Popular Posts

Monday, October 15, 2012

Seattle Mariners Nintendo History # 4

We have talked about the many different businesses that Nintendo has been in in the past. Nintendo is primarily seen as a video game company but in the past they almost seemed to be able to do anything. This seems to have waned in recent years to where they focus on their core business but other then cards and video games there is still one other business that Nintendo is still involved in. Major League Baseball.

Ever since 1992 Nintendo has been the majority owner of the Seattle Mariners. They are only one of three teams that are actually owned under corporate ownership. Hiroshi Yamauchi has been a majority stockholder of Nintendo to this day as well as being the previous president. Despite him then being the owner of the Seattle Mariners, he has never attended a game. Yamauchi has never traveled to North America and is said to hate travel. Even so his attendance record includes games that were played in Japan by the Seattle Mariners, although he did own tickets during one of these trips by the Seattle Mariners to Japan but the games were canceled due to the Iraq war at the time. He is said to be the only owner to have never seen his team play in person. In 1992 the Seattle Times reported that up to this point, Yamauchi had never even been to any baseball game before. He was on hand during signings for famous Japanese baseball players that were signed to the Mariners. This included Ichiro Suzuki who was a favorite in Japan. Suzuki was said to meet with Yamauchi yearly during his time with the Mariners. Yamauchi's purchase in 1992 is said to be the main reason why the Seattle Mariners did not move back then while they were on the verge of moving. Also Major League Baseball was strongly opposed to someone outside the United States owning a club. He was at first only allowed to have 50 percent voting rights which has increased to 55 since then.

Nintendo's presence is not hidden at Safeco field. There are advertisements and even Mario has visited games. In recent years you have been able to use handheld systems all the way back to the Nintendo DS during the games to do a variety of things. These include ordering food  and drinks (you can also see the progress of the order), viewing player stats, looking up the map of the stadium, watching the live tv game, multiplayer baseball trivia against the entire stadium, and more. This is done over the internet at the stadium and the cost is 5 dollars per game or 30 dollars per season. Nintendo also has rental systems available and also systems are available for purchase during the games. It is rumored this system might become available elsewhere but this has not happened yet.

No comments:

Post a Comment