Bryce Harper and Miss Utility

Bryce Harper may be designated to the Hagerstown Suns, but his at-bats now belong to someone else.

For each of Harper's trips to the plate, fans will hear more than just his name and number, thanks to an unconventional sponsorship deal with Miss Utility.

As Harper digs in, the following message will be broadcast over the Suns' PA system:

“Now batting Bryce Harper, brought to you by Miss Utility, reminding you to call 811 before you dig.”

Awkward, yes.

But you can’t blame the non-profit for jumping at the opportunity, something they wouldn’t normally get a chance to do.

“It’s just not possible to sponsor a player’s at bats at the Major League level, and even if it were, it would probably be out of our price range as a safety organization with a limited budget,” said Matt Ruddo, Director of Marketing for Miss Utility.

Apparently ticket prices aren’t the only thing cheaper in the minor leagues.

Brand names have infiltrated just about every part of professional sports, but sponsoring a player’s actions is something that is usually untainted. But it could pave the way for future sponsorships of its kind.

Imagine the possibilities...

“That catch by Bryce Harper was brought to you by Legal Seafoods. Our catch of the day is always fresh.”

“That Bryce Harper stolen base brought to you by ADT, reminding you to secure YOUR home base.”

“Bryce Harper’s jock adjustment is sponsored by Gold Bond, for all of your chafing needs.”

No charge for the idea, Gold Bond.   

Questions, comments or tips? Email Sarah at You can also follow her on Twitter (@sarahschorno).

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