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Partnership Reports

Giving Regional Brands Global Reach with MLB Jersey Patches

March 28, 2024

Jersey patches––which made their highly anticipated debut in MLB last season––will undoubtedly take center stage, during Opening Day today, in the league’s sponsorship landscape again this year, as teams seek strategic partners for this high-visibility asset.

Notably, local sponsorships dominate jersey patch deals: a staggering 82% of the current 17 MLB jersey patch partners hail from the same market as their respective teams––underscoring teams’ unique connection with their local fan bases, showcasing the importance of community, and giving many brands both national and global visibility.

That said, 43% of MLB teams are still without a jersey sleeve partner going into the 2024 season. Categories poised for a potential partnership in pro baseball this year––based on their existing prevalence in jersey patch deals in other major pro sports leagues––include technology, food products, consumer products, business services, and transportation.

A few teams with open jersey patch opportunities and prospective target brands, from the categories above within the teams local markets:

  • Philadelphia Phillies: LifeBrand, PenTeleData, and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS)
  • Texas Rangers: Yeti, Nutrafol, and Jack Black 
  • Chicago Cubs: CDW, Impact Networking, and Access One

Last season, digital ads on videoboards, ribbon board digital ads, backstop rotating banner ads, outfield wall ground-level signage, and backstop fixed signage ranked as the most sought-after assets within jersey patch deals––highlighting brands’ perennial preference for high-visibility advertising formats that engage fans during pivotal game moments. Surprisingly, most of these partnerships did not include branded TikTok posts, signage projected on playing surfaces, and sponsored in-game TV features/segments. Only time will tell if these high-exposure assets will become more popular in forthcoming jersey patch partnerships this year. 

Looking ahead, 2024 MLB jersey patch deals seem ripe for innovation: the coming season could witness a paradigm shift in sponsorship strategy, as brands increasingly embrace the largely untapped potential of digital and interactive assets. By integrating more digital elements, like augmented reality experiences, that are geared towards fan engagement––both in-stadium and through social media channels––brands can make an indelible impression by offering fans a dazzling glimpse of the technology-driven future of sponsorships. 

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