Even the 99 Cents Only stores are picking on Manny Ramirez

Posted on Thu May 14 2009


Why should late-night comedians be the only ones having fun at Manny Ramirez's expense? The power-hitting bad boy of the Los Angeles Dodgers, if you recall, was recently suspended for 50 games for flunking a drug test. Now, and one regional marketer has slipped in a sly reference to the situation in a full-page print ad. The 99 Cents Only stores, beloved for crude homemade ads that could pass for ransom notes, is touting a dietary supplement called Men of Iron as "nature's answer to enhance performance." Whatever your drug of choice, the retailer says it's "tested positive" for the best deals in town. The ad also hawks a bunch of cucumbers just opposite Men of Iron, but execs at headquarters say that was just a Freudian slip.

—Posted by T.L. Stanley

Dodgers' marketing department pretty pissed at Manny Ramirez

Posted on Fri May 8 2009

Manny copy

Just when I was ready to plunk down my $25 for a dread wig to wear while I watched a game from the Mannywood section of Dodger Stadium, I learn that I won't be doing either. In case you haven't heard, Manny Ramirez, one of baseball's highest-paid players, will be cooling his heels for the next 50 games because of a failed drug test. (His team commemorated the occasion Thursday by losing 11-9 to the worst team in the majors, the Washington Nationals.) Manny's suspension means not only a lot of miffed fans but a marketing migraine for Dodger management, as the lion's share of this spring's advertising has revolved around the power hitter.
  Yanked are the radio, TV and Web ads centered on Ramirez and the tagline "I'm back," a nod to last season, where he helped lead the Dodgers to the division title. That's being replaced with "This is our town," starring celebrities and other players. Also history, according to the Los Angeles Times: the Mannywood section in left field, along with its two-tickets-and-Manny-T-shirts package. (Folks who already bought those can get their money back.) Ramirez swag like bobbleheads and replica jerseys will still be around, they just might be a lot harder to find on Dodger stomping grounds. There will be no dreadlock wigs at the team store, for instance, and no Ramirez T-shirts at kiosks on the field level. The game's recurring problem child is expected back in July, with decisions to be made later on how to showcase his return. Sports history being any indicator, if he starts knocking them out of the park right away, the selling might just take care of itself.

—Posted by T.L. Stanley



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