baseball season

Apple and MLB

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America's favorite pastime is going high tech.

The company behind some of the world's most sought after devices has struck a multi-year deal with Major League Baseball to put iPad pro tablets in the dugouts. According to the Wall St. Journal, instead of their usual notes on pen and paper coaches and managers will now use a tablet preloaded with software called “MLB Dugout.”

The app will give them statistics, allow them to access video of past games and analyze specific match ups between pitchers and hitters. Commissioner Rob Manfred calls the deal a natural progression for the game and makes things easier for coaches and managers who are used to lugging around files of information on their opponents and own players.  read more »

A High Scoring Business Plan

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The owner of a Texas furniture store is using sports to drum up some extra business; and the customers are scoring.

Before the first pitch was thrown for this year's baseball season Jim McIngvale offered to reimburse the first 500 customers who spent more than $6,300 at his stores. But he would only hand over the cash if the Houston Astros won more than 63 games, matching the age McIngvale would turn this year.

And they did, winning 70 games and forcing McIngvale to be true to his word. So recently hundreds of people lined up and he paid up, to the tune of more than $4 million. Reid Ryan, president of the Astros, said the promotion was a great way to get more people involved in the season and excited about the team.  read more »

Aiming to Please

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A minor league baseball stadium in Pennsylvania is aiming to please sports fans.

For people at the Lehigh Valley IronPigs Coca Cola Park a bathroom break doesn’t mean the fun has to stop. The park has installed video game in the urinals of men’s rooms. The games are aimed at increasing prostate health awareness and work by challenging players to steer their way through a snowmobile course while trying to hit cartoon penguins.

Throughout the game messages will pop up reminding men to make an appointment to get checked out. And the entire game is hands free so you better make sure your aim is up to par.  read more »

Behind the Scenes

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Baseball season’s opening pitch is just one week away; and the players aren’t the only ones warming up.

Dennis O’Donnell is the sports director at KPIX; a CBS affiliated television station in San Francisco. I recently spoke with him about his experience covering bay area baseball for the past thirty years.

“The game is on a whole different level than it was 20 years ago, but the funny thing is its still two lines, hit the ball it’s still baseball.”

O’Donnell says these days his job requires a creative edge. Thanks to the internet game highlights are old news by the time his show airs. So he has to find a different type of story to tell. But the one thing that has remained consistent is the characters.  read more »

The Business of Baseball

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Baseball season is one week away and the players are hoping to score more than the winning run.
For 17 years Vida Blue pitched for the San Francisco giants, Oakland A’s and Kansas City Royals; winning three World Series. I recently talked to him about the sport of baseball and the business of staying in it.

“It’s constantly changing, the owners are really savvy with how they sign players and the players are real savvy on how they approach getting their raises.”  read more »

Filling the Stadium

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When it comes to baseball; the most important people are not always on the field.

Larry Baer is President and CEO of the San Francisco Giants. A team that has won two World Series rings in the past three years. And while the franchise appreciates a win Baer says baseball has become a brand and his customers need more than just a winning season.

“The fans that come here, the clients that come to this ballpark we want to give them a good experience with everything we can control.”

Baer says this means filling the stadium with good food, friendly staff and a lasting experience. Baer says regardless of the final score every fan should go home happy.  read more »

Business Outside Baseball

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America’s favorite pastime is being hit out of the park.

Every spring, baseball fans across the country pack into stadiums to root for the home team. But if they can’t score a ticket; they turn to the next best thing. That’s big business for Peter Osborne, who owns MoMo’s restaurant across from the San Francisco Giants home field. He credits the team’s success for his own.

“It’s changed my life I’m not going to lie to you. I think it’s changed the city’s life as a matter of fact and its part of that evolution. It’s a dynamic, vibrant ingredient to every major metropolitan area.”  read more »

The Business of Baseball

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Baseball might have a six month season but for some players the game never stops.

“This is a business that is getting bigger and bigger and is really many different businesses all rolled into one.”

Larry Baer is the CEO and owner of the World Series winning San Francisco Giants. Baer says winning games is the primary business but he is also in the entertainment, customer and community service business. Baer says over the past 20 years the sport has evolved and there is something in it for all types of fans to enjoy. This helps organizations fill stadiums and bring in three million fans a season; especially because the competition is not only on the field.  read more »

A Tasty Business Plan

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Diving into the restaurant industry; the right flavor can’t be found in the kitchen.

“There are three primary ingredients to successful restaurants; location, location, location.”

Peter Osborne is the owner of MoMo’s. A popular restaurant located right across the street from AT&T Park; home of the World Series winning San Francisco Giants. Osborne says restaurants are part of a diverse portfolio and while people might advise against it the key is to know exactly what you’re doing. And Osborne’s idea to build in an up and coming San Francisco neighborhood paid off when ground broke on the ball park. Now a lot of his business revolves around the team. In the past few days Osborne finished renovating the restaurant just in time for the new season and the fans.  read more »