With spring-training games beginning this week, MLB teams have announced their 2018 spring training promotions. Along with ticket specials and discounts, special events include giveaways that rival the offerings fans can expect during the regular season.
In general, teams are offering fewer promotional items than in prior years: spring-training attendance has been strong, so the need to lure in fans has been lessened. Some teams still remain committed to spring training promotions, and here are some highlights.
The Baltimore Orioles have a full slate of promotions. On Opening Day (Feb. 23), all fans will receive a 2018 spring training magnet schedule, and the first 1,000 female fans will receive a Bird of Paradise flower. On February 24, the first 7,000 fans will receive an Orioles Greyscale Cap when the Orioles host the Minnesota Twins at 6:05 p.m. Additionally, the first 5,000 fans attending the March 10 game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at 1:05 p.m. will receive a Manny Machado Starting Lineup Figure. Finally, the Orioles will also wear specially designed green caps for St. Patrick’s Day on March 17 against the Toronto Blue Jays at 1:05 p.m. at Ed Smith Stadium. The game-worn caps will be autographed, authenticated, and auctioned online to benefit the Marie Selby Botanical Gardens.
The Tampa Bay Rays are launching spring training at Charlotte Sports Park on Feb. 23 with a Blake Snell bobblehead for the first 1,000 fans. Also on tap: a Chris Archer emoji pillow on March 11 to the first 500 kids 14 and under, and a Rays Win alarm clock on March 18 to the first 500 kids 14 and under. Finally, Rays swim goggles are scheduled to be given away on March 25 to the first 500 kids 14 and under.
The Minnesota Twins are to set to once again stage Minnesota Day, one of the team’s annual spring traditions. Scheduled for March 4, the event will include tailgating opportunities, while many Minnesota natives will be on hand with the flags of their home towns. On that afternoon, the Twins will host the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Philadelphia Phillies have scheduled Alumni Day for March 4. Expect plenty of chances to meet former Phillies greats at tables set up on the concourse.
No giveaways at Camelback Ranch-Glendale, but the home of the Chicago White Sox and Laos Angeles Dodgers is running several discounts. On Sundays, children ages 12 and under may purchase a $5 lawn ticket (limit of four per full-priced adult special), and run the bases after the game. On Monday-Wednesday games, seniors age 65 and over, active and retired members of the military receive 50 percent off Infield Box or Baseline Field Box tickets. These specials are available only at the box office the day of the game.
There are plenty of promos at Goodyear Ballpark, home of the Cleveland Indiansand Cincinnati Reds. Like most spring-training venues, Goodyear Ballpark offers active and retired members of the military, as well as Guard/Reserve personnel, a deal for all games: a free game ticket in Outfield Box, Outfield Reserved or Berm seating. The Senior Saver Pass gives seniors (55+) an Infield Box ticket with a $5 food voucher for just $25. For Reds fans, a Mr. Redlegs F-35 bobblehead giveaway is set for Feb. 24. For Indians fans, a Trevor Bauer giveaway is set for March 3.
Finally, the San Francisco Giants have a single promo planned for 2018: A Matt Williams bobblehead will be given away to the first 10,000 attendees at Scottsdale Stadium on Feb. 27.