Mr. Joe-tato Head, bobbleheads among giveaways
PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Last year, Rays manager Joe Maddon was immortalized in the form of a garden gnome giveaway. This year, Tampa Bay has taken it a step further. Enter Mr. Joe-tato Head.
The Rays released their 2014 promotions schedule on Tuesday, a list that features premium giveaway items on 18 Saturdays and Sundays throughout the season. The highlight was undoubtedly the Joe Maddon Mr. Potato Head, which will be handed out on Aug. 2, when the Rays host the Angels at Tropicana Field.
"All this stuff here, it's just part of a lot of the crazy stuff that we do that's also highly complimentary at the same time," Maddon said. "I'm happy to be lionized as Mr. Potato Head, and also knowing that my Polish grandmother used to eat potatoes on a daily basis."
Also included this year are the Wil Myers Rookie of the Year bobblehead (April 5), DJ Kitty Plush Hat (May 10), Chris Archer Christmas Stocking (July 27) and Evan Longoria '80s Hair Band Drummer bobblehead (Sept. 6).
Sundays will once again be Family Fun Days, presented by the Tampa Bay Times. Every Sunday home game will feature free parking for cars with four or more passengers and postgame activities for kids. There will also be special kids promotional items on Sundays, including a Desmond Jennings Baseball Buddy (April 6), Ben Zobrist Wiffle Ball Set (June 22), Yunel Escobar Basketball Hoop (July 13) and Matt Moore Kids Plate and Cup Set (Aug. 31).
On Mother's Day (May 11), the first 10,000 women will receive a Rays Sun Hat. As an early Father's Day celebration on June 8, the first 10,000 men will receive a James Loney Grill Set.
The Rays are also bringing back the Tampa Bay Times Ticket Tandem program, where fans can purchase a special ticket for Friday games that includes an exclusive, limited edition keepsake. Ticket Tandem items include an Alex Cobb Military bobblehead (May 23), Don Zimmer Snowglobe (July 25), Maddon Wine Glasses (Aug. 1) and mascot Raymond Gnome (Aug. 29).
Regular-season single-game tickets will go on sale March 1 exclusively at raysbaseball.com. The Rays are offering a new Flex Pack system -- available in three-, six- and nine-game packs -- through which fans can select their games now and save over 50 percent off regular pricing.