Opening Day is… next month! What a sentence to utter if you are a baseball fan or New York Mets fan. With the season on the horizon, the Mets announced their full promotional schedule for the 2024 season on Wednesday and it’s always a highlight of my Mets fandom, especially having worked the giveaway distributions on game days for seven seasons with the team.
This year, I thought the marketing team did exceptionally well with the non-bobblehead giveaway items, and I think these items, in particular, will get fans to show up at Citi Field this season.
1) Mets Promotion: Piazza Mercury Mets Replica Jersey (July 27)
For the younger audience reading, this is an incredible, yet infamous, throwback jersey. In 1999, most MLB teams did a “Turn Ahead The Clock” promotion in which teams imagined what baseball would look like in the 2020s. July 27 is the 25th anniversary of the Mercury Mets promotion at Shea Stadium, which featured the outer space design with the symbol of the planet. This is a perfect giveaway for the millennials that grew up watching Mike Piazza carve out his Hall of Fame career in Queens.
2) Mets Promotion: Hawaiian Shirt (June 15)
The Hawaiian shirts are a popular giveaway and are perfect for those who fire up the grills during the summer. I’ve always spotted fans donning the Hawaiian shirts the team gave away in 2019, which tells you what they like. The Mets were supposed to hand new ones out in 2020 by popular demand, but COVID hit, and fans weren’t allowed in the stands. They make their overdue return this season on June 15, right before the meat of the summer heat hits New York.
3) Mets Promotion: Hogwarts House Scarves (April 27)
Imagine being a Harry Potter fan waking up to this crossover? April 27 is Harry Potter Day at Citi Field and this giveaway is part of the team’s buildup to their trip to London in June. The Mets will give away the same scarves made famous in the movie series, except these scarves have the Mets logo on the other side of the different house logos.
I don’t know how the distribution on game day will work, but my hope is that the first 15,000 fans get all four designs, because having the collection would be incredible for the crossover. Professor McGonagall would surely award10 points to the marketing house if that happens.
4) Mets Promotion: Mr. Met London Telephone Booth Bobblehead (May 11)
There are some strong bobblehead designs this season, but this ode to a symbol of British pop culture is the best with Mr. Met inside a London telephone stand. This is another one of the giveaways centered around the Mets’ trip to London this summer.
5) Mets Promotion: Pickleball Paddle (July 25)
I wish the paddle giveaway was earlier in the season so fans could use it in June and most of July. Nonetheless, props to the marketing team for catching on with the latest craze in Americana that has spanned all generations. This should be a rare weeknight giveaway that the team will run out of paddles before first pitch (weather permitting of course), so plan to get to the ballpark early that night if you want this.
Honorable Mentions: Brandon Nimmo Bobblehad (July 12) and Francisco Lindor Streetwear Bobblehead (July 29)
Finally, Brandon Nimmo gets his own bobblehead day at Citi Field, and why not in year two of his eight-year contract. Meanwhile, Francisco Lindor gets another bobblehead day, this time fitting more closely with the urban culture of New York City. That makes sense.