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MLB All-Star Week 2023: Seattle Pulled Out All the Stops for a Successful (and Impactful) Event

T-Mobile, Mastercard, and Capital One activated for fans in and around T-Mobile Park.

When it comes to the economic impact of the event, Visit Seattle forecast an initial figure of $50 million.
When it comes to the economic impact of the event, Visit Seattle forecast an initial figure of $50 million.
Photo: Courtesy of Seattle Mariners/Claire Pulkownik

From July 7-11, the center of Major League Baseball was Seattle, home to the Mariners and host of the game’s 2023 All-Star Week—one of the most exciting weeks in baseball for fans, and what was surely a home run for the sport itself, its sponsors, and Seattle’s tourism economy.

While the final economic impact to Seattle is still being measured, Tammy Blount-Canavan, president and CEO of Visit Seattle, forecast an initial figure of $50 million, a target that will likely be exceeded once the final numbers are in. MLB All-Star Week was an entirely different event for the city compared to something like a playoff series.

“During NHL, WNBA, or MLB playoff series, there is generally a break between two games and then the teams head out on the road for the away games," she explained. "Visiting fans may attend one game and then return home. MLB All-Star Week was five straight days of official events and community activations. This allowed visitors to book consecutive hotel room nights, which meant more meals at our restaurants, increased visitor spending throughout our retail community, and more time to explore our destination as a whole.”

The National League pulled out a dramatic 3-2 victory over the American League in the 2023 MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.The National League pulled out a dramatic 3-2 victory over the American League in the 2023 MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.Photo: Courtesy of Seattle Mariners/Claire Pulkownik

With most of the week's official events anchored to or near T-Mobile Park, things officially got underway on Friday, July 7, with the introduction of the first-ever HBCU Swingman Classic presented by T-Mobile. Saturday saw both the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game and the All-Star Celebrity Softball Game presented by Corona. Prior to MLB All-Star Week, Visit Seattle anticipated sold-out crowds of over 47,000 fans at T-Mobile Park for both the Home Run Derby and All-Star Game. Over 100,000 fans were projected at other events during the week, including Capital One PLAY BALL PARK at Lumen Field.

A highlight of the festivities came on Monday, with Toronto Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. winning the T-Mobile Home Run Derby, proving to be this season’s biggest basher. 

Things culminated in spectacular fashion on Tuesday night when the National League pulled out a dramatic 3-2 victory over the American League in the 2023 MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard, snapping the AL’s run of nine consecutive wins (the second-longest streak in All-Star Game history).

MLB sponsors had plenty of exciting opportunities to showcase their brands throughout the week, perhaps none more than T-Mobile. Returning as Home Run Derby title partner and, of course, title sponsor of the Mariners ballpark, T-Mobile certainly "extended its coverage" in Seattle, retouching the Emerald City with even more complementary shades of magenta than usual.

T-Mobile collaborated with MLB’s technology group to develop the MLB Next app, an augmented reality app for fans inside the ballpark to track hits and player activity during the Derby and All-Star Game.T-Mobile collaborated with MLB’s technology group to develop the MLB Next app, an augmented reality app for fans inside the ballpark to track hits and player activity during the Derby and All-Star Game.Photo: Courtesy of T-Mobile

Breaking the boundaries of color palettes everywhere, the All-Star Red Carpet Show presented by T-Mobile featured (you guessed it) magenta carpet. The mobile giant also collaborated with MLB’s technology group to develop the MLB Next app, an augmented reality app for fans inside the ballpark to track hits and player activity during the Derby and All-Star Game. T-Mobile gave away branded headphones to fans entering the ballpark for the Derby for fans to use with the MLB Next app, which also featured low-latency audio of the national radio broadcast.

During the Derby, T-Mobile also promoted Project 10Million, an initiative dedicated to bringing internet connectivity to millions of underserved students.

Nelly performed at T-Mobile’s Derby After Dark Party on Monday, July 10. Other celebrity guests at the event included Anderson .Paak, Julio Rodríguez, and Alex Rodriguez.Nelly performed at T-Mobile’s Derby After Dark Party on Monday, July 10. Other celebrity guests at the event included Anderson .Paak, Julio Rodríguez, and Alex Rodriguez.Photo: Courtesy of T-Mobile

But it wasn’t all magenta all the time. Mastercard once again was presenting sponsor of the All-Star Game and had signage throughout the ballpark, across the city, and at numerous points of purchase at event sites. It was also presenting sponsor of the first Food Truck Row at MLB’s hallmark fan festival, Capital One PLAY BALL PARK. Mastercard worked with MLB’s DEI team and the Mariners to find diverse-owned, small-business food trucks and give them a platform to sell directly to baseball fans.

Mastercard also worked with MLB and Candy to create custom commemorative NFT tickets for all ticket holders.

The 2023 game marked the AL’s run of nine consecutive wins (the second-longest streak in All-Star Game history).The 2023 game marked the AL’s run of nine consecutive wins (the second-longest streak in All-Star Game history).Photo: Courtesy of Seattle Mariners/Claire Pulkownik

Capital One title-sponsored Capital One All-Star Village and Capital One PLAY BALL PARK, the centerpiece of All-Star fan activity outside the ballpark. Capital One’s footprint inside PLAY BALL PARK included a walk-off simulator, photo op, and cap giveaway. It offered exclusive cardholder perks including special early/extended hours and access to MLB legends including Edgar Martínez, Félix Hernández, and Bret Boone; a VIP entrance and express lanes; plus dedicated autograph sessions and a retail shop.

Capital One also sponsored the cooling towel gate giveaway at T-Mobile Park prior to the All-Star Game.

It wasn’t only the week’s main events that drew in sponsors. Corona was presenting sponsor of the All-Star Celebrity Softball Game for the first time. Corona Adirondack chairs were on the field for participants to lounge in. Nike was the first-ever presenting sponsor of the MLB Draft, which took place inside PLAY BALL PARK on Lumen Field and had over 5,000 attendees on Sunday.

Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales were at PLAY BALL PARK each day and on the field prior to the All-Star Game. They also brought back their "Hit the Buds" signs in the outfield during the All-Star Game, which would have triggered free beer for a year for a winner.

Most of the week's official events were anchored to or near T-Mobile Park.Most of the week's official events were anchored to or near T-Mobile Park.Photo: Courtesy of Seattle Mariners/Claire Pulkownik

Chevrolet sponsored the All-Star Game MVP Award. Instead of giving a car to the MVP, it donated three 2024 Trax SUVs to military and community-based charities. Chevy had vehicle displays at PLAY BALL PARK and on the red carpet. It also sent six sponsored interns to Seattle to report on the HBCU Swingman Classic. The 2024 Trax was a key focus in commercials.

When asked what made this All-Star Game â€śuniquely Seattle,” Blount-Canavan said, “We engaged in an unprecedented level of collaboration with stakeholders throughout our community to incorporate some of Seattle’s most singular landmarks into MLB All-Star Week: a drone show at the Space Needle, free film screenings at Seattle Center, and the All-Star Red Carpet Show at Pike Place Market.

"The Visit Seattle team also worked closely with the Seattle Monorail, Seattle Center, Climate Pledge Arena, and muralist Brady Black to bring about the first-ever art installation on the monorail’s guideway columns," she continued. "These murals featured eight MLB superstars and eight Seattle sports fans, signifying the connection between baseball and community."

Seattle won’t stop hosting anytime soon, either. Upcoming events in the Magenta-Emerald City include the NHL Winter Classic, the 2025 NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament, and the 2026 FIFA World Cup. 

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