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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. Tickets remain available for the Virginia baseball program’s seventh annual Step Up to the Plate benefit on Saturday, Jan. 31, from 6-9 p.m. at Memorial Gymnasium. The featured speaker will be Charlie Manuel, manager of the 2008 World Champion Philadelphia Phillies.

Tickets may be ordered in person at the UVa Athletics Ticket Office in Bryant Hall, by phone at 1-800-542-UVA1 or online at Tables may be reserved by calling 800-626-8723. Proceeds from the event will go to the Virginia Baseball program.

Ticket prices are $60 for adults and $35 for children 12 and under and Virginia Baseball alumni. Sponsored tables for the event are $2,500 and include a reserved table for a party of eight, eight general admission baseball season tickets and admission to the pre-event reception. There is also a group or team special with the purchase of 20 or more tickets. The pre-event reception will begin at 5 p.m.

The night kicks off with an autograph session with the 2009 Virginia baseball team and silent auction at 6 p.m. A buffet barbecue dinner will begin at 7 p.m. Following dinner, Manuel will speak to the event audience, and a live auction will close the evening. The silent and live auctions will include autographed memorabilia from Virginia and the pros, as well as game tickets and more.

Step Up to the Plate has proven to be a special and entertaining evening during its six-year history, with each event featuring a notable speaker, including current St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa (2003), Baltimore Orioles Hall of Famer Cal Ripken Jr. (2004), Hall of Famer and former Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda (2005), Hall of Famer and former Orioles third baseman Brooks Robinson (2006), Hall of Fame second baseman Ryne Sandberg of the Chicago Cubs (2007) and current Red Sox manager Terry Francona (2008).

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