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Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Continues to Build on Family Legacy with BodyArmor Deal

Last Updated: January 15, 2024
The Blue Jays star speaks to Boardroom about his new BodyArmor deal, his baseball family, Shohei Ohtani, one MLB rule he’d change, and more.

Toronto Blue Jays All-Star slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. expanded his endorsement portfolio to begin the new year, inking a multi-year deal with sports drink brand BodyArmor, the company announced Wednesday. Bringing the engaging Canadian into the BodyArmor fold coincides with the brand’s first international product rollout, with its product now available across all of Canada.

The 24-year-old joins a star-studded BodyArmor athlete roster, including Ronald Acuña Jr., Donovan Mitchell, Trae Young, Sabrina Ionescu, Alex Morgan, Christian McCaffrey, and CeeDee Lamb. Through a translator, Guerrero said that he’s grown more conscious of what he puts into his body over the last 2-3 years and sees BODYARMOR as a better-for-you alternative to other sports drinks on the market. 

BodyArmor was sold to Coca-Cola in November 2021 at a $5.6 billion valuation, netting Kobe Bryant’s estate more than $400 million off an initial $6 million investment in 2014. Guerrero said having people he’s looked up to, like Bryant and Acuña, already part of the brand significantly factored into his endorsement decision. 

“Off the field, I’m just trying to keep the same mindset that those two guys have,” Guerrero told Boardroom.  

On the field, Major League Baseball saw a slew of rule changes in 2023, like the pitch clock and the elimination of the shift that led to improved attendance and shorter games. Knowing the new rules weren’t going anywhere, Vladdy said he tried swallowing the pill and worked to adjust as quickly as possible. Despite a down year by his standards when just 10 of his 26 home runs came at Rogers Centre, Guerrero was still named an All-Star, won the Home Run Derby in Seattle, and led the Blue Jays to the playoffs.

In winning the Derby last year, he joined his father, Vladimir, the 2007 champ, as the only father and son to take home the trophy. Although he won in the Derby’s newer bracketed, timed competition, Guerrero said if he were commissioner for a day, he’d change the format back to its original rules.

“Just go back to the 10 outs,” he proclaimed.

For one Friday in early December, it looked like Guerrero would have a megastar teammate in Shohei Ohtani. Reports, later refuted, had Ohtani flying from Southern California to Toronto in a private jet to finalize a deal with the Blue Jays. However, Ohtani signed his record-breaking contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers the next day.

While Guerrero said he wasn’t involved with the Jays’ Ohtani pursuit — leaving that work to the front office as he prepares for next season — he described the reigning American League MVP as unlike any player he’d ever seen.

“That guy is a freak of nature,” Vladdy added.

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Off the field, BodyArmor joins a growing list of endorsements for Guerrero that includes Wilson, Jordan Brand, and Topps. A week after Tom Brady’s Fanatics campaign envisioning him on a dynastic Montreal Expos team in a commercial that featured the original Vladimir Guerrero, Vladdy was asked which teammate he’d want if he played in a different sport.

“Michael Jordan. He’s obviously a great mentor, great leader, and obviously a huge winner,” Guerrero Jr. said. “He’s definitely able to inspire those around him. And quite frankly, whenever you talk about the NBA, you definitely have to mention Jordan.”

Guerrero had the privilege of watching and learning from his Hall of Fame father throughout his big-league career, instilling lessons of hard work and belief Vladdy carries with him everywhere. But the family’s legacy won’t stop with Junior if things go according to plan.

Vladdy’s younger brother, Pablo, is a 17-year-old outfield prospect who played his first year in the Texas Rangers organization in 2023 after inking a reported $97,500 signing bonus last January. And when the international free agency begins on Jan. 15, the New York Mets are expected to sign his other brother, Vladi Miguel, a 16-year-old lefty outfielder and first baseman.

“Obviously, I’m very happy and honored to be following my father’s footsteps, and I know they feel the same way,” Guerrero said, with the potential to lead a new baseball family like the Molinas or the Alous. “So I’m definitely just trying to keep up our father’s legacy and just making them proud along the way.”

While the three Guerrero brothers have different games and skill sets, Vladdy said the one major commonality between the three is the sweet, powerful swing they seemingly inherited from their father.

“It’s just natural,” Guerrero said.

With less than six weeks away from Spring Training, Guerrero is working tirelessly to improve and deliver the Blue Jays their first World Series title in 31 years. Spotrac estimates Vladdy will earn $19 million in arbitration for the 2024 season, his second-to-last arbitration year before he hits free agency following 2025.

As he grows into his usual routine, which includes music from rapper and close friend Eladio Carrion, Guerrero is excited to add BodyArmor to his daily baseball ritual.

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About The Author
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung
Shlomo Sprung is a Senior Staff Writer at Boardroom. He has more than a decade of experience in journalism, with past work appearing in Forbes, MLB.com, Awful Announcing, and The Sporting News. He graduated from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 2011, and his Twitter and Spotify addictions are well under control. Just ask him.