Ballpark of the Palm Beaches
Jupiter, FL
APRIL 11-14, 2024

Hello Players,

In this email (which I’m sure half of you won’t read), is all the information you’ll need before you get down to sunny West Palm Beach Florida next week.

It will have the schedule, final rosters, rules, do’s and don’ts and general info about the event and its surrounding area.

I’ll start off by thanking you for your support. For most of you, you’ve been to this event many times. It was a groundbreaking tournament in 2004 when we introduced pretty much what a Fantasy Camp would have, without the huge price tag. Many other baseball organizers copied our format and design, and that’s okay, but I’m very proud that PATP was the first.

So here we go…

There will be an open BP session in the stadium on Wednesday April 10th, between noon and 4pm. We will have all the screens, turtle, pitching machine and balls ready to be smacked around. You’ll be able to enter the clubhouse and store your equipment at your preassigned locker. If you want to shower afterwards, bring a towel. Towels will be available for game days only.

You’ll enter the Stadium on The Military Trail entrance south of 45th St. NOT, the main entrance facing the ballpark. There is a large parking lot between the all the fields. Drive straight ahead and the clubhouse will have a sign in front. Tough to miss.

Clubhouse Rules and Info: No one other than players are allowed in the clubhouse unless I have given permission for a guest to enter. I’m sure there will be a few children who want to peek in, and that’s fine, I just need to know about it.

At the end of the day, you’ll take the laundry you want done and put it in the plainly marked bins: Uniforms, Loops and Towels. We’ll show you how to use a laundry loop. With 9 teams, a late game is on the schedule that won’t end until about 5:15 or so. If you’re playing in the last game, you may not get your uniforms cleaned overnight as we have to go off sight to provide this service. So bring a few pairs of pants etc. Your uniform will be cleaned if we have not got to it, the next morning. So please be understanding. Our own staff is providing the labor here, not the clubbies. Every team manager will get an envelope for the clubhouse gratuity. It starts at $20 bucks. This has always been the standard fee. There will be a cold adult beverage waiting for you in the clubhouse at the end of the day. The clubhouse will open every morning at 8 AM. You can use the batting tunnels near the fields to get in some swings before games start.

As of this writing, I still have not contracted with a trainer. I’m hoping to do so before I leave this Saturday. We will also have a camp photographer Andrew Pickering who works with the Red Sox on site. He will be there Friday. Does great work!

We will be having lunch upstairs overlooking the ballpark on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Saturday’s lunch session is going to run a few minutes longer as we have a special guest playing with us, former Major Leaguer, Mark Whitten who shares the record for most RBI’s in a game with 12. In that game he hit 4 home runs for the Cardinals. Mark has agreed to tell a funny story or 2 and we’ll open it up for a Question and Answer segment.

On Friday night beginning at 6:30 we will be having a get together on the concourse after the games to celebrate our 20th Anniversary. Hot Dogs, Burgers, Pulled Pork some free beer, cornhole and even some pickleball will be set up. We will be announcing our Dickie Vaughan Good Guy Award winner and our first Annual Matthew Rodriguez Memorial Humanitarian Award winner.

I need to know if a guest is coming with you. The guest fee is $40 to be paid upon entering the ballpark. I also need to know if you are not attending. I need a final head count Thursday morning.

Tournament Format:

Games are 7 innings and are modified rules. The Rules will be posted. We have 9 teams 6 of which are coming as organized squads to play with 3 teams of pool players. The managers will meet at The Embassy Suites at 6:30 pm near the bar on Wednesday night. Final format will be discussed then.

If the weather is not an issue, you’ll play 7 games in 3 and a half days. Sunday one game will be scheduled, and you should be out of the complex by 1:30 PM. If the weather is an issue, we are very adept at plans B, C and D if needed. You’ll always know what is going on.

Some other quick points, you can wear spikes if you want, but not in the clubhouse. If you are a catcher, bring your gear. I will have 2 sets on site to be borrowed and also a limited number of helmets. At this stage you all should have your own helmet. And finally…absolutely no sunflower seeds on the field.

The Greater Palm Beaches:

Having lived in this area a few hundred years ago, I’ve seen it grown big time. But it’s still beautiful. Take to time to drive A1A in Palm Beach, it’s breathtaking. Downtown West Palm has plenty to offer for night life and there are great restaurants nearby the camp hotel on PGA Blvd. Speaking of which, if you have not made a reservation yet call The Embassy Suites; 561 622 1000. Ask for group sales. Ask for Klara Goldstein and lie to her that you’re my best friend.

Most teams go out for a team dinner. I can’t recommend any place better than Zuccarelli’s on Okeechobee Blvd. in West Palm Beach. Great food, service ambiance and a new covered outdoor area make this a no brainer choice. Olimpia Zuccarelli is a dear friend of mine and supplied the food the past 3 years at the park. She’s first class all the way. Mention the baseball tournament and book that large table!!  Call 561 686 7739.

On Saturday night at Zuccarelli’s famous PATP Hall of Famer Randy Lundi will be performing with his singing group, The Officers and Gentlemen. Should be a great time.

As always, I ask you to help us support a great charity called Cleats for Kids. Any unwanted, used baseball equipment, uniforms, cleats, anything please bring with you to the ballpark. This year is a somber year for this charity as we will be honoring the young man who started it nearly 20 years ago, Matthew Rodriguez, who passed away from Juvenile Diabetes last April. Matthews parents and extended family will be joining us at the get together Friday night. I know for some of you that are flying into town, that to bring the gear means a bag fee etc. I get it, but what this equipment does for under privileged children is well worth the few bucks.

And finally, I’d like to extend to all the thousands of players who have joined us for any of our events the past 20 years, my sincerest heart felt thank you. You enabled me to have a life that centered around baseball. I look back at we all accomplished together, playing at Major League Parks, Japan, Field of Dreams, Rickwood Field and so many other wonderful places. It led to my working with MLB for over a decade. Pretty wild when you consider our first event in Jupiter in 2004 had 18 guys. My son, brother and 3 of my employees rounded out the squads.

It’s been a great journey and I’m happy to say it will continue!

See you in a few days. Travel safely.