Two of California's major-league baseball teams awarded their ad accounts last week after separate reviews that ignited interest from a number of prominent area shops.
The Oakland Athletics selected Goodby, Silverstein & Partners in San Francisco after a review that included Wieden + Kennedy, TBWA\Chiat\Day and the incumbent, Foote, Cone & Belding's San Francisco office.
The San Diego Padres tapped little-known Hoodoo Advertising, a 7-year-old, six-person shop in San Diego that said it had never participated in a competitive pitch before. It edged out two of the largest shops in San Diego, DiZinno Thompson and Matthews/Evans/Albertazzi, as well as The Ballpark in Los Angeles, sources said.
Spending on each account is only expected to be about $1-2 million, but those involved said the lure of major-league baseball goes well beyond the budget.
"It's baseball, what more do I need to say?" said Jeff Goodby. "We get very sentimental about our national pastime."
Goodby and Rich Silverstein worked on the A's in the early 1980s at Ogilvy & Mather, creating the memorable "Billy Ball" campaign tied to the team's manager at the time, Billy Martin.
For its part, Hoodoo gambled and created a batch of spec work, including TV spots and a new logo, said agency president Sam Griffiths. "We're kind of unknown, so we didn't want to go in with just storyboards," he said. "We created an entire campaign. It's the biggest thing we have ever done." He said the team plans to use work from the pitch, including the logo.