Out of Scope

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Written by

Hirsch Leatherwood

Out of Scope

Inside Baseball

Plus: McKinsey does “layoffs” and Bill Nye does the eclipse

Banner Photo: The Economist

Happy Friday! This week, we play ball and discuss the issues facing Major League Baseball and its star player, Shohei Ohtani. But first...


  • The day after TikTok Shop announced its increased referral fees for small businesses and creators, social commerce startup and TikTok-challenger Flip announced its $144 million Series C funding round. TikTok has brand loyalty on its side, but time will tell if the inevitable price shifts will sway consumers toward emerging social shopping platforms like Flip.

  • The consulting giant McKinsey is trying an unconventional layoff strategy—paying its workers to quit. Seen as a more compassionate option than the “up or out” approach, McKinsey is offering select employees nine months of company time to find new jobs, in addition to career coaching and assistance with updating their resumes.

  • JPMorgan Chase officially introduced Chase Media Solutions this week, enabling marketers to offer customers targeted deals and discounts by leveraging their spending data. The move reflects a growing trend of companies monetizing their apps by selling advertising space amidst the death of the cookie.

💡ON OUR MINDS: Inside Baseball

  • This year, baseball’s opening day came at an interesting— potentially pivotal— moment for the sport.

  • MLB’s golden boy Shohei Ohtani’s Dodger stadium debut was overshadowed by a looming scandal that broke just a week prior. The scandal alleges that Ippei Mizuhara, Ohtani’s longtime friend and interpreter, accumulated over $4 million in gambling debts and had been borrowing money from Ohtani to pay off his dues.

  • To put Ohtani’s stardom into perspective for any non-baseball fans – his statistics and level of talent on the field are rivaled only by Babe Ruth. Not only has Ohtani become an MLB superstar in recent years, but his presence in the league has opened “America’s pastime” to a global audience like never before.

  • Ohtani’s success was an objective win for the MLB, which has been struggling to grow its brand beyond a pre-existing base and “tell a story that is more than the rural, white aesthetic of baseball.

  • Regardless of whether or not Ohtani is eventually charged, the fact that this player who was expected to embody a rebirth for baseball is now shrouded by a poorly-timed sports gambling scandal has thrown a more notable wrench into the MLB brand than even its new uniforms could.


In case you missed these reads.

  • Tudor's launch of their new pink-dialed watch, coupled with a concerted effort to market it to men, marks an unconventional move for the traditionally-minded company.
  • Learn how to safely(!) experience the solar eclipse on Monday with no one other than everyone’s favorite Science Guy.
  • I’m sorry, your employee can’t answer your 9pm Slack right now. Why? Oh— because of a new “Right to Disconnect” bill introduced in California.

Thanks for reading,


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