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With Legg Mason Ending Partnership With Orioles, Center Field Has Different Look

April 15, 2019
By Holden Wilen | Baltimore Business Journal

The center field scoreboard in Oriole Park at Camden Yards has a different look this season after Legg Mason Inc. ended its multiyear partnership with the team.

A Legg Mason spokeswoman said the financial services firm ended the deal as part of a bigger move to exit all of its sports sponsorships, which also included a partnership with the Ravens. The decision to pull sports sponsorships comes after Baltimore-based Legg Mason announced a multimillion-dollar cost-saving plan earlier this year.

Legg Mason had multiple signs in prime locations at Oriole Park. The company's name was placed prominently in the center of the scoreboard, and it also had an ad on the left field side of the video screen.

"It was a difficult decision, but in an era in which client expectations and needs are going up and profit margins are under pressure, we've exited sports sponsorships to focus our spend on those things that directly benefit or impact clients," spokeswoman Mary Athridge said in an email.

A Budweiser banner with the slogan "This Bud's For You" has taken the place of Legg Mason's vertical ad on the left side of the scoreboard. A new sponsor is expected to take the spot in the center, though a spokesman for the Orioles declined to comment.

Legg Mason will spend its dollars on having advisers give presentations on topics such as "The Anatomy of a Recession" at various conferences, Athridge said.

The company has pulled out of sports deals before. It ended an 18-year run as the title sponsor of the ATP Tour's tennis tournament in Washington, D.C., in 2012. Legg also previously ended its sponsorship with the Orioles in 2009 amid the economic recession but came back in 2014.

Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox

Issue 253: April 2019