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Summer Showcase Teams

By BPM, Photos by Ellen Schuerger, 09/04/11, 6:00AM EDT


Local town baseball leagues provide a place for any youngster to playball. High schools provide an opportunity for a far fewer number. Wrapped all around these, at every age, are summer showcase teams. In the Northeast, we fequently refer to them as ‘travel team’, as they add the excitement of travel to the challenge of playing a more competitive level of baseball. Some travel to play nearby towns, other participate in regional tournaments, and a few present their players to the highest level of competition on a national stage.

Long Island Bandits
Owners: Gary Fischer, President & General Manager; Dan Padrazo, VP
Contact: Gary Fischer - - (631) 925-6118
Indoor Facility: Play Like a Pro, Hauppauge.
Years in Business: Since 2008
2011 Age Groups: 11U, 12U, 13U, 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, 18U
2010 League Accomplishments: 12U and 13U Summer League  Champions
2010 Tournament Championships: Multiple tournament wins and finalist showings at each age group.
2011 Teams To Watch: 13U Gold, 16U Gold, 17U Gold.

Coaching Staff:
18U: Steve Duffy
17U: Mike Havelis
16U Gold: Kevin Salmon
16U Blue: John Rivera
16U White: Daniel Padrazo Jr.
15U Gold: Ian Morales
15U Blue: Ryan Griffith
15U White: Noel Purcell
14U: Chris Bozza
13U Gold: Jeff Heller
13U Blue: Nick Locassio
12U: Tom Neary
11U: Carl Schidt
The Long Island Bandits are a group of elite travel baseball teams from all over Long Island. Starting  in 2008 with two teams, the Bandits have grown to be one of the largest and most respected organizations locally.

The organization currently has teams from 12U to 18U that compete in local league play as well as national tournaments. Their professional coaching staff focus on player development and strive to help all players reach their highest potential.

2011 PLANS: 
Boys of Summer Memorial Day Tournament (Long Island, NY), National Junior Baseball League Memorial Day Tournament (Long Island, NY), Baseball Heaven Memorial Day Tournament (Yaphank, NY), Baseball Heaven Summer Classic (Yaphank, NY), Blue Chip Prospects Great American Classic (New Jersey and Brooklyn), Blue Chip Prospects Great American Classic (Long Island, NY), Cincy Flames Tournament (Columbus, Ohio), RYO Tournament (Long Island, NY), US Baseball Championships (Richmond, VA), ECTB Clash of Champions (Allentown, PA), Ripken Baseball (Myrtle Beach, SC), Sports at the Beach, (Rehoboth, DE), Blue Chip Prospects East Coast Championship (Flemington, NJ), Blue Chip Triple Crown, USA Nationals, East Coast Nationals. ECTB, Baseball Heaven Perfect Game.

Long Island Mariners
Owners: John Campolettano & Randy Caden
Contact: John Campolettano - (631) 689-0119
Indoor Facility: Long Island Mariners Sports Academy
20 Aero Road Bohemia, NY 11716 631-218-8200
NumberYears: 19 years as an organization and 3 years withy our own facility
2011 Age Groups: 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, 18U
2010 Tournament Championships: While we didn’t win any we had a good showing finishing 8th out of 32 teams in the Perfect Game with our 18U and our 17U played Sports at the Beach against 19U teams and finished 6th out of 24 teams. All together we played in 30 Tournaments with all our age groups last summer.

Coaching Staff:
18U: Jose Kortright
17U: Thomas Smith
16U: Felix Roche

2011 Teams To Watch:
18U: Will play in 2 leagues NYABL (NYC league that includes Team NY, Midville Dodgers, NY Greys and Youth Service) and Baseball Heaven. They will play in at least 3 Tournaments which include Perfect Game Led by our best player Lucas Vallas C/3B Northport headed to American International, Matt Sollins C South Side headed to Maritime, Matt Lyons P North Babylon to Manhattanville, Tyler Mannix OF John Glenn headed to High Point, Vincent Sharkey Middle Infielder Lynbrook headed to Adelphi, Anthony Zitaglio Middle Infielder Rocky Point headed to St. Joseph’s College and Nick Domnisch C North Babylon Albany. We also have a handful of Juniors on this team Mike Napolitano C Hauppauge, Rob Kosciuk P/1B, Bruce Tyler Middle Infielder/P Miller Place, Mike Parziale OF Half Hollow Hills East and Ryan Feminella OF Islip.
17U: Will play in the Boys of Summer. They will play in 3 Tournaments which include Sports at the Beach. This team has some very good talent that lacks only in experience which they will get this summer. Tim Clement P/OF Riverhead, Chas Lacko SS/P Farmingdale, Pat Mayer OF/P/C Comsewogue, Noah Raspler 1B/P Northport, Scott Ruconich P/1B Northport, Vincent Tyers OF South Side, Andrew Rodriguez East Hampton Infielder, Adam Stolls 3B Northport.
16U: Will play in 2 leagues Boys of Summer and Baseball Heaven. They will play in at least 3 Tournaments which include ECTB. This team also has come excellent Sophomores that will split playing time with the 17U team. Key players are Jonathan Eisdorfer P/SS Half Hollow Hills East, Joe Santos C Centereach, Coleman Vila P/OF Pierson, Ryan Federman P John Glenn and Mike Gilmor,
OF John Glenn.

Long Island Tigers
Owners: Ike Goldstein, Tom Hopke, Mike Turo
Contact: Tom Hopke -, 917.689.7595
Indoor Facility: Baseball Plus
Years in Business: Since 1969 (originally the Flushing Tigers)
2011 Age Groups: 13u-18u
2011 Teams To Watch: College Division, 17A, 16AA, 16A

Coaching Staff:
College (18U): Kelvin Ortiz, Tom Hopke
AAA (17U): Mike Turo
AA (16U): Ike Goldstein
A (16U): Kevin Perrucci
Rookie (13U): Charlie Patamarapipan
Developmental (8U): Ike Goldstein

In 1969, two Detroit Tiger Scouts, Warren Almond and Emil Gall founded The Flushing Tigers organization which was subsequently re-located to Long Island and renamed the Long Island Tigers. Since 1969, the Long Island Tigers Baseball Club has built a solid reputation as being one of the finest sandlot baseball programs in the country. From the very beginning, the founder’s goals have been to allow the top local high school players to be showcased as a team. Each ballplayer may use their athletic talents in baseball as a valuable asset in getting accepted to a university of their choice.

In their history, over one thousand players have gone on to play for many prestigious NCAA Division 1 & Division 2 collegiate programs. Over 150 players have signed professional contracts. Tigers alumni include Steve Karsay, John and Dave Valle and Omar Minaya.

In 2009, the organization was acquired by Ike Goldstein and Tom Hopke. Goldstein is a former Tiger and former professional catcher (Minnesota Twins and Montreal Expos) and Minor League Catching Instructor (Toronto Blue Jays). “Playing for the Flushing Tigers under Warren Almond and Russ Bove was one of my most memorable baseball experiences”, said Goldstein. “I couldn’t have had better people to learn the game from and I look forward to providing the same to future Tigers players.”

Hopke states “our goal was to find a decent amount of time for all of our players at all age levels.” That was one of the goals of the Tiger’s expansion to six teams in 2011. Another is to try to help out kids that might normally not be able to afford a travel baseball program. About 25% percent of the Tigers get financial assistance for their baseball expenses through their work-study program and sales of advertising in the Tigers media guide.

In 2011, Tigers teams will play in numerous tournaments including WWBA in Marietta Georgia (East Cobb), Dynamic World Series in Greenville, North Carolina, AABC Qualifier at Diamond Nation in NJ, Under Armor Firecracker Tournament in Jupiter, Florida, NESBC in Worcester, Massachusetts, Blue Chip at Diamond Nation, Super 17 at Diamond Nation, and Shootout at Toms River in NJ. Locally, they will be playing in the Boys of Summer and NYABL leagues.

Long Island Whalers
Owner: Brandon Kurz
Contact: 516.308.2103
Indoor Facility: Performance Factory
Years in Business: Since 2006
2011 Age Groups: 13u-18u, College
2010 League Accomplishments: 17U Long Island Baseball
Association Champions, 16U Boys of Summer Champions,
15U Boys of Summer Runner-Ups, 14U Perfect Game Runner-Ups
2010 Tournament Championships: 15U Triple Crown Wood Bat Champions, 14U Triple Crown Wood Bat Champions, 16U Silver Bracket Champions, Omaha Slumpbuster.
2011 Teams To Watch: 17 Navy, 16 Navy, 16 Blue, 15 Navy

Coaching Staff:
College: Keith Kenny, Assistant Coach, Manhattan College
17 Navy: Mike Herbst, Assistant Varsity Coach, Bayshore H.S. &
 Sean Fennessy, Former Captain & Starting MIF, C.W. Post
17 Blue: Mike Callahan, Pitching Coach, Molloy College
16 Navy: Matt Lemanczyk, Former five year pro, St. Louis Cardinals
 & Jason Galbraith, Former two year pro, St. Louis Cardinals
16 Blue: Dave Lemanczyk, Founder of Keg Conditioning & Former Pro Athlete
15 Navy: Kieran Black, Asst. JV Coach, St. Dominic H.S.
15 Blue: Mike Kearney, Former Captain & Starting 1st Baseman,
 New York Institute of Technology
14U: Anthony Serrapica, Head Coach, Manhasset Junior H.S.
13U: Lou Bernardi, Former Starting Pitcher at New York Institute of Technology

2011 PLANS
The Whalers are one of Long Island’s most promising teams in 2011. Established in 2006 by Baseball Player Magazine owner, Brandon Kurz, theWhalers have come a long way over the past two seasons. The Whalers, led by coaches long time coaches Keith Kenny, Mike Herbst, Matt Lemanczyk, Jason Galbraith, Kieran Black and many more, are an organization on the rise.

The Whalers snuck up on a lot of teams last season placing no lower than 2nd place in their divisions from ages 14u-17u. The 16u Whalers also won the Boys of Summer Championship while the 15u & 14u teams finished 2nd place in their respective divisions.

The Whalers pride themselves on providing a complete program. The Whalers provide a developmental system from ages 13u all the way up through College, while providing an extremely competitive National & Regional schedule for all teams in the system.

The Whalers are looking forward to building on their winning tradition in 2011 as they have much improved all teams at all levels. The Navy teams are especially good, but watch out for Kurz’s 16 & 17 Blue teams as well.

New York Gothams
Owners: Non-profit 501(c)3
Contact: Francisco Perez -
Indoor Facility: Pier 40, New York City
Years in Business: Since 2000
2011 Age Groups: 13U, 14U, 15U, 16U, and 18U
2010 Tournament Championships: 18U - Concordia College Invitational: 1st place; 17U - New Rochelle Athletics Invitational Tournament: 1st place; 16U: Blue Chip Prospects East Coast Champions: 1st place; 15U Red: ECTB National Championship: 1st place, Blue Chip Prospects Great American Classic: 2nd place, Baseball Heaven Memorial Day Championship: 2nd place; 15U Blue: Baseball Heaven Dave & Buster’s East Coast Nationals: 1st place; 14U: Triple Crown Summer Nationals: 2nd place; 13U: Sports at the Beach/CABA Seahorse Showdown: 2nd place, Triple Crown July 4th Classic: 2nd place
2011 Teams To Watch: 13U, 14U, 16U and 18U

Coaching Staff:
18U: Carlos Del Rosario
16U: Felix Roche
15U: Jake Rabinowitz
14U: Francisco Perez
13U: Gilberto Rodriguez

The NY Gothams youth baseball program was founded in 2000 to provide talented New York City baseball players an affordable opportunity to improve their skills, improve their sportsmanship and compete at the highest levels of play. The Gothams place a large emphasis on helping players make connections and receive the exposure that can assist them in gaining entry to quality New York high schools and colleges. Many alumni who are now or have played college ball, with scholarships often provided.

The Gothams’ stress that players should pursue their education with the same intensity they do sports. They provide an educational component to the program, instituting study hall as part of the workouts, and by offering low-cost SAT prep classes to interested players.

Players come from a wide variety of socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds and represent the broad diversity of the City itself. The Gothams have always stressed community outreach and since its inception has offered scholarships to players in financial need. MLB recognized the organizations efforts with a $10,000 grant through its Baseball Tomorrow fund. The NY Gothams extended that goal internationally when it organized a collection of uniforms and equipment for Homerun Hopefuls, a charitable organization that distributes its collections to children in need in the Dominican Republic.

In 2010, two of the NY Gothams players, Nelson Rodriguez and Fernelys Sanchez, were invited to play in the Area Code games, a highly prestigious, invitation-only event, held in Southern California and sponsored by ESPN. The two also played for the major-league-scout-selected Summer Rivalry Classic, played in Yankee Stadium in August.

Team New York
Owners: Non-profit corporation 501(c)3
Contact: Ian Millman -
Years in Business: Since 2010 (Predecessors, Since 1981)
2011 Age Groups: Senior Scout (18U), Selects (17-18), Showcase (17U), Futures (16U), Future15s (15U), Rookies (14U)
2011 Teams To Watch: 18U, 17U, 16U, 14U

Coaching Staff:
Senior: Marc Cuseta, Ian Millman,
Scout  Al Christensen
18U: Matthew Heenan, Pat Manganaro, Richard Armento
17U: Stanley Latimer, Bobby Delgado
16U: Bobby Cruz, James Mondesir, Mike Mondesir
15U: Pete D’Elia, Rufino Rodriguez, Mike Buonississ
14U: Tyler Abrams, Tony Fiorino, Arik Abrams

Team New York Baseball was created to bring the most complete baseball experience to allow city kids to be seen by collegiate and professional baseball communities. It has its roots in two other baseball organizations, the Bayside Yankees and the New York Nine.

Marc Cuseta jumped into the game of amateur baseball thirty years ago, in 1981, with a passion. The Bayside Yankee stressed the keystones of Baseball success - loyalty, hard work, respect of the game, and respect on oneself. This formula helped over 40 former players reach the Major League, as well as hundreds of others that played professional baseball at other levels. The Bayside Yankees still today have a nationwide reputation.

The New York Nine was created by Frank “Buddy” Paine along with Ian Millman and Stanley Latimer.  Payne was the Northeast regional scout of the Pittsburgh Pirates, after he fulfilled the same role for the Detroit Tigers. He also was the head coach at Iona, and also coached at Concordia College and in the Indians organization. Millman was the former Vice President of Team New York Cardinals, as well as the head coach of Francis Lewis HS in Queens. Millman is presently an associate scout with the Anaheim Angels and formerly with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Latimer ran the successful Westchester Wolfpack as well as several leagues.

“Lots of summer programs are about chasing trophies, but we concentrate on helping our student-athletes become men,” states Millman. “Our program of development is about taking our players weaknesses and making them their strengths. The key is to prepare and situate our student athletes at the next level, wherever it may be”.

In 2010, 15 players from the organization were drafted in MLB’s First Year Player Draft. And in  2011, 17 current or former players were drafted by major league ballclubs and/or signed affiliated pro contracts (as of 6/14/2011). For two straight years, better than 1% of the entire ML draft class are/were affiliated with Team New York Baseball.

In 2011, Team NY high school seniors will going on to play for teams like Illinois State, Seton Hall, St. John’s, the Naval Academy, Princeton, Maryland, Bucknell, Virginia Tech, Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt, and Michigan.

2011 PLANS
In 2011, Team NY will be competing in the AABC Super Regional (Diamond Nation, NJ), the Mid American World Series (Louisville, KY), the Premiere World Series (Joplin, MO), WWBA National Championship (East Cobb, GA), Liberty Tournament (Glen Cove and Bronx, NY), as well as other events, scrimmages, and league play. They will add other events to best meet the needs of the players, the parents, the coaching community, and the scouting community.

Team New York Cardinals
Board of Directors: Rich Kashdan, Craig Everett, Charlie Foster,
Craig Sheikowitz
Contact: Rich Kashdan -
Indoor Facility: Benjamin N. Cardozo High School
Years in Business: Since 1990
2011 Age Groups: 16U, 18U, College
2010 League Accomplishments: 18U LIBA finalist
2010 Tournament Championships: 18U Liberty &
Westchester Tournament finalists
2011 Teams To Watch: 16U, 18U, College

Coaching Staff:
College:  Barry Silverstein
18U:  Barry Silverstein, Brian Flynn
16U:  Jamie Adams

Team NY Cardinals is a non-profit baseball organization which prides itself on preparing our players (at every age group) to succeed at the next level. This includes school, life and baseball.  They play in various competitive leagues (LIBA, FABL etc.) and venture into tournaments both local and around the country each year.  They have been successful in the baseball world both in league and tournament play.

According to board member Rich Kashdan, “We are fortunate to have had and still have college coaches, former college players, quality high school coaches and overall exceptional baseball people in our organization.  The qualities and values we teach on the field can be applied to all walks of our players lives.  Many of our players have gone on to play college ball and we have been fortunate to have had a fair amount drafted.  Just as important, the vast majority have gone on to be very successful in life. We are college connected and do our best to help those players who choose to continue their baseball career.”

2011 PLANS:
16U team will be playing in the Blue Chip “Great American Classic” (Staten Island, NY) from June 24 to June 27. They will also be attending the BH Summer Challenge in July (Yaphank, NY) and the Fordham University 16 and Under tournament in June (Bronx, NY). They will also be playing in the Long Island Baseball Association (LIBA) summer league. 18U team will be playing in the LIBA as well, and participating in the Great American Classic (Yaphank, NY), the Liberty Tournament, (Glen Cove, NY and Bronx, NY), Sports At The Beach, Rehobeth, DE), and the Crush Tournament in July at (Bronxville, NY). College Team will be playing in the Federation Amateur Baseball League (FABL). If they win their league, they will go on to American Amateur Baseball Congress (AABC) regional play.

After the summer season is over for the Cardinals, there is a short hiatus before the Fall season begins (right after Labor Day). They also conduct a five week clinic at Cardozo High School that starts the in January.

Storm Baseball Academy Inc.
Founder and Owner: Mike Leiderman
President and Partner: Nick Clark
Travel Team President and Partner: Shaun Manning
Contact: 516 481 2255
2011 Age Groups: 13U - 18U
2010 League: 13U BOS  Finalists, 15U BOS Champions,
8U LIBA Finalists
2010 Tournaments: 13U BOS Memorial Day Champs, 13U BOS 4th of July Champs, 16U WWBA Perfect Game Pool Winner, 16U BCS Perfect Game Pool Winner, 16U Dynamic World Series Pool Winner, 16U Blue Chip Diamond Nation Tournament Semi Finals, 16U Sal Agustenelli Tournament
Tournament Champion: 17U Dynamic World Series Finalist, 17U BCS Perfect Game - Playoff round, 18U Baseball Heaven 18U Columbus Day - Tournament Champion

This will be our 4th summer as youth travel Academy has been open 6 years And semi - pro team has been around 22 years

Teams to watch:
18U White: The 2011 Long Island Storm 18U team has 11 Division 1 commitments on roster and will be a force throughout the summer season.
17U White: The Long Island Storm 17U White team won pools in several national tournaments.The team also has six of the top ten players in the state, as ranked by Perfect Game.
16U White: The Long Island Storm 16U White team placed at several tournaments last year. The won the Boys of Summer 15U and went 25 -1 on Long Island,
14U White: This team is loaded with good, young talent.  Went 62-13 last summer, but lost in the Boys of Summer finals. They won several local tournaments throughout the summer.

Youth Service League
Owners: Non-profit 501(c) (3)
Contact: Mel Zitter - 347-581-1217 -
Indoor Facility: John Jay H.S. & Samuel Tilden H.S. (Brooklyn)
Years in Business: Since 1954
2011 Age Groups: Pee Wee (4 to 7); 8U, 9U, 10U, 11U, 12U,
13U, 14U, 15U, 16U, 17U, 18U, College
2010 League Accomplishments: 13U (AABC Sandy Koufax in Michigan) and 14U (AABC Sandy Koufax in Surprise, AZ) won North Atlantic regional champions; 16U PONY Regional Champions in Brooklyn and New Hampshire, runner up in Greensboro, NC; 19U (AAABA runner up in New Jersey)
2010 Tournament Championships: Beast of the East

The Youth Service League is a delinquency prevention that uses sports as a tool to get kids in college. Their in house Little League serves kids ages 4 to 7, and their All Star program is for players 8 to
20 years old. The program is heavily supported by fundraising to keep the costs low to all participants. YSL sponsors more than twenty teams a year, with older teams typically playing seven to eight games a week.

One player of note on YSL’s 17U team is Edgar LeBron, a junior at Martin Van Buren High School in Queens. Although he was born mostly deaf, that has not stopped LeBron from any goal he has set for himself. He plays varsity basketball, as well as shortstop, 3rd, outfield and pitches. According to YSL Director Mel Zitter, “Edgar is an example of what hard work can overcome.”

Many YSL alumni have gone on to have careers in professional baseball. One example is Pedro Beato, who has been on the New York Mets roster since opening day. Another is former Met and current Houston Astros starter Nelson Figueroa. In fact, Figueroa has donated generously back to support YSL, the program that supported him on his way up.

2011 PLANS:
Again this year, Youth Service All Star teams are playing in many high profile events around the country. Their teams will be participating in PONY regional tournaments, Beat of the East, tournaments in Greensboro (NC), New Hampshire, and AABC’s Connie Mack Regional and Sandy Koufax National, as well as the Parade Ground League.