Recently, the companies responsible for organizing retired baseball legend Cal Ripken, Jr.’s baseball camps (“Ripken Companies”) were sued for patent infringement. The Plaintiff in this case is Zito, LLC, a company owned by Arthur J. Zito, Jr. (“Zito”). In its Complaint Zito alleges that it owns two patents which cover a “User-Specific Dispensing System,” namely U.S. Patent No. 7,398,921 and 9,443,369. The Ripken Companies are alleged to conduct baseball camps, clinics and skills training seminars using a baseball practice machine called the “Fungoman® FM-250.” According to its Complaint, Zito is asserting that the Ripken Companies’ use of the “Fungoman® FM-250” baseball practice machine infringes on its two patents. Zito alleges that the Ripken Companies’ infringement is willful because the Ripken Companies allegedly had notice of Zito’s patents as of March 10, 2014 when Mr. Zito listed his patents in an employment agreement with the Ripken Companies.
Zito is seeking damages in the form of profits, enhanced damages and attorneys’ fees and costs. This case is currently in its early stages and we will be monitoring the status of this case. Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding the information in this article.
Daniel Devine, Esq.
Santucci Priore, P.L.