Hello Players,

Lots of news to discuss…please read it all the way through…..

I want to thank all the players who made the trip down to Palm Beach a few weeks ago. After 14 years there I leave that event knowing it was one of the best events we have held at that fabulous facility. Many thanks to my staff of volunteers, Dave Vonderhaar of the Cardinals and all of Roger Deans staff for making it an easy event to run.

Congrats go to the division-winning Pirates and Reds. The Reds beat a very good Jersey shore team in the most exciting final in PATP history with a 4 to 3 12 inning victory. If it had gone another inning or 2 some guys may have missed their flights back home….great game and great sportsmanship was shown by all on the field!

The dates for next year’s PB Classic are April 5 to 8, 2018

Every once in a while as we attempt to bring fresh new places to play in addition to our usual spots we run into a little problem with sales…unfortunately, that is the case for our scheduled May event in Myrtle Beach. I guess a week before Memorial Day wasn’t the best timing. But have no fear we are going there!

The Pelicans have agreed to move our dates to September 29 to October 1. These dates became available on our schedule after I received an email from The Friends of Rickwood which informed us that the city of Birmingham has found structural issues in the grandstand and have closed the park for the remainder of 2017. Personally, I’m heartbroken. I love that field dearly and sincerely wish this is not the beginning of the end for that great park. They are awaiting estimates on fixing the issues and hope to reopen in 2018. I pray the city spends the money on it and we return in 2018. It would be a sin to let that park die.

This July in Miami is the annual MLB All-Star Game. For the past 7 years we have run MLB’s fantasy camp. That program has been dropped due to lack of interest. In fact, we sold 10 spots last year to make it happen.

That all being said, we believe we can get 24 people together for a great 4 or 5 day camp complete with all the trimmings…tix to the games etc. uniforms, 4-star lodging, food and great former pros to be coaches. We will be putting this out for formal sale next week as we finish up some details.

Our Field of Dreams trips are close to being sold out. The original weekend August 18-20 has had 2 cancellations. The registration page is open again. Our second week has about 14 spots left, but they may be taken by a group who are trying to get a team together. I have told them the page is open and I will not hold spots. So August 10-13 is also open.

And a note about this camp…There is going to be a 24 field complex built around the site of Field of Dreams later this year. I think the cozy feeling of the site will be lost and I honestly don’t think it will be a camp we will offer again. I think it’s a one and done deal… if you are on the fence…get off it and join us!

I want to thank all of the Palm Beach Campers who bought a shirt to help our stricken baseball brother Matt Leedom. It means a lot to the family. There will be a fundraising day in Sioux Falls S.D. on May 13th…yours truly might finally visit the great plains and help out. I’ll keep you posted on details if you’d like to contribute to Matt and his family.

On a sad note, our great friend Steve Sparks has taken a turn for the worse with his struggle against cancer. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers. PATP has never known such a giving and baseball loving man.

And finally, we are always looking for venues and may have found one in Camden N.J….Campbell’s Field…might be a flash summer early fall event in the works…

Keep swinging for the fences!!