listed in U.S. News & World Report as one of “America’s Best Hospitals” for cancer.
About the Tampa Bay Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays have proudly represented Major League Baseball in the Tampa Bay region since 1998. The organization and its foundation are committed to building a strong community bond through meaningful interaction and charitable contributions.