• E-mail BethlehemBraves@hotmail.com or Tele: 518-469-8772

Bethlehem Mickey Mantle, Inc.

Bethlehem BRAVES

In response to the Town of Bethlehem field rental fee increases of 357% - 700% more:

This does seem to be wrong on many levels.I do think that there are still enough kids from Bethlehem playing for the Braves and in the future as well. An athlete such as our son Mike, who struggled to make the Bethlehem travel teams through the years benefited from this group tremendously. This set him up for finally making the Varsity baseball team this spring his Senior year.
He put lots of volunteer hours in along with substantial money to play as well that it seems like... such a shame to do this. When we live in a competitive School district for sports it certainly gave him a sense of hope to get better and reach some goals that may not have been able to be reached without the Braves. Meeting kids from different schools/areas has been a great experience for him and has helped his self esteem and his ability to become a better player. I see nothing wrong with have a mixed group of kids that have worked very hard at achieving such a great field and baseball experience.

We will be sad to know these rules may change for selfish reasons. I do know that Steve Peterson has also tried hard to pull in more Bethlehem kids to tryout and play for them as well as my husband a town resident to coach at one point. We have five children and so far my other two boys were luck enough to play for their age level Bethlehem travel teams, which has been much more affordable . The town charges a fair amount to rent the fields to the Braves as it is. We certainly can not afford a 700% increase in cost for our soon to be college level player. This is very disappointing to us. As a town resident this proposal will actually hurt us and that doesn't seem fair either. Can't their be a better way to do this??

Christine Cubello

Delmar, NY

 

Spotlight Newspaper - July 13, 2016 issue, page 15 "Letter to the Editor":

"Proposed rules on town parks is bullying"

Mr. Michael Hallisey, Managing Editor - Spotlight.
I have been watching the Bethlehem field usage issue closely as I was in a similar situation as a coach of a Travel girls’ softball team for many years. In 2000 we left the Tomboys program at a time when many of the other higher level players from the organization (as well as other community programs in the Capital District) joined or formed teams with the goals of providing our kids with better opportunities. Facility and field usage was always an issue, even back then, and we did our best to keep it affordable which was difficult. With a team made up from girls from several different towns, we probably had the most players from our own community at 4 or 5 of the 13 players. At that time, we didn’t even pay for field use, as for the most part, it was on a first come basis. Requiring the amount they now want is absurd. Are you also telling me you are going to start checking all of the users that are enjoying the parks etc. to make sure their group is 90%? I think not and it saddens me that these fine groups are being singled out. Even Tomboys, who now recruit from outside our community to maintain membership, are in jeopardy of this rule.
As I listen to the reasons for why this situation has become such a debate and witness the specific targeting of Mr. Peterson and his baseball group, I am disgusted at how the Town of Bethlehem is “rewarding them” for their hard work and dedication to our children. For years now this program has taken it upon themselves to construct, repair, and care for their home field when the town could not afford it themselves or just didn’t care. Now all this effort and financial investment is being stolen like some modern day Robin Hood where they not only can’t get preference to reserve this field, but are being charged exorbitant rates to use it when they do. Are you telling me that the cost to maintain this field by the town outweighs the benefit of what these folks donate(d) to its care in addition to thousands they already pay? I don’t buy it for a second and see this as just another money grab and chance for John Clarkson to flex his muscles of control to BULLY our residents into paying more to utilize something already built and paid for. Lest you forget that having our kids occupied with sports helps to keep them off the streets, substance abuse free and out of mischief. Just another selfish act by the town administration.
It seems like every day I wake up to find that those who have not been a part of building this fine town are doing something new to tear it down and make it what THEY want. I continue to encourage everyone to stand up, get involved and speak their mind to protect what we have built. It not too late!

David Harrington

Bethlehem

 

9 years ago when my son Tim graduated from Hudson Valley LL in Ravena, he wanted to find somewhere to continue baseball.
Ravena no longer had a Babe Ruth league, and as we knew people connected to Bethlehem Babe Ruth and it is an adjoining town, we ap
plied there, and were turned down because we were not from Bethlehem. Even though that violates Babe Ruth rules. I don't believe that there is a problem with this now, but there was then.
He wound up playing for an independent league that traveled sometimes 2-1/2 hours from home to play. This was difficult. At the end of that summer we found the Braves. He is now 21 and continues to play for them. He finished his HS career, and is now going in to his senior year in college, and is a pitcher and infielder there.
The Braves opened their arms to him 8 years ago , and although their have been ups and downs along the way, he has always been a welcome part of the Braves family. The Braves offered him an opportunity to better his skills, gave him the confidence and skill set to become a college baseball player, and a strong person. He has made many friends, and connections through the Braves and will have these friendships and memories to look back on for the rest of his life. He is also now teammates with several of his opponents from other HS and College teams, who also found a home with the Braves.
If the town of Bethlehem see's this as a problem, shame on them. The Braves are truly in it for the kids and the love of the game.
Personally I have put in countless hours , helped raise $ all for improvements on the fields making improvements in the organization, helping to build a better baseball experience. I hope that the town will reconsider the proposal, as it will certainly do more harm than good. And I hope that they remember that Field 5 was an abandoned run down, swamped field when the Braves approached the town with the idea of building what is now a showpiece.

Pete Hughes

Ravena

I would like to thank Steve Peterson for everything he has done for our family and very grateful for having my son be a part of a great team. He has been with the Braves for 3 years now and I could not ask for a better coach in Jimmer. Thank you again Steve for everything that you have done for this league and all the players.

Brian Wood

Bethlehem

 

With the long weekend coming I wanted to give a huge Thank you to Steve Peterson and The Bethlehem Mickey Mantle Baseball league. It started 9 years ago when my ...son Mike learned the true meaning of teamwork dedication from some very amazing coaches throughout the years. Michael has been fortunate enough to continue to play with the same teammates and coaches. He and I are very thankful.. This year marks probably the last year as he playing in the 22u college age team...We are truly thankful for the commitment this league has shown to all the players and families throughout the past 9 years and for many more...

Amy Rudolph

Delmar

 

Over $100,000.00 into it and it looks pretty nice. Thank you Bethlehem Mickey Mantle, Inc. for making Field #5 one of the best baseball fields in the Capital Region.  Town says "Bethlehem Braves Won't Be Denied A Field To Rent", oh sure but at a 357% increase! The new fee is $50.00 a game, instead of the $100 a week fee being paid now each season. A 357% Increase! On top of the over $100,000.00 that the Club has put into the rented field over the past 9 years.

S. Peterson

Bethlehem

 

So tomorrow is most likely the last day I'll suit up in an 1864 outfit, dressed to play ball.
If you haven't seen the Times Union newspaper, this year will be t...he final year of our Vintage Baseball game against our friends and foes from Long Island, the New York Mutuals.
And it hasn't really hit me yet...

Being apart of this wonderful game is truly an honor. Each year, I enjoy putting on that hot and heavy uniform and put on a show for the fans and having a fun time doing so. I always felt like this was the baseball version of the Harlem Globetrotters. It truly is an entertaining experience as I used to be a spectator.
It really is a shame that there are people out there who just don't appreciate what you do and why, and want to take away all that you've worked toward.

My father, Steve Peterson, has done a lot for me and a lot for this area around the wonderful sport we know as baseball, and I'll always be grateful for those opportunities.

Tomorrow is a day to be with our loved ones and reflect on our nation as a whole and be thankful for what we have, both personally and collectively. Almost everyone has plans to be with family and friends at 4th of July parties, and you should be. But if you are in the area and can spare some time to come over for one last time and watch the final July 4th 1864 Vintage game at Elm Avenue Park in Bethlehem, we would all appreciate that continued community support you've shown these past several years.

Game time starts at 1pm. (Bethlehem Town Park Field No. 5 next to the pool.) Our snack shack will be open with cold refreshments and food, as its forecasted to be a beautiful (yet warm) summer day.

For those that haven't been there, it's a family friendly experience, so bring everyone. We'll include you all, teach you about the game and bring you back in time for only a couple hours. Pictures with the players before and after the game are welcomed.
Not to mention, we'll be on several local tv stations.

Thank you to everyone who has come out to support us. Thank you dad and the Mutuals for making this possible each year.
And I hope to see you all there! Its been a pleasure. *Tip the cap*

Josh "Sweet Pete" Peterson

Bethlehem

 

There are a few among us who have a real passion and love for the game we call our National Pastime. Over a 8 years ago I was contacted by one such person. His passion for the game, his thirst for knowledge and genuine love of community brought my club, the New York Mutuals to his town in upstate New York. He wanted what so many of us that play the game of vintage base ball want, to share the origins of baseball with the people of the area. Through the next 8 years we met wonderful people, played against and educated his players and fans as to how the game was played in 1864. They took to the game like no others and made it part of their 4th of July tradition, one that we were very proud to share. While on the outside we played the part of opponents, on the inside we were cut from the same cloth and a bond was formed between our teams. Last year was the first their team came to beat us but in our eyes these gentlemen were always winners! It was with deep sadness that we learned that for various reasons this will be the last year that we will get to share the game with our fellow ballists from Bethlehem. Many thanks to the man that brought baseball history to the area and introduced to his community. Steve Peterson you will always be considered an ambassador to the game and a role model for all.

Hoorah Steve!

Our hats off to you!

Tom Fesolowich - NY Mutuals

Bethpage, NY

 

Mr. Michael Hallisey, Managing Editor - Spotlight.
I have been watching the Bethlehem field usage issue closely as I was in a similar situation as a coach of a Travel girls’ softball team for many years. In 2000 we left the Tomboys program at a time when many of the other higher level players from the organization (as well as other community programs in the Capital District) joined or formed teams with the goals of providing our kids with better opportunities. Facility and field usage was always an issue, even back then, and we did our best to keep it affordable which was difficult. With a team made up from girls from several different towns, we probably had the most players from our own community at 4 or 5 of the 13 players. At that time, we didn’t even pay for field use, as for the most part, it was on a first come basis. Requiring the amount they now want is absurd. Are you also telling me you are going to start checking all of the users that are enjoying the parks etc. to make sure their group is 90%? I think not and it saddens me that these fine groups are being singled out. Even Tomboys, who now recruit from outside our community to maintain membership, are in jeopardy of this rule.
As I listen to the reasons for why this situation has become such a debate and witness the specific targeting of Mr. Peterson and his baseball group, I am disgusted at how the Town of Bethlehem is “rewarding them” for their hard work and dedication to our children. For years now this program has taken it upon themselves to construct, repair, and care for their home field when the town could not afford it themselves or just didn’t care. Now all this effort and financial investment is being stolen like some modern day Robin Hood where they not only can’t get preference to reserve this field, but are being charged exorbitant rates to use it when they do. Are you telling me that the cost to maintain this field by the town outweighs the benefit of what these folks donate(d) to its care in addition to thousands they already pay? I don’t buy it for a second and see this as just another money grab and chance for John Clarkson to flex his muscles of control to BULLY our residents into paying more to utilize something already built and paid for. Lest you forget that having our kids occupied with sports helps to keep them off the streets, substance abuse free and out of mischief. Just another selfish act by the town administration.
It seems like every day I wake up to find that those who have not been a part of building this fine town are doing something new to tear it down and make it what THEY want. I continue to encourage everyone to stand up, get involved and speak their mind to protect what we have built. It not too late!

David Harrington

Bethlehem

 

Thank you Steve for your efforts to improve our town. Not just the tens of thousands of dollars raised by both residents and non residents to improve the quality of our fields, moreover, the quality of life for our kids, who live here and just a few miles outside our town. I'm sure that the kids outside our community appreciate your efforts more than most, as you have done the right thing by welcoming our neighbors to play a game called baseball. You also have taken time out of your own schedule to bring vintage baseball to our community. I wish that there were more people in the Town of Bethlehem willing to commit their time to make the same difference like you have shown. What a great example for the rest of us! Keep up the great work!

Marty Kerins

Delmar

 

Too bad the Town of Bethlehem can't recognize the tens of thousands of dollars in improvements that the Braves have made to the Field #5 and complex and the great opportunity that it provides to the ball players from Bethlehem and the region to play a higher level baseball.
It is very hard to find something that works, even harder to keep something that works going and even harder for government to stay out of the way and not interfere.
I know as a baseball and softball coach... for 17 years and part of the Braves/Frozen Ropes staff that Steve Peterson developed one of the best fields and top tier organizations in the Eastern New York Travel Baseball league.
Bring your July 4th vintage game to the Village of Coxsackie field we would be happy to host such a great event!

Mark Evans
Mayor
Village of Coxsackie

 

And with that folks, we say thank you. Thank you to the Mutuals. Thank you to my father Steve Peterson. And thank you for the eight years of continued support.

But now its up to you Bethlehem. We can continue doing this if you support us beyond today. This town that I live in, learn in, work in, volunteer in, and have supported my whole (yet short) life, is trying to take away days like today. From me. From you. From everyone. All for what? What does the town of Bethlehem gain from taking away?

All the great fans we had today, on behalf of the Braves and myself, thank you for coming out and spending your July 4th afternoon with us. I hope you all had a great time watching and learning how baseball began.

If we don't do this again, I'll miss it... The game and the fans.
Thank you.

Josh Peterson

Glenmont

July 4, 2016 – 12:45 PM

Announcement:

 Due to new Town residency requirements, after 8 successful years this was the final 4th of July Vintage game played.

 

On Monday JULY 4th, 2016

The BETHLEHEM "4th of July"

VINTAGE BASE BALL Game
was played with the Rules of the year 1864 - Civil War era .
 The Bethlehem BRAVES Vintage Team WON 16-7 vs. the New York Mutuals of Bethpage, Long Island. 

Our Special Guest singer of our 

National Anthem and God Bless America

"Rafi the Singing Jeweler"

delivered  amazing patriotic performance.

www.bethlehembraves.com
 The NY Mutuals are based in Old Bethpage Village – Long Island, NY. (web site link)
http://www.nymutuals.com/

 

 

2016 Bethlehem BRAVES - 1864 Vintage team roster:

Joe "Crazy Joe" Monserrat

Josh "Sweet Pete" Peterson

John "Iron Man" Guastella

Tony "Meatball" Sanchez

Tim "Full Count" Fuller

Kevin "Special K" Kraus

Joe "Pay Day" Carrecia

Scott "Get 'Er Done" Bonanno

Mark "Masher" Marshall

Dan "Flash" Fuller

Joe "Hammer" Hauser

Steve “The Prez” Peterson

BRAVES 14 Team open the 2016 Season on Doubleday Field in Cooperstown.

2016 Summer Season Teams:

BRAVES 14, OUTLAWS 16, OUTLAWS 18, BRAVES 23

2016 Summer Season Teams:

BRAVES 14, OUTLAWS 16, OUTLAWS 18, BRAVES 23

 

 

Bethlehem BRAVES Travel Baseball CLUB 

  

 BethlehemBraves@hotmail.com

Contact us at  518-469-8772

 

Upcoming Games & Practices

Saturday, Jul 30
TC Bombers 13 @ BRAVES 1410:00amChapko F2
PRACTICE BRAVES12:00pmBethlehem Elm Ave Town Park FIELD # 5
BRAVES 14 @ Oneonta JR Outlaws 15CanceledOneonta
BRAVES 14 @ Oneonta JR Outlaws 15CanceledOneonta
Sunday, Jul 31
POSITION/TBD @ BRAVES 149:30amBethlehem Elm Ave Town Park FIELD # 5
Devil Cats 19 @ BRAVES 233:00pmBethlehem Elm Ave Town Park FIELD # 5
Devil Cats 19 @ BRAVES 235:30pmBethlehem Elm Ave Town Park FIELD # 5

For a complete schedule listing, click here!

Stewarts Shops - Glenmont