SOURCE: The Clutch Hitters

The Clutch Hitters

March 10, 2010 10:08 ET

Private Business Group, The Clutch Hitters, Urges Tampa Bay to "Support OUR team"

Public-Service Campaign Encourages Businesses and Others to Attend Rays' Games and Purchase Season Tickets and Sponsorships

TAMPA BAY, FL--(Marketwire - March 10, 2010) -  A private group of Tampa Bay business leaders supporting the presence of Major League Baseball in the Tampa Bay area is launching this week a public-service campaign to encourage businesses and individuals to attend Tampa Bay Rays' games and purchase season tickets and sponsorships. The group, called The Clutch Hitters, which was founded in September 2008 and is not associated with the Rays organization, consists of approximately 80 of Tampa Bay's most influential business leaders.

The public-service campaign kicks off with 30- and 60-second radio and television public-service announcements that begin running this week "thanks to the cooperation and generosity of Brighthouse Networks, Clear Channel Communications and others," according to David P. Feaster, president, The Clutch Hitters, and president and CEO, Cornerstone Bank, St. Petersburg. 

The 30-second spots state the following: "Remember the fun of going to a Tampa Bay Rays game? The smell of hot dogs. The sound of fans cheering. All knowing the Rays are OUR team. The Rays invested millions in the off season to retain and attract some of baseball's best players. Now, it's OUR turn to show OUR support. More fans. More season-ticket holders. And, more sponsors. Make your commitment today to the Tampa Bay Rays ... OUR Team!"

"The Clutch Hitters felt the Rays organization stepped up in the off season to show its strong commitment to fielding a highly competitive team that represents the Tampa Bay region so well," said Feaster. "And, we felt it was important for our group to reinforce the importance of the team to our region -- and to foster a further sense of fan loyalty by referring to the Rays as OUR Team. The Clutch Hitters campaign will encourage Tampa Bay businesses, in particular, to commit to attending more games, purchasing more season tickets and becoming a sponsor or expanding their existing sponsorships."

The 60-second spots also make this point, "The typical Major League Baseball team sells two-thirds of its season tickets to businesses. The Rays are getting by with only one-third -- relying on individual fans to purchase the majority of its season tickets. Both large and small businesses in Tampa Bay, which benefit from the economic impact of a Major League Baseball team in our community, need to step up with stronger support."

Studio and production-staff time to produce the radio and television spots were donated by the City of St. Petersburg. The spots were directed by Anita Treiser, St. Petersburg-based public relations consultant. Voice-over and on-camera talent used for the spots is Jeff Caponigro, Tampa Bay voice-over artist, actor and model. Caponigro also is the President and CEO of Caponigro Public Relations Inc., based in downtown Tampa.

A special "OUR Team" logo was designed by Jon Rottenberg, St. Petersburg-based design artist and marketing professional.

In addition to the radio and television public-service announcements, representatives of The Clutch Hitters will make special presentations to business groups and will work through the news media to encourage them to support the organization's vision as well.

In the weeks ahead, according to Feaster, the campaign will expand to include posters for businesses to display and road-side billboards throughout Tampa Bay. 

For more information about The Clutch Hitters visit