With the regular season right around the corner, it’s definitely time to start planning out your baseball game schedule for the spring and summer. And while you could use normal things like work conflicts, family commitments and holidays to help you decide which games to attend, there’s a much better idea: use the team’s promotional schedule so you can snag the best giveaways!
Every team gives out souvenirs during the season, but not all giveaways are created equal. Some teams go beyond the standard schedule magnet or tote bag. And some go way, way beyond. Here’s our guide to the 10 best giveaways of the 2017 season, sorted by date for your scheduling pleasure.
April 8 – Pittsburgh Pirates – Francisco Cervelli singing bobblehead
There is nothing not to love about this insanely awesome bobblehead. It’s got Francisco Cervelli, but he’s not in his uniform. He’s in a Pirates smoking jacket, just like he was in this video where he gave out some incredibly useful romance tips. And the figurine doesn’t just bobble; it also sings “That’s Amore” by Dean Martin, which is Cervelli’s walk-up song.
April 16 – Toronto Blue Jays – Bringer of Rain umbrella
If Josh Donaldson is the bringer of rain (as his Twitter handle suggests), the Jays want their fans to be prepared. This umbrella is blue (of course), and the inside features a series of images of Donaldson in his batting stance, going through the process of hitting a home run. Because why should passers-by be the only people who get to experience a great design on an umbrella? This way, when you’re walking through the rain, you can see Josh Donaldson doing what he does best: hitting baseballs.
April 19 – Seattle Mariners – Ichiro Suzuki dual bobblehead
When the Miami Marlins come to Seattle in April, the Mariners will be ready. They’ll be celebrating Ichiro, one of their franchise’s best-loved players, with a bobblehead commemorating two of his greatest baseball accomplishments. One side of the bobble has Ichiro in his Mariners uniform from 2004 to celebrate his 262-hit season, and the other side has Ichiro in his Marlins uniform from 2016 to celebrate his 3,000th career hit. Because what’s better than one Ichiro? Two Ichiros!
April 30 – San Francisco Giants – Hunter Pence window cling
Out of every team, the Giants have the most interesting, creative and downright rad giveaways. Part of it is luck, of course. They happen to have a bunch of players who have memorable personalities and/or playing styles. But they’re doing an exceptional job having fun with it. They’re doing a caped backpack for Brandon Crawford, a Buster hugs blanket for Buster Posey, and a Shark snow globe for Jeff Samardzija. But the best of their player-themed giveaways is their Hunter Pence window cling. Despite the fact that it looks absolutely nothing like him, they’ve somehow captured his essence and spirit. It’s something about the hair and the smile, it’s very Pence-like. Plus, the plush figure has suction cups so he can hang on your window, which is something Pence would definitely try to do if he was 10 inches tall.
May 13 – Chicago White Sox – Hawk Harrelson alarm clock
Isn’t Hawk Harrelson’s face the first thing you want to see when you get up? The White Sox certainly hope so! They’re giving away an old school alarm clock with Hawk’s face on the dial. Presumably the alarm clock has a bell, but wouldn’t it be great if it could have Hawk yelling at you to get up every morning? Actually, probably not.
May 20 – Baltimore Orioles – Maryland flag script jersey
The state flag of Maryland is crazy, colorful, and completely awesome. And the Orioles apparently agree, because they’re giving out a jersey that features that flag in a creative way. Inside the script of the normal Orioles logo, they’re using the pattern of the Maryland flag. No other state flag is like Maryland’s, so why not embrace it?
July 23 – Tampa Bay Rays – Chris Archer emoji pillow
The player emojis that MLB came up with a few years ago continue to be great. Some look nothing like the players they’re supposed to be representing, but some actually do. In fact, Chris Archer’s emoji looks eerily like him, and the Rays are taking advantage. They’re putting Archer’s emoji face on a pillow, and on the other side is his last name and jersey number. It’s positively delightful, just like the delightfully positive Chris Archer.
Aug. 1 – Chicago Cubs – Cubs ice mold
The Cubs are taking full advantage of last year’s World Series victory with plenty of championship-related giveaways. They’re giving out replica trophies, bobbleheads of the final out and a championship parade confetti globe (instead of a snow globe). But one of their coolest giveaways is also the most useful. They’re giving out a circular ice mold, that will either feature the Cubs logo and baseball stitching (so it looks like you’ve put an ice baseball into your drink) or the Cubs World Series Championship logo.
Aug. 13 – Milwaukee Brewers – Bob Uecker 8-ball
This is the kind of giveaway that you never knew you needed until you heard about it. An 8-Ball that gives you answers in the form of Bob Uecker’s famous sayings. There’s just a sample rendering on the Brewers website, but it features the answer “Get outta here!” I’m not sure what question that would answer, besides “Should I stay or should I go,” but it’s awesome regardless.
Sept. 4 – Boston Red Sox – Dennis Eckersley hat
You might be wondering “what makes this hat a Dennis Eckersley hat?” It’s hair. The hat has hair on it. A lot of hair. And also a mustache, somehow. The rendering on the Red Sox website doesn’t give a lot of clues about how this hat will be constructed, but it will definitely have long hair and a mustache. And who doesn’t need a hat with a fabulous mane of fake hair?
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