Yankees help in kitchen as part of HOPE Week

Associated Press  |  Last updated June 26, 2012
Mlb-yankees-tigers-may
Robinson Cano found a sliver of room in the cramped kitchen in Queens and sliced slabs of ham into neat one-inch cubes. It turns out the New York Yankees' All-Star second baseman with the smoothest swing around is pretty good with a knife, too. Cano, along with teammates Curtis Granderson, Hiroki Kuroda and Boone Logan, spent a couple of hours Tuesday afternoon helping Jorge Muonz do what he's done each and every day - except one - for nearly eight years: prepare more than 100 meals in his crowded house for day laborers who can't afford to eat. ''If you're willing to do it, you can do anything you want,'' Munoz said. Cano and Co. surprised the 5-foot-2, 48-year-old Colombian immigrant at his modest, semi-attached home in a working class neighborhood as part of the Yankees' fourth annual HOPE Week, hopping out of SUVs carrying 20-pound bags of rice and jugs of vegetable oil. Munoz didn't seem fazed by the stars - he says he has little time for baseball - but was appreciative for the attention and help for his truly grass roots effort. ''Let's get to cooking,'' Granderson said with a bag instead of a bat slung over his shoulder. Munoz was working as a school bus driver - he was let go in December - in 2004 when he got the idea for his charity. One afternoon he met the laborers waiting on a street corner under the elevated train tracks a few blocks from his house. They told him, if they get picked for work, they can afford to eat. Soon after, Munoz was sitting in his parked bus when he saw someone dumping a large quantity of food into a garbage bin outside a business. He approached the person and asked if he could have the food. Why not feed those men? That first night, with his mom's help, he handed out eight brown-bag sandwiches. It has steadily grown and he now prepares and distributes up to 160 dinners in a night. He gets help in the kitchen from his mom, sister, and a cook that his not-for-profit ''Angel in Queens'' pays for. Munoz estimates that he spends $1,200 per week on his endeavor with $450 coming out of his family's pocket - his sister, Luz, contributes from her paycheck as an employee of the U.S. Social Security Administration, and he uses money from his unemployment checks. Otherwise, donations trickle in one check at a time. Munoz was heartbroken the one time he couldn't feed the folks under the tracks. It was a snowstorm about three years ago, when then roads were impassable, and he couldn't get the necessary supplies. ''The next day they said they were waiting for me,'' he recalled. As Cano cut up the ham, Kuroda stirred it into two pots of lentil and potato soup simmering on a stove most would consider too small to cook for a family of four, let alone roast 60 pounds of chicken once a week. The Japanese star smiled as he took his task seriously. Kuroda said through a translator that he had never seen this kind of soup before. In a similar overstuffed 6- by 9-foot kitchen upstairs, Logan, a 6-foot-5 lefty, showed Granderson how easy it is to peel and cut up potatoes. ''I tried to peel a potato and was struggling,'' he said, ''but Boone was knocking them out.'' Munoz will have some help with his regular 9:30 p.m. run to distribute the meals Tuesday. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and HOPE Week alumni will accompany Munoz to the street corner under the rails and hand out food.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Roger Goodell to attend first game in New England since Deflategate

NBA commissioner Adam Silver wants a female head coach ‘sooner than later’

How significant is Celtics’ milestone of passing Cavs for the top seed?

Grant Hill reflects on Christian Laettner’s shot on its 25th anniversary

Chargers need to draft a young QB according to head coach Anthony Lynn

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Seahawks GM stomps Marshawn Lynch rumors

Mel Kiper: Joe Mixon is most talented RB in draft

Gonzaga's Jordan Mathews long road back to the desert

Lonzo Ball on Markelle Fultz: ‘I’m better than him’

Harden: Playing every game should count in MVP discussion

Texans owner: We didn’t know Brock Osweiler well enough

The 'Are you mentally prepared for 'One Shining Moment'?' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Serge Ibaka can't connect

Can the Padres' Christian Bethancourt really succeed at pitcher and catcher?

The Raiders will forever belong to Oakland

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Box Score 3/28: Wilt's last game

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Best, worst and hard to stomach MLB offseason moves

The 28 craziest ballpark foods for the 2017 season

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Box Score 3/24: Waiting on West Virginia

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'Are you mentally prepared for 'One Shining Moment'?' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Serge Ibaka can't connect

Can the Padres' Christian Bethancourt really succeed at pitcher and catcher?

The Raiders will forever belong to Oakland

Best, worst and hard to stomach MLB offseason moves

The Rewind: George Mason's improbable run to the Final Four

Baseball movies you can stream now to hold you over until Opening Day

Best of Yardbarker: Did Team USA's victory save the World Baseball Classic?

Breaking down the Naismith Award race

Eat, Drink, Watch: Weekends are for upsets

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker