CHICAGO (CBS) — In any other year right about now, we’d be talking about sports highlights – maybe Anthony Rizzo stepping up to the plate and a long fly.

Now with baseball season on hold amid the coronavirus pandemic, Rizzo has stepped up to the plate per usual. He has already donated more than $10 million since the inception of his foundation.

Now, Rizzo is at bat for those on the front line. He talked with CBS 2’s Brad Edwards about his efforts Thursday from his Florida home – joined by his dog, Kevin.

Edwards: “Where exactly did you come up with (the idea), ‘Hey, let’s get hot meals to doctors and nurses on the front line?’”

Rizzo: “The people on the front lines right now are really putting their lives at risk with something they really can’t see. It’s crazy in a lot of hospitals. Right now, more than ever, they’re so isolated because all they can do is go to work – and some of them can’t even really go home to what their home is because they have to be isolated from their families, so we just wanted to be able to help provide meals to them.”

Edwards: “What’s the reaction been like?”
Rizzo: “We’ve had videos of staff members crying just in excitement We’re trying to get them some good meals that they don’t normally get during a hospital shift.”

Edwards: “We don’t want to jam you up with anything baseball. One day we’re going to say let’s play two. and are you going to be ready?

Rizzo: “So Emily and I work out every day – my wife. Kevin keeps us busy. We’re active – we have bikes. We ride our bikes. Just staying as active as we can and doing as much as we can with the limited space.”

Rizzo’s mission is a win-win for many. He is donating the money and getting food from some of his favorite restaurants that are now only open for takeout and delivery – putting in orders they need.

To help Rizzo’s efforts, text Hope44 to 52000 to donate $20, or visit the website www.rizzo44.com/donate.

Everything donated on Thursday will be doubled by the O’Reilly Family Foundation.

Brad Edwards