The Reuters global sports blog
from Shop Talk:
Check out where Scotts is staking out new turf.
ScottsMiracle-Gro, the No. 1 U.S. lawn-care company, is taking a swing at winning over baseball fans with its latest sponsorship deal, which allows customers to buy the same grass seed and fertilizer used to grow the lush, green fields at the ballparks of such teams as the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox.
Scotts has signed a multiyear, multimillion-dollar deal with Major League Baseball that includes licensed products, baseball-themed advertising and partnerships with eight of the teams. A source close to the deal who asked not to be identified said Scotts' annual commitments are in the high seven figures, with overall spending on baseball in the eight figures.
"It's a powerful feeling when you walk through the concourse and see that emerald green field in front of you," Scotts brand manager John Price said of entering a ballpark.
"I don't mean to get Field of Dreams-ish, but it's a powerful emotion for consumers and really tapping into that emotion and showing off what Scotts products can do, there's no better product showcase than that," he said in a telephone interview.
The Cancer Project is reminding fans of the Chicago Cubs baseball team of the connection between consumption of hot dogs and the occurrence of colorectal cancer with a billboard outside Chicago’s storied Wrigley Field.
And it's not even the dog days of August, when pennant races heat up.Talks to sell the storied Chicago Cubs baseball team have reopened with a rival bidding group even as negotiations continue with the Ricketts family, tapped in January as the winning bidder with a $900 million offer.Cubs owner Tribune Co, which filed for bankruptcy in December due to its heavy debt load and the weak publishing sector, is now also negotiating with private equity investors Marc Utay and Leo Hindery, three sources familiar with the situation said.The National League team, popular for its "lovable losers" image and national following, as well as its iconic home park Wrigley Field and a stake in a local sports TV network, have been on the block since April 2007, when Tribune Co agreed to an buyout led by real estate magnate Sam Zell.Some of the sources, as well as analysts, believe by adding Utay and Hindery's group to the mix, Tribune Co is seeking to pressure the Ricketts family to settle at terms desired by the media company. Sources had previously said the Ricketts family wanted to mark down the value of the Cubs' broadcast contracts.But the Cubs are used to pressure. After all, their fans have been waiting for a World Series title for more than a century and this year has not gone according to plan as the team has struggled to a losing record.(Reuters photo)