While the rest of us fixate on the baseball diamond and the NFL practice field, James Huening has come up with the best uni-related observation of the year so far: He’s noticed that Cuban prexy-for-now Raul Castro tends to wear a cheapo foam/mesh cap, while brother Fidel has always worn a full cloth version. “I realize Cuba’s no economic powerhouse,” writes Huening, “but the man’s second in command of an entire country — and who knows, he may be in charge permanently very soon. Can’t he get some decent headwear?”
So much for socialism — could the lines of class stratification be more clearly delineated than by the symbolism of cloth cap vs. foam/mesh cap? Don’t be surprised if El Presidente’s favorite chapeau gets “misplaced” during his hospitalization.
Meanwhile: Two Uni Watch readers have recently had some success with professional logo design. The first is longtime contributor Doug Brei (a baseball historian of some note up in Rochester), who saw the recent Ticker item about Alaskan League uniforms and checked in with the following:
My wife and I honeymooned in Alaska two years ago and attended a ballgame between the two Anchorage teams, the Bucs and the Glacier Pilots. We had a great time at the game, but I couldn’t help noticing how outdated the two different league logos looked [here and here]. So when I returned home, I designed my own logo concept and contacted the GMs of the two teams. I’m proud to say they officially adopted my logo design last October.
About my design: The blue and yellow are the official colors of the Alaska state flag, in which Alaskans take an inordinate amount of pride compared to most of us in the lower 48. The stars on the logo are also symbolic of those on the flag. The “A” in the ABL logo is in the shape of a snow-capped mountain representing the rugged terrain of the 49th state, and includes a baseball to represent the sport. And of course I included an outline of the state map within the “B.”
I’ve also designed logos for two of the teams that will likely be introduced in time for next season.
Our other logo entrepreneur is Josh Wagner. As you may recall, he’s the one who hates the Iowa State logo and asked for input about a month ago regarding his logo-redesign project. Here’s his latest report:
Thank you again for contributing to my successful presentation. I ended up meeting with ISU for two hours instead of the appointed one hour — such was the success of my concept. I can’t disclose any details of the meeting, but it’s fair to say I will still be working on this.
The ISU athletic director really enjoyed seeing the feedback from your first blog posting. So here‘s the current logo — and here‘s a rough idea of what I’m proposing. I still have to tweak it somewhat, but this should give you an idea.
Batboy Perspective: Several items from yesterday’s post prompted a note from a trusted Uni Watch source who happens to be an MLB batboy. Here’s what he had to say about umpires keeping the lineup cards wrapped in plastic: “Some umpires have plastic sleeves they can put the cards in to keep them from getting wet [from sweat]. A sandwich size Ziploc bag works just as well. One time an umpire actually asked me to keep the cards, since he was already sweating through his shirt after a few innings. When the teams changed pitchers or sent up pinch-hitters, I had to give the lineup cards back to the ump for him to write in the changes, and then he gave the cards back to me.”
The batboy also had some interesting thoughts regarding the trade deadline:
Some people (not Uni Watch readers, of course) don’t realize how stressful the trade deadline is for the equipment manager. When a transaction is completed, he’s not among the first people told. When he finally is told, he has to call the other equipment manager (after finding out where he is) to find out all the measurements for the new player, manufacturer of choice, uniform number, etc. Then he has maybe only a few hours to get all the necessary gear ready, which includes getting jerseys stitched up. Let’s just say the tailor that has all of our team’s business was pretty stressed out the other day, when we needed our new players’ jerseys ASAP. Then our starting pitcher changed his mind about the jersey he wanted to wear [this is one of the MLB teams that allows the starting pitcher to determine what the team will wear each day], so the tailor had to switch which jerseys he was working on for the new players’ first game.
As an aside, I’ll be writing soon — either on ESPN.com or here on the blog — on the subject of batboys’ uniforms. I also just interviewed one of the Tigers’ batboys for a piece that will appear soon in ESPN [the] Magazine, although that one isn’t uni-related (it’s for their regular “7 Things You Didn’t Know About…” feature). If you share my growing fascination with batboys, you’ll want to check out this article.
Uni Watch News Ticker: When Mike Pelfrey wore a blue mouthguard during his last start, we wondered if he’d switch to a black version if he pitched while wearing the Mets’ black jersey. Nope. … Disturbing sight last night in Baltimore, where Jamie Moyer traded in his usual stirrups for solid socks. … This unbuttoned jersey thing is getting out of hand. … Good catch by Jeff Cohen, who says Sean Casey could be seen in the dugout of Monday’s Tigers game (which he didn’t actually play in) wearing uni No. 12. As of this writing, Casey is indeed listed as No. 12 on the roster posted at Tigers.com, but he wore No. 21 when making his Tigers debut last night. … Special shout-out to whoever sounded the alarm among Cubs fans, dozens of whom wrote in last night to protest yesterday’s critique of Ron Santo. Among the many choice comments, this one stood out: “Pick on someone with legs, ya douchebag.”