Monday, January 8, 2007

This Time Of Year

Years ago when I started traveling to other ballparks, I got into the habit of writing to every major league team to ask for a pocket schedule, so I would have the complete major league schedule in advance. This made it easy to plan trips. I also made a point of finding odd occurrences so I might be able to go for a look. Nowadays, each team posts its schedule on its website so I don't have to buy a bunch of stamps.

But it was fun to see each team's marketing skills (or lack thereof) at work. Each had a different design for its schedule. Some sent ticket order forms, some didn't, even though I requested them. Some teams sent additional little souvenirs like window stickers or iron-on patches. Some came within a week. Some didn't show up until the start of the season. Some had easy-to-read schedules with clear fonts and color schemes, lining up the months vertically so one month blended into the next; some were a real chore with a million different colors depending on what time of day the game started and information scattered all over the place. There were a variety of abbreviations for teams' names. Pittsburgh could be either PIT or PGH. PGH? Huh? Philly could be PHI or PHA. PHA? Do, Re, Me, Pha? Montreal could be MON or MTL, Houston as HOU or HSN, Boston as BOS or BSN.

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