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Ewww: Dodgers Become Latest MLB Team with Sleeve Ad

Although no formal announcement has yet been made, reports from Dodgers camp indicate that the team has sold space on their jersey this season to the team’s own ownership consortium. Here’s another view of it, this time from less of a close-up perspective:

I confess that I don’t fully understand the economics of a team wearing an ad patch for its own ownership group, since any ad fee would presumably come out of the owners’ pockets and end up back in their pockets. Maybe it’s just a bookkeeping move —  shifting revenue from one budgetary category to another, perhaps with some tax benefits along the way. I imagine we’ll find out more when the deal is officially announced.

The Dodgers are the first MLB team to announce a new sleeve advertisement for this season. The move comes after 16 teams whored out their uniforms last year: the PadresRed SoxD-backsAngelsAstros, Reds, Marlins, Mets, Cardinals, Tigers, Guardians, Yankees, Blue Jays, Giants, Brewers, and Atlanta.


Comments (25)

    Looks like “Guggenheim Baseball Management” is (probably) part or a subsidiary of the main “Guggenheim Partners” firm – link

    Not that anything about the gross advertising stuff surprises me, but I must admit I would have thought there would be a rule preventing a team’s ownership from essentially advertising itself. (Though admittedly I don’t know why I would have thought that other than wishful thinking)

    Yeah, I don’t see any reason why they would want to prohibit that. I mean, I’d like to see them ban uniform ads altogether, but I don’t see why ads for the company which owns the team are worse than any other. If anything it shows that the league owners value what they’re selling.

    Remember that day in 1927 when this site exploded after William Wrigley (of Wrigley Gum) changed the name of Cubs Park?

    I remember it well, and then when the Staley Starch Company’s Decatur Staley’s became the Bears people were like “thank goodness outside corporate money is out of the NFL! So vulgar!”

    I find this somewhat less objectionable than most sleeve ads as it’s not really a product you can buy but instead a case of an owner reminding you who owns the team (in the old days they just named the stadium after themselves.) At least it’s not a crypto website.

    I am no fan of sleeve ads, but I find the ones where the owner is advertising themselves or their business less hard to stomach. It somewhat reminds me of the Acme Packers in a way. Another example would be the Miami HEAT and the Carnival cruise lines patch they have. The owner owns both. The cruise industry is giant in Miami and many people who work for the cruise lines or enjoy going to Miami to take cruises can associate with it. Although no one in LA cares about Guggenheim management, it is the ownership group of the team who spends the money to bring the product to the field. It is not just someone saying here is some money put a patch on the shirt. They actually do have a true partnership with the team.

    Sad that deep-pocketed teams like the Yankees, Dodgers and Mets feel the need to whore themselves out for a few million. Seems like the positive PR and fan goodwill generated from NOT adding an ad patch would outweigh that amount. Guess not.

    Unfortunately, I think the sad reality is that most fans — unlike Uni Watchers — simply don’t care. Initially, fans may protest a bit (and certainly here in New York, when the Mets first unveiled their advertiser with its giant patch (link), there was some derision, but it wasn’t even that the team had an ad patch — but rather that the ad was “in Phillies colors.” But it was enough of a backlash that the team created a smaller ad “in team colors” (link), which seemed to mitigate most of the concern. But the response wasn’t so much in opposition to the ad in general, but rather the look of the ad.

    I saw several comments from “fans” that the ad had become “much more tasteful,” as if any ad is “better” or “worse” than another. And I think when it comes down to it, that’s the general consensus among fans. There was no hue and cry in opposition to ads per se.

    It hasn’t gotten to the point where I think European soccer is — fans seemingly base their “approval” of ads on how much they’re paying the team (and how “big” the advertiser is), with some even dismissing teams who are ad-free (for a time) as somehow lesser because they can’t get a big corporation with big bucks to spend on said ad. Of course, ads are a little more defensible in soccer as there are no commercial breaks (even though ads are everwhere else in the stadium/pitch as well as on the chest).

    Therefore, I don’t think most fans view “deep-pocketed teams like the Yankees, Dodgers and Mets” with disdain or even disapproval of uni ads in general. If anything they’re OK with the ads as long as the advertiser isn’t overtly sketchy and the ad itself isn’t too much of an eyesore.

    If we’re gonna have ads, I’d rather have a tasteful ad that matches team colors etc. So in that sense yes, certain ads are better regardless of what it says on it, if it integrates into the uniform better. I’ll take how the Mets did it over Houston any day.

    And I think that encapsulates a very large percentage of fans. Some ads are “better” than others.

    I don’t agree with that — an ad is an ad — but I completely understand the sentiment.

    Lois : Have you designed any buildings in New York?
    George Costanza : Have you seen the new addition to the Guggenheim?
    Lois : You did that?
    George Costanza : Yep. And it didn’t take very long either.

    All right, listen closely, I was at the unemployment office and I told them I was very close to getting a job with Vandelay Industries, and I gave them your phone number. So now, when the phone rings, you have to answer “Vandelay Industries”.

    You’re in latex.

    If by default the teams who don’t have ads all rank above those who do… The Rox have finally cracked the top half of the rankings!

    I feel like there could be a Jackie Gleason/Frank Fontaine bit here, but let’s face it, the Crazy Guggenheim character has aged like milk.

    I can not stand ads on uniforms in any way or form. It diminishes the specialness but it is just the way of the world and if I want to watch sports I have to look at them. I think the Guggenheim ad is somewhat better because they own the company and the team and are an official SPONSOR. The Green Bay Packers originally were sponsored by a packing company. and had the name of their actual sponsor on the uniform.

    I hate uni ads, but I think it’s possible that ownership is paying for its own corporate jersey ad because they think the ad will pay off. Or at least they’ll get some revenue back in addition to other benefits. Or not, I’m no expert. Haha

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