SBD/March 14, 2013/Franchises

Mariners Unveil New "True To The Blue" TV Ads; Commercial Featuring Bison A Hit

The Mariners yesterday unveiled their ‘13 lineup of six TV commercials under a new "True to the Blue" tagline, according to Geoff Baker of the SEATTLE TIMES. This year's “best spot might involve a nonhuman.” In the “Wise Ol' Buffalo commercial, an actual 2,600-pound American bison comes on the field and has a conversation with shortstop Brendan Ryan.” The buffalo commercial “looks to be a hit.” The team “rented the showbiz bison,” and the plotline to the commercial “is that the buffalo can speak English only after eating some special cookies prepared by Ryan -- or at least, that's what Ryan thinks.” It turns out the buffalo “is only relaying the voice of Tom Wilhelmsen through a speaker the Mariners closer has secretly planted on the animal.” Baker writes Ryan's acting “seems the best of any of the nine players in the six spots.” Meanwhile, Mariners P Felix Hernandez “still has his own spot,” and he touts something called "King Felix's High Heat" hot sauce in a commercial titled "Hottest Thing in Town." 2B Dustin Ackley has a spot titled "Ackley Fan Mail" in which he “has to deal with fans making special requests of him.” LF Michael Morse, CF Michael Saunders and 3B Kyle Seager share a spot called "Focused and Relaxed" in which they “discuss clothing items needed to find inner peace and balance on the field.” LF Raul Ibanez makes “a quick appearance” in a spot titled "One Wish" that mainly features a non-player actor. Another non-player spot called "The Lineup" is about “a fan who names his children after Mariners players.” The commercials are “again a collaboration between the Mariners and the Seattle-based Copacino+Fujikado ad agency,” and were directed by “Ron Gross of Mercer Island-based Blue Goose Productions” (SEATTLE TIMES, 3/14). The six spots were released yesterday via the team's website, where viewers can vote for their favorite ad. The spots will begin airing on Sunday during Root Sports' Mariners-Rangers Spring Training telecast and will run throughout the season on local and regional channels (Mariners).
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