From noon to 4 p.m. ET, everyone who goes to the MLB.com Shop can take 20 percent off the total order. It is going to be a big day for holiday shopping all over the Internet, and baseball fans tend to know what they want.
You want a good ballpark dog and a World Series championship.
You want to find incredible holiday gifts and incredible savings.
This is the day on the calendar known since 2005 as "Cyber Monday" -- a day when many people return to their office computers following a long Thanksgiving break and jump into the online holiday shopping boom. This four-hour sale is one way to celebrate that, and it also will be just the start of something unique here.
It will be like the ultimate ceremonial first pitch for baseball shoppers, followed by 16 days of sales called "Hits for the Holidays" at the MLB.com Shop. Start with this monster sale and then look on Tuesday for the gradual rollout.
Judging by the early returns, this may be an even bigger day than expected. Retail spending on the Internet during the Thanksgiving weekend was up markedly from a year ago, according to data compiled by comScore Inc. Online spending was higher over the actual holiday, up 29 percent to $272 million from last year's Thanksgiving Day. For so-called Black Friday, ecommerce sales amounted to $531 million, a 22-percent gain from 2006. ComScore expects "Cyber Monday," the first workday after the holiday weekend, to post sales exceeding $700 million.
"Consumers will continue to shift more of their holiday gift spending from stores to sites this year," Jeffrey Grau, a senior analyst for eMarketer, wrote in a recent report. He said figures show the trend toward online shopping "will insulate retail ecommerce from the economic jitters expected to dampen retail industry sales during the critical months of November and December." According to eMarketer data, online holiday sales are expected to total $31 billion compared with $26.2 billion last year.
It will seem like just about everyone is at the store on Monday at the MLB.com Shop, only you won't realize it, of course. It is the ultimate in convenience, no long lines, no square-footage restrictions for stock, no grouchy cashiers or patrons, just you trying to decide how to make the most of that 20-percent off today.
According to Wikipedia, this is the origin of "Cyber Monday:"
"The term 'Cyber Monday' is a neologism invented by Shop.org, part of the U.S. trade association National Retail Federation. It was first used within the ecommerce community during the 2005 holiday season. According to Scott Silverman, the head of Shop.org, the term was coined based on research showing that 77 percent of online retailers reported a significant increase in sales on the Monday after Thanksgiving in 2004."
As far as the name itself, we seem to be kind of stuck with that, even though it suggests days of Enron or sock puppet mascots and 56K modem connections. But as long as there's a 20 percent off sale, do you really care? Maybe we could at least agree on shortening it to "Cy Monday" going forward? After all, baseball fans -- who just shattered the overall Major League Baseball regular season attendance record with 78 million strong -- comprise a big part (maybe most?) of that consumer sector. We're into nicknames and "Cy" is universally known to all fans.
Denton True "Cy" Young. He won 511 games, and C.C. Sabathia and Jake Peavy just won the major pitching awards in his honor for their respective leagues. If you go to the MLB.com Shop between noon and 4, you will be able to find a Highland Mint Cleveland Indians Cy Young Gold Coin Photo Mint featuring two 24-karat gold coins. It sells for $89.99, so you will be able to chop 18 bucks off that price during the Cy Monday Sale.
And speaking of Highland Mint, you also can find a Gold and Color Team Commemorative Coin for every club -- for only $19.99 before knocking the 20 percent off. It is perhaps the greatest stocking stuffer ever, a must this afternoon.
There is more memorabilia galore at the MLB.com Shop, and 20 percent off is a good reason to consider now, especially considering the high value of some of those items.
You probably didn't really just drop off of the face of the Earth over the last four days. But whether you have been staying wired or whether you are just resurfacing online, the four-hour sale is not something you are going to want to miss.
Cy Monday is here, and then it is going to be one unbelievable savings promotion after another for your budget over this next month. Happy shopping.
Mark Newman is enterprise editor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.