Promotions & Giveaways Review: The AL East

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Over the next week (yes, into the first day or two of the
regular season), I will be delving into the world of promotions and
giveaways.  I want to not only review
what each team is doing for their fans in this 2011 season, but to also put a
fun twist on it and figure out what team wins each division and then overall
the World Series if it were all based off of these free stuff lineups.


I will do one division each day (well, today is AL East,
then another one up tonight, then another one up each night thru Thursday, and
then Friday will be the final judging and playoffs to see who wins the World
Series (of awesome stuff)).


Key to types of promotions/giveaways:

            Primary – The kind of stuff that draws
and extra 5,000 fans or more to the ballpark just to get something

            Secondary – The kind of stuff that will
bring in people who are on the ropes about attending, but most likely will not
have fans jumping out of their seats to get

            Repeats – Whether good or bad, these
are just promotions/giveaways that occur 3+ times on a team’s schedule


I didn’t include things like schedule magnets, koozies, and
stuff like that that are way too widely used amongst most teams, so would
cancel out overall.  There are also many
other scattered promotions on calendars, but I mainly included here the ones
that I thought were worth mentioning and worth traveling to the ballpark for if
you’re the kind of person that needs that extra boost of motivation to go see


First up, the AL East.


Each team name is bolded for emphasis as well as because
they are each linked to their respective promotional schedule pages.


Baltimore Orioles



Buck Showalter Bobblehead (6/25)

Brian Matusz Bobblehead (8/6)


Orioles Cap (6/12)

Orioles Drawstring Backpack (6/26)


T-shirt Thursday (5/12, 6/30, 7/14, 8/11)

2110 Eutaw Street (5/7, 6/11, 7/16, 8/13, 9/17)


Notes: The
Orioles really cut back this year, taking away two t-shirt days and really
cutting down on secondary promos, not to mention fewer bobbleheads after last
year having a trio that connected as well as a full size one, too.  But what could possibly beat a Buck Showalter Bobblehead?

Grade: B-



Boston Red Sox


As of now, the Red Sox have not released a promotional
schedule.  Who knows if they even do any
of that stuff when Fenway sells out anyways.


Grade: F


New York Yankees




2011 Commemorative Cap (4/4)

Grass Seed Planter (5/24)

Jorge Posada Figurine (6/10)

Mark Teixeira Bat (6/12)


Cap Day/Night (6/11, 6/13, 8/10, 8/12, and I’ll
throw in here that Visor Day is on 7/7)


Notes: I found it interesting that nothing on the Yankees
promo schedule really had my eyes popping, you know, with all their money and
such.  But I guess since they draw great
crowds anyways, why splurge on a few over the top items when you can throw tons
of mediocre junk at fans and get the same turnout.  I really stopped after June with caring about
listing each secondary item (10 or so more). 
There are a whole bunch, really. Too many to list.  Which is cool I guess of the organization to
do.  They try to squeeze so many in that
as I’m writing this, there are a few days that still say just “Promotion Item”
which is just funny (8/9, 9/5).


I also found it funny that on each promo, it was ___ ___
Night/Day.  Like Jorge Posada Figurine
Night or Mark Teixeira Bat Day.  On
every. Single. One.  I just didn’t feel
like redundantly including that all above. 
Oh, and everybody should surely attend Calculator Day on 9/4.


Grade: B


Tampa Bay Rays



Evan Longoria Gold Glove Replica Trophy (4/2)

Manny Ramirez Bobblehead (5/29)

BJ Upton Bobblehead (6/19)


AL East Champs Mini Banner (4/3)

Joe Maddon Bank (5/1)

Raymond Pillowcase (5/15)

David Price Superhero Action Figure (8/21)

Evan Longoria Cereal Bowl and Spoon Set (9/4)


Free Shirt Friday (4/15, 4/29, 5/13, 5/27, 6/17,
7/1, 7/15, 8/5, 8/19, 9/2, 9/9, 9/23)

Postgame Concert (4/30 – REO Speedwagon, 5/14 –
Darius Rucker, 8/6 – Goo Goo Dolls, 9/24 – Miranda Lambert)


Notes: The Rays
are REALLY trying to attract kids this season. 
Other than the Replica Trophy at the beginning, every other giveaway is
only for kids 14 & under.  If not for
the t-shirt days (which, I will admit, they have a TON of) and the concerts,
the Rays would have been really cutting off the older groups of people past
childhood.  Another minor kids (14 &
under) promo they have is a fire helmet on 9/11, which I thought was a nice way
to honor that day.


Grade: A-


Toronto Blue Jays



Jose Bautista Bobblehead (4/3)

Roberto Alomar HOF Bobblehead (7/31)


Canada Day T-Shirt (7/1)

T-Shirt ?? (9/18)


Jr. Jays Saturdays (Every. Single. Saturday.)

Tweeting Tuesdays (Every. Single. Tuesday.)

Fan Fridays (Every. Single. Friday.)


Notes:  Only the Blue
Jays would celebrate Canada Day.  So
that’s unique to the Rogers Centre. 
Otherwise, not a ton of stuff, but they have two really good bobbleheads
to go with those repeat days that will make sure that fans stay involved all
season in ways much cheaper than distributing memorabilia.  And props to the team for being the only one
to list Mother’s Day as an event on their promotional calendar.

Grade: C+



Okay.  So the AL East
overall has a bunch of different situations. 
The Orioles are eh.  The Blue
Jays, who say eh, have scarce items, but with their consistent repeats,
probably end up giving stuff away and keep fan morale up.  The Yankees do the same as the Jays with
having something on most every day, even if not top notch, but instead of
repeats, they just came up with as many crappy designs for items as they
could.  The Rays list would be a LOT
better if a lot of the stuff were for all fans, not just kids.  And the Red Sox… well… they just suck.


The winner of the AL East per their promotional schedule


The Tampa Bay Rays.


Though yes, most of their cool stuff is for kids, they have
free shirts on a whole bunch of Fridays for all fans (first 10,000… aka all
fans).  In the end, the kicker was their
postgame concerts.  A baseball game AND a
concert under one ticket?  I’m in.


Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford are just no match to
Darius Rucker and Miranda Lambert.

Follow me on Twitter: @2131andBeyond


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