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Report: 'Corporate sponsor pressure,' not players, led MLB to move All-Star Game out of Atlanta. Here are MLB's corporate sponsors.
Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

Report: 'Corporate sponsor pressure,' not players, led MLB to move All-Star Game out of Atlanta. Here are MLB's corporate sponsors.

Players were reportedly not consulted or given the opportunity to vote

According to a report from prominent reporter/writer Howard Bryant, MLB's decision to move the 2021 All-Star Game and draft out of Atlanta was not driven by a threatened player boycott, but rather by "Corporate sponsor pressure." According to Bryant, neither the players nor the MLBPA was permitted a vote on the issue.

Bryant went further, claiming that even an organized group of players who have been attempting to pressure MLB to adopt more social-justice-friendly stances had told the Players' Association that they would play the game as normal, whether it was in Atlanta or anywhere else.

Corporations have been feeling intense pressure, driven by Democrats and liberal activists (in the media and elsewhere) to oppose Georgia's new voting reform law, and the early indications are that liberal pressure has worked. Earlier this week, corporations like Delta, Coca-Cola and others issued statements condemning the law as "unacceptable" even as most of those same corporations did not enunciate a single actual provision of the law they found objectionable.

Bryant did not indicate which corporate sponsors were responsible for the pressure, but MLB lists the following companies as corporate sponsors on their website:

  • Arm and Hammer
  • Bank of America
  • Blue-Emu Pain Relief Cream
  • Budweiser
  • Camping World
  • Chevrolet
  • Clear
  • Citrix
  • Draft Kings
  • Evan Williams Bourbon
  • Extreme Networks
  • Flonase
  • Gatorade
  • Geico
  • Good Sam
  • Google
  • Hankook Tires
  • HyperIce
  • Loan Depot
  • Lysol
  • Mastercard
  • MGM Resorts
  • Mitel
  • Netspend
  • NTT
  • Old Dominion Freight Lines
  • Oxi Clean
  • Roman
  • Scotts
  • SiriusXM
  • Spectrum Solutions
  • Taco Bell
  • T-Mobile
  • Utz
  • Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi
TheBlaze has reached out to each of these companies for comment, and asked whether any representatives of their companies pressured or encouraged MLB to move the All-Star Game out of Atlanta over the voter reform law, and if so, why. This post will be updated when and if those companies respond.

After the move, MLB is facing boycott calls of its own. The hashtag "#BoycottMLB" trended last night on Twitter, and the movement got another boost when former President Donald Trump encouraged those calls for a boycott in a statement released Friday night. MLB already faces a severe revenue crunch from the lack of in-person attendance last year, expected diminished attendance this year due to ongoing COVID-19 social distancing requirements, and declining television viewership. Those declining revenues also threaten the continuation of labor peace, and may lead to an extended strike or lockout after the current collective bargaining agreement ends on December 1, 2021.

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