4 Things That Could Help the Fat Cats Next Season

Just a few weeks ago, the Cats’ Inaugural year came to a close. Many people qualified this season as a success, while some others didn’t. I’m not one of the pessimists–however in my opinion there is definitely room for improvement at Ottawa Stadium next Spring. One thing is for sure though, the Citizens of Ottawa have shown the IBL, and the sports world that baseball isn’t done here yet.

I think that the Cats could still make more money and bring in more revenue than they did in their inaugural year, however it won’t come at just a snap of the fingers. Things can be done to help the Fat Cats next season and in the long run. In no particular order, here is a quick list of things that I believe would benefit OSG and the Cats. If you’ve got some ideas of your own, post ’em in the comments.

Radio, Radio, Radio.

First one on the list is what I believe is one of the most important ones. Having the majority of FC games televised on Rogers isn’t a bad thing, but I think that a Semi-pro baseball team in the Fat Cats’ position is better off with Radio, as oppose to Television broacasts.

I know that I was on the road a lot of the time that the Cats’ were playing, and that I’m not alone when I say that. After all, weekends are busy.

That’s one of the many reasons that the Fat Cats should focus on Radio, and not Television. Which stations could welcome us? There definitely are options with the huge market for radio in Ottawa, but I’ve got to automatically rule out the TEAM 1200 for live broadcasts, since I know that they would never do it. The Fury have a soccer show on the TEAM, and if the Pro team that’s been rumored to be showing up in Ottawa does, then I’m sure that OSG could rope up a half hour for a show, once a week.

I’d have my eye on one of the campus stations for live Play-By-Play, and since the University of Ottawa is fairly close the the Stadium, I think something could be made of that.

Player Publicity.

One of the reasons people would stop watching the Lynx, were because all the good players would come and go after 1 or 2 Seasons–for obvious reasons. This is why it is key for the Cats to make an effort to hang on to their best performers from 2011, onwards. It would be nice if players like Mombo, McGovern, Valesente, Desclouds and Staniewicz stayed on board.

If they do for long enough, and still play like they did this year, those players that I’ve just listed could become household names. Another thing that could help the Cats go household, are things like this. Just take Spezza and his highlights out of that add, and put in somebody like Mark Charrette, with a mash-up of some of his best double plays, or a home run. That may help put more bums in seats.

Using the Outfield Wall.

When I went to Rapidz and Lynx games, what did I see? I saw the outfield wall, bursting with advertising revenue. Now, I’ll take a look out to the furthest dimensions of Ottawa Stadiums, and see.. an add for GARDA.. an add for Bob Monette.. and not much else.

The Cats need to hire a good salesman, and have him or her–no gender discrimination here–fill that outfield wall. That could generate some huge revenue. Just look at the Ottawa Civ- ahem.. the Urbandale Centre at Landsdowne. The 67’s have got the boards covered, the railings separating the seats and the ice draped with cardboard signs, and the wall above the stands (yeah, that one) plastered with advertisements.

Let me ask you something, are the 67’s struggling to fill their building? Are they in financial jeopardy at all? The answer is no, and the advertising revenue that they’ve brought in is likely more than half responsible for it.

The Winter.

It’s gonna be a long time before we see baseball in the Capital again, however if the Cats approach the Winter with a glass-half-full attitude, it could be one of the best seasons for Ottawa. See, we have a mascot. A couple public appearances by Ottawa’s favorite Kitty (besides Spartacat) during the winter months, at places such as 67’s games, Museums, Winterlude, the Bell Capital Cup or possibly this place, could do wonders for the Fat Cats and baseball in Ottawa.

The possibilities don’t end there either. The Cats could make some public appearances themselves,and try to create a stir. Anything that’ll help the Ottawa Fat Cats etched into the minds of the Citizens of Ottawa for more than must one measly season.

That’s all for now, folks. Sorry for the lack of posts lately, but the season is over and unfortunately there just isn’t much to blog about. Don’t expect to see that many posts on here until the snow melts, or something big happens.

    • Pierre
    • August 2nd, 2010

    There are a few things you say to which I attribute being young and little life experiences.

    Outfield wall. I’m sure the Fat Cats have thought of that. Advertising is a great source of revenue. Couple of problems. First, the group found out way too late that the season was a go to put that as a priority. Second, if they did approach local businesses, which they likely did, their job was not easy. Existing advertisers with the Rapidz surely balked and even new ones were probably extremely skeptical.

    Plus, the local season was only 11 home dates. Not a lot and advertisers probably figured it was not worth it. Now, if we have a pro team playing 47 home games next year as well as the Cats adding another eleven or so, and a successful season at the game this year, then you have something to sell.

    Monette’s ad was probably as a favour for helping. I thought maybe he was going to run for mayor as well. Garda, they were the FC’s security people. Likely the Cats couldn’t afford their asking price and offered free stadium advertising as a bonus. I can’t remember the others, I think Dr Pepper was one, again, as part of the package to promote them. Likely the Cats did not make any advertising revenue.

    Winter. Problem here is the long wait for the baseball season to start. Sure you develop an identity but if I see Grape in November, is that helping me remember in May to attend baseball games? Another problem is, why would the Sens and/or the 67s allow the Cats to advertise their product? They are in competition for the same entertainment dollar!

    The idea is good in practice. I don’t remember however Lennie or Skratch doing much, if any, appearances during the winter, not that I followed them during the winter. Have they ever been to 67s games?

    Same for player publicity. Agree that a team needs to have some continuity. I don’t think any will ever become household names however. Not in this league. This is the sort of thing you do for a professional team. Even then, player turnaround is fairly high. For example, the Capitales have only six players still on their roster from 2008, a seventh is now their manager. For Pittsfield, I count just one. I didn’t check the other teams but I suspect they fall somewhere in between.

    Radio. Agree again that radio is crucial in establishing a brand and a fan base. But that won’t happen for the Fat Cats. Not for a dozen games, not for a semi-pro team. Not when the Lynx could not get any station interested in 15 years (I’m talking a large percentage of games, home and away). The Rapidz had the French station, very likely thanks to Miles Wolff. The Lynx had Internet broadcast their last two years but you need more than that.

    Television is incidental. It helps but I’d rather have radio as well. The reason is that Rogers needs to fill its schedule on the community channel with something local and baseball fills that nicely. If not for laws that says Rogers needs to do this, there wouldn’t even be television.

    A professional team will need radio in my opinion. Will it happen? I’m pessimistic on that point. I don’t think the university stations would be interested. Let’s get a team first.

    Having a half-hour radio show each _day_ on a station like the Team would be nice. You also need a weekly television show on Rogers. Even better if it can be pulled off, on CTV. Can’t be any worse than the stuff they show on the weekends. Let’s not forget the French population too but I think I’m really dreaming now.

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