After tonight’s NBA Draft, you can crank the AC up to 11 and stock up on freezer pops because we’ll officially be in the dog days of summer. Yeah, I’m talkin’ heat, but I mean the sports dearth, too, that comes with it. Basketball’s over, hockey’s over, there isn’t an Olympics or World Cup this year, and other than tight ends catching murder charges, we’ll have to wait until September for football season (Week 1 starts on Sept. 5th for everyone but Aaron Hernandez). All we have is baseball, which is perfectly fine for some, but when SportsCenter Top Plays are just the night’s Web Gems, well, I grow a little antsy; long games turn into long nights turn into long weeks turn into long months turn into long sentences, and don’t nobody want that. Which is why baseball teams have promotional nights; to lure dormant sports fans out of their chilled viewing dens with free swag. Below are the best promotional nights the Yankees and Mets are offering this summer. Bring a friend, bring your girl, and walk away with something other than ballpark stomach cramps.
Sunday June 30 Mets vs. Nationals — David Wright Bobblehead Night
At this point, David Wright is a living legend. He’s projected to hit 26 homeruns with a .305 batting average this season, which would be the sixth time he’s hit at least 25 and .300. He’s the picture of consistency and never makes headlines for off the field BS. Mets fans love him, and Yankees fans can’t help but respect him. There are loads of bobblehead nights across the board, but maybe you go to this one and Mr. Met does something epic against a division rival.
Thursday July 4 Mets vs. Diamondbacks — All-Star Gnome Night
Straight up, who doesn’t love gnomes. Unless you have a severe case of gnomophobia, you should be planning on snatching up this little guy and planting him on your desk, in your garden, it doesn’t matter. HE’S A GNOME PLAYING FOR THE METS IN THE ALL-STAR GAME. We had a gnome in the office once but that dude broke, and so did our hearts, so don’t play around; bring bubble wrap or keep dude in his box until you’re safe at home. Yes, this the 4th of July, but its a day at the ballpark! Make collecting gnomes your new family tradition.
Wednesday July 10 Yankees vs. Royals – Dunkin Donuts Gift Card Night
Go to a baseball game and get a gift card? That’s some direct ROI right there. This is most likely only for $5, but who cares?? Can you put a price on ice cold refreshment? No, you can’t. Dunkin Donuts let’s you drink caffeinated ice cream through a straw. That’s butter pecan goodness flowing. Through. Your. Veins.
Thursday July 11 Yankees vs. Royals — Car Air Freshener Night
Yeah, you could cop any old air freshener for your car, but is it going to smell like Alex Rodriguez’s gaping disappointment? Or the steam coming out of Brian Cashman’s ears? The plummeting stock of Mark Teixeira? No, it’s not. To be fair, this probably won’t smell like any of those things either and those are pretty undesirable smells, so consider yourself lucky you’re avoiding them.
Friday July 19 Mets vs Phillies — Nas Postgame Concert
Known Mets entusiast, Nasty Nas will perform following the July 19 game against the Mets arch-rival, the Philadelphia Phillies. Come for the ball game, stay for the performance by one of the most iconic rappers of all time. Not too bad. Will they be playing “Made You Look” when a Mets pitcher strikes someone out looking? “I Can” when Ike Davis is at bat? “Destroy & Rebuild” when the Phillies are introduced? Here’s to hoping.
Monday July 22 Mets vs. Braves — Mets Headphones Night
If you lose headphones every other week, then add to your stock pile with these blue and orange over-the-head joints. You can listen to future Mets broadcasts with them, or the above mentioned Nas songs. You can use them to drown out all the flack you’re catching for being a Mets fans or your girl who keeps complaining that you dragged her to a baseball game on a Monday night. The options are endless.
Friday August 2 Mets vs. Royals — Irish Heritage Night
Attending this game will be about two things: getting stammering drunk on a Friday night in the name of The Emerald Isle, and walking away with a green Daniel Murphy jersey tee. Look at that thing. It’s got ‘Wardrobe for the next 10 St. Patrick’s Days’ written all over it. The number on the back is colored like an Irish flag. Stop reading and preorder tickets now. The shirts are limited edition and only go to the first 1,000 preorders.
Friday August 9 Yankees vs. Tigers — Mug Night
Drink frosty brews like Prince Fielder with this Yankee mug. Every good cupboard needs a good beer mug and think about all the games you’ll be able to kick back with it for. You’ll hand it down to your son, and he’ll hand it down to his son, and your entire lineage will drink Buds out of this mug while watching the Yankees bypass 30 championships like it’s second base.
Monday August 12 Yankees vs. Angels — Old School Pennant Night
They flat out call it “Old School.” How sick is that? Not “Vintage” or “Historic,” but “Old School.” I want that, and I’m not even a Yankee fan. There’s no picture, so we’ll just have to speculate what the pennant will look like, but the evening is sponsored by Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews, which have been nothing but generous to me.
Thursday August 22 Yankees vs. Blue Jays — USB Adapter Night
This looks like a car charger that requires you to have your own USB, which means that the Yankees are here to help you keep your phone (and let’s be honest, sanity) alive. That’s awful sweet of them. Seriously though, throw this bad boy in your center console and you’ll be singing high praise to the Steinbrenner’s for years to come.