MLB, Papa John's partner up in grand fashion

Big league bases-loaded blasts will activate pizza deal for fans

MLB, Papa John's partner up in grand fashion

There were 108 grand slams in 2015, including Alex Rodriguez's slump-busting blast for the Yankees that extended his career grand slam record to 25; Edwin Encarnacion's second of three homers on a nine-RBI day in Toronto; and the one hit belted by Joey Butler for Tampa Bay off Mark Buehrle on the final Sunday of the regular season.

We are always ready for more of that heavy traffic going around the bases, considering that it happened just 2.7 percent of the time in bases-loaded situations last year. There is even more rooting interest in Major League Baseball's biggest blast, in fact, now that Papa John's has signed a multiyear deal to be MLB's official pizza and brought "Papa Slams" to the game.

Papa John's will activate an integrated marketing and experiential campaign across MLB's media platforms, signature events and the Play Ball initiative. It also is set to contribute for a lot of pizza deals. For every Papa Slam hit from Opening Day through the season, fans can receive 40 percent off any pizza at regular menu price online the following day.

Just go to MLB.com/papaslam the day after a Papa Slam is slugged and enter the promo code PAPASLAM. Then hit the "Order Now" button and they'll take care of you. You can see the latest grand slam highlights and get more info on Papa Slams, which will be promoted on MLB.com, MLB social channels, MLB Network and MLB.TV with live look-ins when the bases are loaded.

"This partnership combines two of the nation's favorite pastimes, eating pizza and watching baseball," said Papa John's founder, chairman and CEO John Schnatter. "As the official pizza of Major League Baseball, we are delivering a better pizza to baseball fans and making grand slams even more exciting with Papa Slam."

Papa John's partnership with MLB expands its strong relationship with the league on the club level. Papa John's is the official pizza of 21 clubs, including the D-backs, Braves, Orioles, White Sox, Indians, Rockies, Astros, Royals, Angels, Marlins, Brewers, Twins, Yankees, Phillies, Pirates, Padres, Mariners, Cardinals, Rays, Rangers and Nationals.

"With 21 club deals and involvement in youth baseball, Papa John's has demonstrated a commitment to baseball and we are delighted they are deepening their involvement with a national MLB partnership," said MLB president of business and media Bob Bowman. "The Papa Slam is a fun opportunity for Papa John's to provide a desirable fan benefit connected to the grand slam, baseball's most exciting offensive moment."

Papa John's is also a proud supporter of youth baseball, as the founding sponsor of the inaugural Papa John's Youth Baseball Invitational. Youth baseball teams from the Miami area compete for the once-in-a-lifetime all-expenses-paid trip to Dyersville, Iowa, to compete in a baseball tournament and skills competition at the iconic "Field of Dreams" movie site. The brand will expand its youth baseball initiative as a supporting sponsor of MLB's Play Ball effort to encourage widespread participation in both formal and informal baseball activities especially focused on youth.

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.