Report: Dan Uggla to sign with the Giants

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Following his release on Friday, Dan Uggla cleared waivers today and became a free agent. Ken Rosenthal says he already has a home:

Not shocking given the Giants’ clear need at second base and the fact that, from the moment Uggla was no longer a Brave, reports started popping up about the Giants’ interest in him.

Can’t beat the price. With the Braves on the hook for the nearly $19 million left on his contract through next season, he’ll be paid a pro-rated amount of the big league minimum. For that money it’s at least worth a shot to see if a change of scenery can get Uggla to at least approach his old form. It’s not the Giants haven’t had some success with this approach in the past. See, Pat Burrell, Aubrey Huff, etc.

Uggla is hitting .162/.241/.231 on the season and lost his job to rookie Tommy LaStella.

Report: Mariners enter into a ballpark naming rights deal with T-Mobile

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Maury Brown of Forbes reports that T-Mobile will be the new naming rights partner for the Seattle Mariners’ ballpark beginning in 2019. Their park had been known as Safeco Field since it first opened in the summer of 1999. The 20-year naming rights deal with Safeco ended with the close of the 2018 season.

Brown reports that the deal will be around $3 million a year, which doesn’t seem like a whole lot. Then again, I have long been skeptical of how much naming rights actually bring back to the naming rights partner. That’s especially true when the partner is slapping its name on a ballpark that was known as something else beforehand. People tend to still use the old name and, I suspect, resent the new one a bit. Maybe that’s less the case when the park has only been known by corporate names, and no beloved traditional name is being displaced, but I still question if anyone really makes a single purchasing decision based on the name of a ballpark.

I know this much for sure, though: despite the relatively small cost of naming rights here, none of the most notable Seattle-based companies — which include Amazon, Starbucks, Nordstrom, Microsoft, Costco and Alaska Airlines — felt it was worth it. Possibly because they know people are gonna call the place “Safeco” for several years regardless.