McCullers: MLB is the worst marketed league in America

MAD Radio
July 19, 2018 - 4:43 pm

© Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports

Astros pitcher Lance McCullers joins Mad Radio every Thursday at 8:20am, and discussed the topic of Major League Baseball marketing its players during this morning's visit.

"We have the worst marketed league, in my opinion...of the three major sports, in the United States. I don't know why that is. I think that the other sports leagues understand that the product that you have, the more people are interested in that product, especially, [it's going] to sell," McCullers said. "I think that the MLB, for a long time, has just always believed that baseball will sell because it's baseball, and I think that it's starting to catch up to us."

"I think that's why you saw more phones out at the All-Star Game, that's why you saw more interviews. They're trying to have these players become actual people to the fans, versus just players," McCullers said. "In baseball, there's so many games, there's a lot of players, twenty-five of us...it's hard to make every single individual person...their own brand. It is tough." 

Lance was asked for his thoughts on MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred offering what seemed to be a criticism of Angels star Mike Trout during All-Star week.

"Player marketing is dependent on having the player. I think Mike Trout could raise his profile tomorrow if he decided that he wanted to engage a little more fully, give up some more of his free time. And that's his choice. That really is his choice," Manfred said. "What player marketing takes in today's world, you've gotta be willing to be out there on social media, you've gotta be willing to put yourself out there, and you have to devote time to it. We do think about it, and it is a priority for us."

Trout has responded to Manfred's comments , saying "I have received lots of questions about Commissioner Manfred's recent statement. I am not a petty guy and would really encourage everyone to just move forward. Everything is cool between the Commissioner and myself. End of story. I am ready to just play some baseball!" 

McCullers also brought up the challenge of players marketing themselves through social media. "Social media is a big part if it, but some people don't enjoy that. I'm starting to get burned out on it. I'm starting to enjoy it less and less over time."

Moving forward, McCullers offered some advice for MLB in how to model its player marketing after other sports. "The overall league needs to do a better job, like the NBA has done, in marketing its players, going on worldwide tours, taking certain players that aren't just the two or three biggest names in sports, taking everyone," McCullers said. "[This would let people understand] that this is what's baseball's about, [and would allow] everybody to get out there, versus just a certain few, and that's something that the MLB is going to have to work on."

McCullers joins Mad Radio every Thursday at 8:20am, brought to you by Trailer Wheel and Frame.