This one may give Ralph Nader a coronary.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Major League Baseball has agreed to put ads for the movie 'Spiderman 2' on first, second and third bases (but not home plate), as well as on pitching rubbers and in on-deck circles, starting next month.
Page 2's reaction?
No, not because the ads will sully the sanctity of the sport formerly known as America's Pastime. We're outraged because the teams weren't given the option of choosing which movie to advertise.
So we're going to match up each team with a personalized movie to plaster on its bases and pitching rubbers.
Baltimore Orioles: "Birdman of Alcatraz"
A convicted murdered with a bad attitude is turned around by some birds. A wealthy attorney with a curmudgeonly reputation becomes the toast of the town after finally putting his money in the right free agents for his Birds. Come on, tell us you don't see the similarities?
Boston Red Sox: "A Fistful of Dollars"
In this 1964 classic, a gunslinger rides into town and immediately escalates the battle between two warring factions in an effort to get rich off the blood feud. Hey, did you see the dollar figures in Curt Schilling's contract?
New York Yankees: "The Madness of King George"
Like alternate uniforms, the Yankees might want to save these ads for days when Jose Contreras, Gary Sheffield and Kenny Lofton are in the lineup at the same time.
Tampa Bay Devil Rays: "13 Going on 30"
The Devil Rays are still taking baby steps forward and don't want to raise expectations too much for the numbers in the win column. Plus, who isn't going to bust their tail going from first to third if there's a picture of Jennifer Garner waiting for them?
Toronto Blue Jays: "Slap Shot"
Now that McDonald's is out of the concession business at Skydome, the Blue Jays have to do something to attract casual fans. And with the Maple Leafs out of the playoffs, the city's fanatical hockey base has time on their hands and money in their pockets.
Chicago White Sox: "Eight Men Out"
A bad memory for the franchise, but the ads remind fans that at least Billy Koch isn't intentionally throwing games.
Cleveland Indians: "Major League: Back to the Minors"
This one is pretty self-explanatory when your starting rotation includes Jason Davis, Cliff Lee, Jake Westbrook and Jeff D'Amico.
Detroit Tigers: "Analyze This"
Fitting for a team that lost 119 games a season ago, but finished April with 13 wins after adding Ivan Rodriguez and a bunch of guys nobody else wanted.
Kansas City Royals: "The Missing"
This prairie mystery is perfect for a team in the heartland that can't figure out what happened to all of last season's good vibes.
Minnesota Twins: "Fargo"
No reason, other than we can't get enough of those accents.
Anaheim Angels: "Angels in the Outfield"
Hey, when you shell out $70 million over five years for Vladimir Guerrero, you can be damn sure you're going to exhaust every available marketing avenue for the guy.
Oakland Athletics: "A Beautiful Mind"
Is there any doubt what Billy Beane chooses if the decision is left up to him?
Seattle Mariners: "Grumpy Old Men"
Ties in nicely with the club's new cross-marketing plan involving Viagra, Propecia and Metamucil.
Texas Rangers: "Almost Famous"
A good fit for the team with the best record in baseball, thanks to the efforts of Alfonso Soriano and ... that guy who plays third ... and the one in the outfield ... plus that closer they've got.
Atlanta Braves: "Chopping Mall"
A 1986 flick about kids using whatever they can find in a mall to survive a band of malfunctioning robot guards bent on destruction. Sort of like Leo Mazzone trying to piece together a pitching staff after John Schuerholz blows up the rotation.
Two people discover the importance of what they had after trying to erase their memories of each other. Hey, anyone seen Ivan Rodriguez, Ugueth Urbina, Mark Redman and Derrek Lee recently?
Montreal Expos: "Les Miserables"
True, the average baseball crowd probably isn't the best target audience for Victor Hugo musicals, but, um, you kind of need a crowd in the first place for that to be a problem.
New York Mets: "Dazed and Confused"
It's too bad some of the Mets hitters can't use the paddle Ben Affleck swung in this 1993 gem.
Philadelphia Phillies: "Anger Management"
We're not sure if this is more for the fans or Larry Bowa, but it just seems like a good fit all around for Philadelphia.
Chicago Cubs: "Gone with the Wind"
Cubs fans hope this has more to do with Sammy Sosa's home run total than their team's chances of ending a lifetime of suffering.
Cincinnati Reds: "The Hunt for Red October"
It's the only way Reds fans are going to see October this year.
Houston Astros: "Hidalgo"
Richard Hidalgo is already among the league leaders in RBI, but a little positive reinforcement never hurt.
Milwaukee Brewers: "Cheaper by the Dozen"
It pays to be honest with your fans.
Pittsburgh Pirates: "Intolerable Cruelty"
How else do you describe putting a team like this in a stadium like PNC Park?
St. Louis Cardinals: "Master and Commander"
A special request from Tony LaRussa, just in case anyone has forgotten he's a genius.
Arizona Diamondbacks: "Cocoon"
The No. 1 rule of marketing: know your audience.
Colorado Rockies: "Things to Do in Denver when You're Dead"
This one is reserved strictly for the pitching rubber. We'll go with "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" for the bases.
Los Angeles Dodgers: "Swingers"
Reminds the Dodgers hitters to ask themselves, "Who is the big winner here tonight at Dodger Stadium?" before each at-bat.
San Francisco Giants: "Man on Fire"
Because really, Yorvit Torrealba just doesn't get enough attention for carrying this team.
San Diego Padres: "Pet Sematary"
Petco Park is the place home runs go to die, although we hear strange things about Phil Nevin trying to bury some of his doubles in the outfield.