Jacksonville-based Winn-Dixie grocery stores, one of the "most lucrative and long-standing sponsors" of the Jaguars, has ended its association with the team, according to Drew Dixon of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. Winn-Dixie Senior Communications Dir Brian Wright said, “It was not a snap decision. Both parties decided not to continue the sponsorship.” Jaguars Senior VP/Communications & Media Dan Edwards said that it had "nothing to do with the franchise’s performance on the field in recent years and finishing 2012 with a 2-14 record." Edwards added that Winn-Dixie was "likely among the biggest sponsors of the franchise." Edwards "would not disclose any potential companies" to replace Winn-Dixie. But he said, “Certainly that’s the intent to replace that category." Wright said, “We remain huge fans of our football team and believe (owner) Shad Khan and (President) Mark Lamping are making the right changes" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 7/17).
Marketing and Sponsorship
Several players during last night’s All-Star Game, including Mets P Matt Harvey and 3B David Wright, Orioles CF Adam Jones and Tigers P Max Scherzer, wore “incredibly garish orange footwear,” according to Ted Berg of USA TODAY. It appeared that every player “whose team wears partially orange uniform showed up for the All-Star Game in entirely orange shoes." Harvey said, “It seemed like everybody was wearing something pretty flashy tonight. I guess the theme of this year’s All-Star Game was the flashy cleats. I was talking to David (Wright) and asked him if he was going to wear his and he said, ‘Yeah. You’re not going to wear them during regular games so you might as well wear ‘em now while you can’” (USATODAY.com, 7/16). Fox' Tim McCarver said of Scherzer’s cleats, “I usually have golf balls that color so I can find them.” Fox' Joe Buck: “I think he got them from the same vendor as Adam Jones out there in centerfield” (“MLB All-Star Game,” Fox, 7/16).
COLOR COORDINATING: In DC, Amanda Comak noted while Nationals CF Bryce Harper "wore blue spikes in the Home Run Derby on Monday that had an orange reflective top with the skyline of New York City etched into them, he had a similar pair ... in his locker for Tuesday night’s game." They had a "red base" (WASHINGTON TIMES, 7/17).
During yesterday’s MLB All-Star “Parade of Pickup Trucks and Ballplayers” through NYC, "it was hard to identify” players since they were “dressed in ordinary clothes, without numbers on their back," according to Jim Dwyer of the N.Y. TIMES, who writes under the header, “A Parade of Advertising, Starring Players.” As a "visual aid, each truck had the name of the player posted on the side.” The parade is "essentially a television commercial for pickup trucks, with ballplayers serving as ornaments." N.Y. since '08 has "started charging groups that hold parades." Although parts of Midtown Manhattan were "paralyzed for stretches of the day," MLB got "the 'small' event rate -- $100,000." One of the All-Star events was at a Subway sandwich shop in the Flatiron district. Subway spokesperson Jared Fogle, who had been in K.C. last year to give away sandwiches when the All-Star Game was held there, said, "In Kansas City it was an event for the ages." But Dwyer notes, "Things were a bit different in New York." Fogle said, "It's the mecca of the world. You guys are used to doing it all the time" (N.Y. TIMES, 7/17).
FRENEMIES: In Newark, Eliot Shorr-Parks noted the mascots of the Phillies and Mets -- the Phanatic and Mr. Met -- were "featured in a MasterCard commercial during the Home Run Derby on Monday night." The spot featured the "two rival mascots coming together -- and overcoming a history of pranks -- to do some good" (NJ.com, 7/16).
GETTING THE MESSAGE OUT: During Fox’ All-Star Game telecast last night, 37 commercial units belonged to MLB sponsors, including spots from Chevrolet, T-Mobile, MasterCard, Anheuser-Busch, Pepsi, Bank of America, Gatorade, Firestone, Head & Shoulders, Taco Bell and Bayer. Five MLB sponsors also had brand new advertising during All-Star Week to unveil a new product, service or initiative, including Chevy, T-Mobile, MasterCard, A-B and Pepsi (Austin Karp, Assistant Managing Editor).
CRUSHING THE COMPETITION: In Baltimore, Chris Korman noted sales of Orioles 1B Chris Davis jerseys "are, of course, soaring." Data from online retailer Fanatics.com shows that they were "up 200 percent in June compared with May." Davis merchandise "sold better than that of all but eight" MLBers. For the companies that "own rights to sell official Davis gear, business is good" (Baltimore SUN, 7/16).