ST. Petersburg — When Rays hosts the Wander Franco Bobblehead Game on Saturday, promotional giveaways will be arranged in a contemporary way: non-fungible tokens.
Traditional bobblehead dolls will end as soon as they are out of stock, but all participating fans will receive a digitally collectable NFT through Candy Digital, MLB’s entire partner. After registering with the NFT, you will also have the opportunity to request a free ticket for the game in August. The NFT is randomly assigned three different layers of light blue, gold and devil ray themed versions, with each level containing future benefits that have not yet been determined.
“It’s definitely like an encounter between an old school and a new school,” said Rays CEO Bill Walsh.
When a fan scans a ticket in Tropicana Field, the email account associated with the ticket triggers a follow-up message containing information about NFT billing. The NFT’s design revolves around a commemorative ticket that Walsh said would accommodate fan seating locations from that night. Each version also has different art and different color schemes.
According to Walsh, this was the first idea to start brewing in the last offseason. The league has partnered with Candy Digital and Rays has begun to consider dates for incorporating NFT promotions into their schedules. Walsh said he didn’t expect 100% of people in the game to claim NFTs. There are only a few of these promotions across the league, and Saturday’s events continue to be part of the learning process.
However, Walsh hopes that the test run will help educate about NFTs, while allowing Rays to be innovative and act as the “tip of the universe into space.”
“NFTs are still new and mysterious to people,” says Walsh. “
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