Friday’s ad is for Narragansett, from 1961. After the tragedy in Boston and the swift capture/killing of the perpetrators last night and today, I thought an ad with the Red Sox was in order. This one shows Boston’s schedule for the 1961 season, and shows a cask of the Rhode Island beer emblazoned with the tagline “Straight from-the-Barrel Taste.” It’s hard to believe that was what they were going for in 1961, or that people would respond to such a claim.
Today’s infographic is from Save on Brew showing the MLB Stadium Beer Price Breakdown. Although it’s from 2012, the prices are probably similar, even if they’ve likely gone up a bit. But since it’s opening day for this year’s baseball season, now is a good time to start saving since the prices at games are so outrageously overpriced.
Wednesday’s ad, as the first game of the World Series begins, is from 1955 for Knickerbocker Beer. Calling itself “Your World Series Favorite,” it must have tough for the New York City beer to choose sides, as the world series that year was between the New York Yankees and the Brooklyn Dodgers. The Dodgers won the series in seven games. Go Giants!
Wednesday’s ad is for Miller Lite, from 1982. Given Matt Cain’s amazing perfect game earlier tonight for the Giants, I thought a baseball ad would be appropriate. In this case, it’s “Mr. Baseball” Bob Uecker and his self-deprecating humor. Still, it’s pretty funny. “Great ballplayers drink Lite because it’s less filling. I know. I asked one.”
Friday’s ad is also for Hamm’s, showing their support for the local baseball team, the Minnesota Twins in 1961. It actually looks like the ad may have been on the back of a game program. Either way, the “Win! Twins! We’re with you all the way” rah-rah sentiment” was undoubtedly designed to foster brand loyalty.
Today was media day at AT&T Park, where the San Francisco Giants play. It’s not the kind of event I’m normally invited to, but this year is a little different. Debuting this season at the Giants’ stadium is Anchor Plaza, a new area behind the giant scoreboard where fans can find beer from Anchor Brewing, among other related goodies.
Which is located out of sight, behind the scoreboard. It looks like it could be a great place to get away from the crowds for a spell, and enjoy an Anchor Steam Beer. There are large screen televisions back there so you won’t miss the game while you sip your beer.
ESPN had an interesting little item today by Jim Caple entitled Pitcher Finds Good Use For Mariners’ Bats. The story concerns Seattle Mariners relief pitcher Chris Ray. In addition to pitching for the Mariners, Ray is also an avid homebrewer and has plans to open his own brewery, along with his brother Phillip, in Virginia. They’ve even picked out the name, COTU Brewing, which stands for “Center of the Universe.”
In Caple’s story, Ray is making beer using a dozen baseball bats, made of maple, for a charity beer he brewed at the nearby Fremont Brewing in Seattle. In the article, Ray is quoted about his beer.
“I’m not sure if it adds a ton of flavor, but it ties it into baseball and gives it a unique twist,” Ray said. “It might add a little bit of flavor, but maple is a hard wood — that’s why they use it for bats — so there’s not a whole lot of absorbing going on. There are a lot of beers that age on oak chips and toasted oak chips, so we just thought if it added a little flavor, great. If not, it’s a nice story.”
The beer, dubbed Homefront IPA, is a charity beer to honor American soldiers and debuted at Safeco Field this past weekend and will also be available in 22 oz. bottles beginning this week. Proceeds from sales of Homefront IPA will go to Operation Homefront, an “organization that provides emergency financial assistance to the families of military personnel.”
NBC Sports also had the story back in June about when the beer was first brewed. But the best account comes from Kendall Jones who writes a firsthand account of the brew day for his Washington Beer Blog in a post entitled A Relief Pitcher of Beer.
After the beer was brewed, the beer was then aged on Louisville Sluggers donated by the bat company. According to Jones:
The maple bats will be used to lend some extra character to the beer. They will be added to the conditioning tanks. Some of bats will be left whole and pristine, others cut into smaller pieces to help enhance the flavor imparted on the beer. Once the beer is ready, the whole bats will be removed, dried, and autographed by Chris’ teammates. The bats will then be auctioned off to raise money for Operation Homefront.
UPDATE: The CEO of the hops company Yakima Chief, Steve Carpenter, sent me a funny link about Ray that appeared in a Seattle fan blog, U.S.S. Mariner. In the post (which I should point out at the end is revealed to be satire), Chris Ray’s enthusiasm for good beer is gently skewered.
One reliever noted that Chris Ray had gotten “pretty annoying” by foisting dry-hopped XIPAs on his teammates, whose tastes tended towards lagers and mixed drinks. Eventually, the aspiring brewer went down with an injury and is now on the 15 day disabled list. Another pitcher confessed he was excited for the change. “Look, it’s finally warm out, I want to go out with my girlfriend and have something fun. I like Chris, but he was always rambling on about ‘simcoe’ and ‘amarillo’ and I was thinking he was talking about the Texas League or something, but no, he’s just explaining — again — why the beer I’m drinking is stupid.”
Today in U.S. District Court, for the Southern District of New York, Anheuser-Busch InBev filed a lawsuit asking for a declaratory judgment against Major League Baseball. In “Anheuser-Busch, Inc. v. Major League Baseball Properties, Inc.,” ABI alleges that MLB “reneged on a renewal of its beer sponsorship rights this year and demanded ‘exponentially higher’ fees.” Back in April of this year, ABI believed it had reached a deal to renew its long-standing status (over 30 years) as the “official beer of baseball,” but apparently the baseball league tried to renegotiate the deal “due to ‘a change in marketplace dynamics,’ according to the lawsuit.” Naturally, MLB was seeking to increase the amount of money they would receive from ABI and also wanted to negotiate with rival beer companies for the same rights. The lawsuit asks the court to enforce the April deal and further prevent “MLBP from negotiating with any other brewers for sponsorship rights. The lawsuit doesn’t request money damages.” Baseball’s position is that the April deal was not binding and that they could “offer sponsorship rights to Anheuser[-Busch]‘s competitors.” In addition to sponsoring the league as a whole, Anheuser-Busch also sponsors 26 of the total of thirty individual baseball teams in MLB.
In an effort to help the Giants win for the last win in Game 2 — and being superstitious — I met an old friend of mine from Pennsylvania (actually we were in kindergarten together, making him my oldest friend) who was in town on business Thursday. We met at the 21st Amendment Brewery to watch the game. Hop Crisis, 21 A’s Imperial IPA was tasting fine, as was their regular IPA. I also had one of Rodger Davis’ IPAs from Drake’s (I was in a hoppy mood).
From the moment I got there, I knew we would win, because karma was with me. First of all, I found a parking space directly across the street from 21st Amendment and then not only was co-owner Shaun O’Sullivan there with a seat for me, but he was wearing one of my logo shirts! Thanks Shaun!