Carlos Beltran: Houston Astros star donates $1M, starts Hurricane Maria fundraiser

By Alex Butler  |  Sept. 22, 2017 at 6:22 PM
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Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Puerto Rican baseball star Carlos Beltran has donated $1 million to help those affected by Hurricane Maria in his home country.

The Houston Astros outfielder created a CrowdRise page to organize funds for the victims of the storm.

"Puerto Rico. My family and I are with you not only in our prayers, but also in our effort to rebuild our beautiful country," Beltran said in a video on the fundraiser page. "Jessica and I will be donating a million dollars to different charities. To rebuild homes, schools and help with the short and long term needs of our people."

"Puerto Rico, I Love You. I know we will rise up."

Beltran's wife Jessica and children also made a cameo in the video.

"Please help us share this message and help us with your donation," Jessica said in the video. "There is no small contribution but great hearts that know that united we are stronger. The devastation of our country is heartbreaking. Today Puerto Rico needs our help and yours and how Carlos Ivan said, with the help of everyone we will rise stronger than ever."

The fundraiser kicked off at about 3 p.m. Friday and had raised a total of $1,002,600 in three hours, with donations from 28 people.

Beltran, 40, was born in Manati, Puerto Rico. Astros star shortstop Carlos Correa - who turned 23-years-old Friday - and catcher Juan Centeno were also born in Puerto Rico.

"There's a devastating hurricane heading toward Puerto Rico, and it's going to crush the island. So obviously, my thoughts and prayers are already over there," Correa told the Houston Chronicle earlier this week. "I've got most of my family over there, so I'm really worried about that. My parents and siblings are the only ones over here, so I've got a lot of people there. ... I talked to everybody already. But there's not much that you can do."

Hurricane Maria - now a Category 3 storm - was 115 miles east-northeast of the Southeastern bahamas and about 395 miles east-southeast of Nassau, in the Bahamas, accoridng to the National Hurricane Center's 5 p.m. Friday advisory.

Officials in Puerto Rico said the there have been at least six known deaths from the hurricane.

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