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MLB ALL-STAR GAME IS A HIT WITH ADVERTISERS
Published July 6, 1995
Next Tuesday's MLB All-Star Game on ABC "has generated robust sales of commercial time despite sagging attendance at ball parks" and the dissolution of The Baseball Network, according to the AP's Skip Wollenberg. Sales by TBN have hit about $18M -- up 24% from the estimated $14.5M generated from ad sales on '94 Game. Wollenberg writes, "Ad buyers say a resurgent advertising marketplace and the lack of competing sports showcases such as the Olympics helped baseball overcome the legacy of unresolved labor problems, at least for one game" (AP/TORONTO STAR, 7/6). WHAT'S NEXT?: Wollenberg also says "advertisers will be watching" the ratings for sign of fan disenchantment already evident in the 23% decline (through July 4) in average attendance at MLB parks. Ratings for MLB's All-Star Game have risen in each of the past two seasons (AP/TORONTO STAR/AP, 7/6). Arnold Chase of Vitt Media International says MLB has benefited from its multiyear contracts with "big advertisers like Anheuser-Busch, General Motors, Toyota, and MCI on the All-Star Game," but is cautious about the rest of the season. Chase: "Baseball has major problems after the All-Star Game. Most local market baseball is going begging" (AP/WASHINGTON TIMES, 7/6). ON THE RADIO: CBS Radio Networks carry three MLB games each week, "but advertising is down, as are the number of stations carrying [baseball], to 275 from 300 a year ago." Bob Kipperman, GM of CBS Radio: "A number of advertisers have put their money in other areas" (AP/Balto SUN, 7/6).