ST. CLOUD - As the St. Cloud Rox begin another season of minor league baseball, their brand in the community extends well beyond the games themselves.

Rox Assistant General Manager Mike Johnson says their 36 home games are just the beginning of what they do.

Over half of these games we have some sort of a community event in the morning where we send our players out, our mascot out, our promotions team out and just give our fans, specifically the kids, the chance to interact with our players.

Johnson says during the 2016 season they helped raise over $26,000 for local non-profit organizations.

This is the 6th season of Rox baseball in St. Cloud. Field Manager Augie Rodriguez has lead the team all six years. He says a chance to work with the young players is what keeps bringing him back every year.

I love teaching the game of baseball. I love meeting new kids and trying to pass on my knowledge of what I was taught as a minor league baseball player.

St. Cloud Rox players, and in the entire Northwood League, are all Division I and II college players.

The Rox home opener is Friday verses the Rochester Honkers. First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. at Joe Faber Field. Former Minnesota Twin Tom Brunansky will throw out the first pitch and sign autographs.

They also have homes games tomorrow (Saturday) and on Sunday against the Bismark Larks.