As Trey Mancini prepares to take the field for his first MLB All-Star Home Run Derby tonight, the cancer survivor will accomplish another first by releasing his inaugural NFT collection. All proceeds from the NFT sale will be used to raise funds and awareness to support early detection of colon cancer through The Trey Mancini Foundation.
The cause is near and dear to the star first baseman, who successfully underwent treatment for stage 3 colon cancer last year at the age of 28. Mancini told Chainlink Today he was inspired to harness the growing enthusiasm for NFTs as an opportunity to aid the fight against the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States.
“From a fundraising standpoint, it’s an exciting tool for us to use in the ongoing fight against cancer because it enables us to offer something new and unique to supporters,” he said.
Mancini collaborated with Ben Armstrong and Justin Williams of BitBoy Crypto, Matt Rodgers, The Trey Mancini Foundation, and designers Haddon McKinney and Steven Polizzi on his NFTs, which will be verified and validated by UREEQA’s Responsible Minting™ technology. Today, UREEQA announced that it integrated industry-leading on-chain random number generator Chainlink VRF to securely and fairly assign bonus rewards, including autographed memorabilia, to select NFTs now and in the future.
The collection will be available on the UREEQA Marketplace starting July 12th at 7pm EST.
In addition to 500 fixed-price NFTs, a one-of-a-kind NFT will go up for a 48-hour auction, whose winner will receive the autographed bat Mancini uses in the 2021 Home Run Derby, as well as autographed cleats, batting gloves and a personal batting lesson with Mancini himself.
Mancini said creating NFTs with life-saving potential has been a careful and care-filled operation. “My fans are so passionate and they spend their hard-earned money on tickets and merchandise. I put everything into every game for them, and I owe it to them to make sure this drop is conducted in a way that both rewards and protects them,” he told Chainlink Today.
“UREEQA’s platform gives them the ultimate security with Responsible Minting and a robust Package of Proof, while Chainlink’s VRF technology allows us to bring trust to the random selection process when assigning additional utilities and perks to the NFT. We’ve covered all of our bases.”
Harsch Khandelwal, UREEQA’s CEO, said integrating Chainlink VRF was essential to creating a fair and transparent process for selecting reward-winning NFTs. “Chainlink is the trusted name in the space and its VRF technology allows us to run a fair campaign for The Trey Mancini Foundation,” he told Chainlink Today.
UREEQA’s Package of Proof is designed to protect NFT creators and buyers by verifying each NFT’s authenticity, copyright and redeemability. Khandelwal said utilizing Chainlink VRF is UREEQA’s first step in exploring more exciting dynamic NFT use cases leveraging Chainlink’s suite of decentralized services.
“The industry is just scratching the surface in terms of what’s possible with NFTs and we believe UREEQA’s Responsible Minting technology coupled with Chainlink’s oracles can bring new and exciting use cases forward.”
Even more than a Home Run Derby win, Mancini said he wants to hit home how important it is to harness blockchain technology as a force for good. In his view, the fight against colon cancer is just one of many charitable causes NFT campaigns might support in the near future.
“I hope more athletes and celebrities take advantage of the fact that the NFT space can pave the way for their fans to gain something special while helping raise money for good causes in the process.”