A guide to the new Blue Jays economy
The success of the Blue Jays has imbued the city with a dose of team spirit. Suddenly, throngs of fans are lining up to buy official merch—not to mention game tickets, which even before all the postseason craziness were selling on the secondary market for double face value, or more. Who else is trying to cash in on this potentially fleeting wave of fandom? Here, as the team heads into its first postseason game in 22 years, is a guide to the new Blue Jays economy.
Tim Hortons’ Toronto Blue Jays donut—a vanilla-dipped, sprinkle-covered confection with raspberry filling—has been available in the GTA during home games throughout the season for the past three years. It costs a few cents more than a comparable non-baseball-themed donut.
Budweiser makes a team-sponsored “6ix Pack,” which hit LCBO stores on September 28, just as the Blue Jays were clinching their playoff spot. It costs about a dollar more than the original case.
CuffLinks.com’s Toronto Blue Jays cufflinks feature a crisp logo on a silver setting. The set sells for about $10 more than the average pair. Overall, the website’s Blue Jays merchandise sales are up nearly 50 per cent this year compared to last, according to company president Paul Song.
Price: $60 a pair
All-star pitcher David Price’s arrival in late July was a gift to headline writers, who quickly set about making a lot of clever (and not-so-clever) puns using his last name. An Etsy seller slapped one of those on a t-shirt.
Price: $22.77, before tax and shipping
The Drake General store sells a couple different designs. The Pixel Blue Jays Tee is for lovers of birds, baseball and ’80s video game graphics. For $10 less, there’s another tee, with a team logo surrounded by some Japanese writing. The store’s marketing manager, Kate Chippindale, says the Drake chain has sold around 10 times as many Blue Jays tees as it did during the same period last year.
Price: $48 for the pixels tee, or $38 for the Japanese one
The Button Machine offers limited-edition “Toronto Poo Jays” buttons. For less adventurous fans (or anyone who doesn’t find the poo/Blue Jays pun that funny), there are also more straightforward Jays buttons. Owner Chris Aslanidis, a longtime fan, says sales have peaked in recent weeks. He’s seen an increase of close to 900 per cent over last year.
Price: $1 each
For those looking to follow the team on the road, Blue Jays sponsor Expedia recently launched a dedicated page for planning trips. All of the Jays’ potential away-game locations are preloaded into a drop-down menu, making it maybe five per cent easier to book flights and hotel rooms.