Esurance and Major League Baseball are establishing a new awards series that will hand out 24 prizes including best major leaguer, fan catch and social media post.
The first-of-its-kind series adds content for MLB’s media properties while catering to its business partner’s digital- first approach. Voting begins Tuesday online, and most of the winners will be revealed in a television special Nov. 20, exclusively on MLB Network and MLB.com.
“The Esurance MLB Awards is a true collaboration between MLB and Esurance to bring fans an all-digital awards experience with a new website to serve as a content hub, discussion forum, and voting platform for fans to engage with each other and be a part of the awards season like never before,” Esurance Chief Marketing Officer Alan Gellman said.
The new awards program deepens the partnership between baseball and Esurance, which in April became the exclusive auto insurance partner of MLB. As part of the agreement, the online insurance company became the title sponsor of baseball’s new all-digital All-Star balloting.
At the time, Gellman said the two groups would look to develop a new awards series that resonates with the “tens of millions” of fans who are more likely to watch three minutes of highlights than an entire game.
Five different groups of voters — fans, media, front- office personnel, former players and Society for American Baseball Research members — will each account for 20 percent of the voting. The new awards platform will supplement other pre- existing MLB awards, such as each league’s Most Valuable Player and the Cy Young Award.
Esurance is also partnering with Buster Posey, three-time World Series champion, two-time All-Star catcher for the San Francisco Giants, as a brand ambassador.
Esurance was bought in 2011 by Allstate Corp., the largest publicly traded U.S. seller of auto and home insurance, as part of a $1 billion deal. It competes with Berkshire Hathaway Inc.’s Geico unit and Progressive Corp.
Another insurer, The Hartford, also has a deal with the MLB as the exclusive business insurance, homeowners insurance and employee benefits partner of MLB. This sponsorship includes the presenting sponsorship of the Reliever of the Year Awards and a partnership with former New York Yankees’ closer Mariano Rivera.
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