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WEEKLY WHINE

What your baseball team should wear

In the United States, the highest level of professional baseball is called Major League Baseball, an organisation that is still technically comprised of two entities called “leagues” even though they are operated as a single organisation with the same rules [except one]. Each of the 30 teams in this double-league league has at least two sets of uniforms, of which one is normally worn when the team is playing at home and the other when the team is playing at another team’s home. Many teams also have additional uniforms worn on particular days of the week or on special occasions, as well as throwback uniforms that recreate a past design that the team has worn.

But there are many teams that wear uniforms that are silly or outlandish, or that simply do not fit with the team’s identity. Here now we present a complete review of all MLB teams’ uniforms by the GoobNet Special Projects Enhancement and Enforcement Division [SPEED]. They have reviewed the primary home and away uniforms for each team, as well as those alternate uniforms that the team wears frequently. Throwbacks are included only if they are used as alternates – rare use throwbacks, like the satin blue uniforms that the Dodgers will wear six times this year, are not included.

AL EAST

Baltimore

Suitable as is. As with the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens, the sleeve patch borrows from the flag of the state of Maryland.

Boston

Boston have some of the best uniforms in the majors, particularly with the red socks that each uniform includes. But the team should consider a couple of changes, such as red “BOSTON” text on the away jersey and a red cap to go with the red alternate jersey.

New York Yankees

There seems little point in suggesting changes to the Yankees’ uniforms, since the team will not make any changes. Nonetheless, we will suggest the addition of a white alternate cap with a blue bill.

Tampa Bay

Tampa Bay’s current name and identity are inferior to the black and green worn in 2007, their last season as the Devil Rays. The team should revert to that appearance.

Toronto

Toronto’s current logo and identity are inferior to the blue and white worn until 2004. The team should revert to any of those appearances, but the sky blue away uniforms worn until 1990 are preferred.

AL CENTRAL

Chicago White Sox

Suitable as is. The current uniforms were introduced twenty years ago, a rare example of a 1990s uniform design that still holds up today.

Cleveland

Cleveland’s uniforms are generally good, but the block “CLEVELAND” introduced on this year’s away jersey is inferior to the script “Cleveland” worn previously.

Detroit

Detroit’s uniforms are exactly right, from the simple home jersey with the Old English D to the orange D on the away hat. If the team is interested in an alternate jersey, the alternate logo that depicts a tiger with the Old English D, currently worn as a sleeve patch, can be worn on the left chest of either a white or blue jersey.

Kansas City

Kansas City’s current uniforms are acceptable. The team earns credit for eliminating the black drop shadow that was added to the script “Royals” several years ago.

Minnesota

With the recent passing of Harmon Killebrew, Minnesota will honour their legend by wearing their alternate cream uniforms for their remaining home games this season. The team also earns credit for eliminating the pinstripes on the away uniform last year, though one cannot help but think that the block “MINNESOTA” worn on that uniform was superior.

AL WEST

Anaheim

Anaheim’s uniforms are almost completely correct. To get to completely correct, the team must change its name from “Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim” to either “Anaheim Angels” or “California Angels”. Once that is done, the text on the away jersey should change to “ANAHEIM” or “CALIFORNIA” as appropriate. In a further note, the team is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and will wear several throwback uniforms over the course of the season. The team receives massive credit for omitting the winged A uniforms from the late 1990s.

Oakland

Suitable as is. The team introduces a gold alternate jersey this year but should consider a gold cap to go with it.

Seattle

Seattle have worn nearly the same uniforms for eighteen years. This year the team brings the teal alternate jersey, unseen since the 1990s, back. It’s kind of silly, but for occasional usage, it is acceptable.

Texas

Texas introduced its current visual identity in 1994. Since then, the only major changes have been changing the primary colour from red to blue and the text on the home jersey from “RANGERS” to “TEXAS”. Both changes should be reverted. In addition, the team should also consider introducing a vest, to be paired with a red undershirt.

NL EAST

Atlanta

Atlanta’s uniforms are a well executed bunch, though the team should consider changing the red alternate jersey to have “Braves” in white text with a blue outline instead of the reverse.

Florida

The team’s current uniforms are acceptable. Since the team will be changing its name to “Miami Marlins” next season, the team will, at the minimum, introduce new caps, presumably with an M in place of the F.

New York Mets

ESPN’s Paul Lukas has written an interesting expose on why the New York Mets have been wearing black for more than ten years. The team’s original colours of orange and blue were chosen to honour the city’s original National League clubs, the Giants and Dodgers respectively. However, the black was added just to sell more shit. Anyway, once the Mets eradicate all the black from their uniforms and wear only the blue hat, we will declare them acceptable. The team does receive credit for the pinstriped and normal versions of its home uniform.

Philadelphia

As proof that not all teams can carry off dual pinstriped and nonpinstriped uniforms like the Mets, we have Philadelphia. The team has been wearing a pinstriped home uniform for nearly twenty years, but in recent years, an off white nonpinstriped version has been added as an alternate. A white version of this uniform should replace the primary home uniform.

Washington

Since relocating from Montréal after the 2004 season until last year, the Washington Nationals wore block lettering. The team has now eradicated it and gone to a simple chest logo on the home uniform, a welcome change. The blue alternate uniform, however, has the same logo rendered in stars and stripes, which just isn’t working.

NL CENTRAL

Chicago Cubs

Suitable as is, but the team should consider reintroducing the script “Cubs” text worn on the away jersey in the mid 1990s. Solid white pants, not pinstriped, may be a better fit with the alternate blue jersey.

Cincinnati

In 1999, Cincinnati added black to its colours of white and red, but in recent years the team has shown that it learned its lesson, relegating the black to drop shadow duties. The team should go further by eliminating the away cap with the black bill and wearing the all red cap for all games. The team should also consider a nonpinstriped adaptation of the vest worn in the mid 1990s.

Houston

While this appearance would be a success for many other teams, a team called the Astros should not be wearing traditional pinstripes and script text. The blue and gold colour scheme from the 1990s was the team’s best, and with a tasteful choice of horizontal stripes, perhaps similar to the White Sox’ jerseys of the 1980s, Houston could have a wonderfully modern appearance while still paying homage to the team’s rich uniform history.

Milwaukee

Milwaukee’s current uniforms are acceptable, but this is another team with plenty of interesting and innovative uniforms in its history. Even a simple change like a sky blue away uniform would be a significant improvement.

Pittsburgh

This season, Pittsburgh eliminated the pinstriped vest that had been worn as a home alternate. But without the pinstripes, it would be a perfect home uniform.

St Louis

St Louis’s uniforms have gone largely unchanged for decades. The only major change was the navy blue away cap, which has now been worn for nearly twenty years. On occasion, the team has also offered alternate caps depicting a cardinal rather than the interlocking letters STL. A red version of this cap would be a welcome alternate.

NL WEST

Arizona

Arizona has always had good logos but bad colour schemes. Purple, teal, and copper, though very familiar to Arizona residents, looks ridiculous to the rest of the world, while red and black is just as dull with the Diamondbacks as it is with the Astros. We suggest giving teal and copper a try and eliminating “D-backs” from the jerseys, replacing it with the A logo currently used on the alternate jersey. We also recommend eliminating the snake D logo in favour of the A.

Colorado

Colorado’s primary home and away uniforms are acceptable as is. The alternates, however, are unsightly and should be removed. The team should also consider changing the colours from black and purple to navy blue and sky blue, a combination that much more readily evokes the Rocky Mountains.

Los Angeles

Los Angeles’s uniforms are suitable as is. The script “Los Angeles” added to the away jersey in 1999 looked funny at the time but has since grown on us.

San Diego

This year, San Diego’s away uniforms changed from sand to gray, a welcome improvement because the sand invariably ended up looking more like Calvin’s combination of six crayon colours that Hobbes identified as “perfect barf”. As an additional change, the team should consider increasing its usage of the Swinging Friar logo, perhaps as a sleeve patch on the primary uniforms as well as the alternate.

San Francisco

The uniforms are suitable as is, but the team should consider improvements like reverting to the vertically arched “GIANTS” text of the late 1990s. An alternate jersey in either black or orange, with the interlocking SF logo on the chest, would be a useful addition.

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