MLB Still On Pace To Reduce Game Times Thomas Wants To See MLB Inner-City Academies MLB National Viewership Off To Good Start Mets Outpacing Yankees In Early Season Ratings S.F. Law May Ban Tobacco At AT&T Park Sponsors Stayed True To Paul George New Tech Changing Ballpark Designs Rock Comically Addresses Lack Of Black MLBers K.C. Star Demands Aramark Fix Food Issues NASCAR Broadcaster Steve Byrnes Dies At 56
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Published March 18, 1998
AUTO RACING: The NASCAR collectibles market was examined by Marc Benjamin in the BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN. Popular items include die-cast metal cars, mini helmets, T- shirts and caps. Larry Collins, VP of Mesa Marin Raceway: "Race teams make more money from souvenir sales than from prize money [or] sponsorships" (CALIFORNIAN, 3/17). ...Action Performance Cos. Inc., which designs, markets and distributes licensed motorsports merchandise, announced plans to settle two pending lawsuits. The company will take a one-time charge of approximately $900,000, or about $0.03 per share (Action Performance). FROM THE BREWERIES: Miller Brewing "is restaging one- time flagship beer" Miller High Life with new ads breaking in April. The spots are created by OR-based Wieden & Kennedy, and will air on MLB broadcasts, the NBA Finals and on primetime TV. An under-the-cap summer promo from MO- based Zipatoni will offer consumers a chance to visit four famous ballparks via a match-and-win tie-in to Fox baseball (BRANDWEEK, 3/16 issue)....Rheingold beer, an original sponsor of the Mets, will use Mets old-timers Ed Kranepool and Tommy Agee as pitchmen for the relaunch of the brand. Also "in the works" is a million-dollar pitch promo at Shea Stadium in August, which "may include a celebrated Met pitcher as spokesman" (Terry Lefton, BRANDWEEK, 3/16). NOTES: VT-based Burton Snowboards is using a Lotus Domino Internet application that allows Burton and their design team, JDK, to post designs, images and additional product information where riders anywhere in the world can view them and provide feedback in real-time (Burton).... National Car Rental has inked with Fox to be the presenting sponsor of next month's Santa Anita Derby. National will have "category-exclusivity and five 30 second spots" for the April 4 event (MEDIAWEEK, 3/16)....Since the end of his holdout, sales of Red Wings F Sergei Fedorov's merchandise "have dropped off at Metro Detroit sporting goods shops" (DETROIT NEWS, 3/17)....ASICS Corp. announced a two-year Platinum Sponsorship of the Idaho Women's Fitness Celebration 5K, September 19 in Boise, ID (ASICS).