Pujols pulls in fan dollars

Jeff Tyler Jan 18, 2012

Adriene Hill:In less than a month, baseball starts spring training and Albert Pujols will start getting monster-sized checks from the L.A. Angels. The first-baseman recently signed a 10-year contract worth a quarter of a billion dollars. The question is whether it’s a good investment.

Marketplace’s Jeff Tyler runs the numbers for us.

Jeff Tyler: When the Angels invited fans to the stadium to welcome Albert Pujols to the team, John Kumar was there.

John Kumar: I took my children to the signing, to see Albert Pujols introduced. And we bought his new memorabilia that was on sale right there, his jerseys and his T-shirts.

T-shirts run $27; jerseys cost more than a $100. They’re flying off the shelves at the stadium store. Robert Alvarado is vice-president of marketing and ticket sales for the Angels.

Robert Alvarado: When you have 60 to 70 percent of your merchandise transactions that are Albert Pujols-related, that’s directly related to the signing.

He says season-ticket sales are up significantly since Pujols joined the team.

Alvarado: We’re seeing a 50 percent growth in new season sales versus last year.

Sales of 20-game packages have risen 300 percent. Fans are paying the money to see Pujols deliver. And if he does, he’ll make more money. For example, he’ll earn $7 million if he breaks the all-time record for home runs.

In Los Angeles, I’m Jeff Tyler for Marketplace.

We’re here to help you navigate this changed world and economy.

Our mission at Marketplace is to raise the economic intelligence of the country. It’s a tough task, but it’s never been more important.

In the past year, we’ve seen record unemployment, stimulus bills, and reddit users influencing the stock market. Marketplace helps you understand it all, will fact-based, approachable, and unbiased reporting.

Generous support from listeners and readers is what powers our nonprofit news—and your donation today will help provide this essential service. For just $5/month, you can sustain independent journalism that keeps you and thousands of others informed.