[Editor’s Note: Paul here. Got home from Baltimore very late last night — more on that tomorrow. Today’s post is from Ben Traxel (shown at right), who was inspired by a random post in the comments section. Phil compiled today’s Ticker. I’ll have a few words at the end. Enjoy. — PL]
By Ben Traxel
A while back I sent Paul pictures of the quilt my Mom and I made back in the ’80s. I’ve been wanting to take on another DIY project after seeing all the cool ones on the site in the past year, but I didn’t have any ideas that really materialized until Memorial Day weekend.
It started back on May 21st, when there was some talk in the comments about this super-cool St. Louis Browns logo. One person commented that the logo, or a portion of it, would look great on a hat as a DIY project. I responded that I thought it would look quite dapper on a hockey sweater. Something about how hockey puts the logo front and center has always led me to like that jersey style the best.
Anyway, I used AutoCAD to make a mock-up of what the Browns logo might look like on an old-time hockey jersey. It turned out really well, so I sent it to Paul, who put it in the Ticker [along with a Cubs concept that Ben also sent along — PL]. Then I remembered I had an old brown sweater in my closet that was a little too big. I dug it out and decided that this was the project I’d been waiting for.
First I went to Wal-Mart and stood like a real manly stud in the sewing aisle trying to figure out what I needed. Ended up with three sheets each of brown, orange, and white felt for 32 cents apiece. I also bought a bottle of fabric glue for $4.99, a beginner sewing kit for about $8, and a spool of brown thread.
Chris Creamer’s site had several additional Browns logos that I simply had to include — they were too good to leave off. Once I settled on which logo should should go where, I needed a uniform number. I didn’t know much about the Browns other than Eddie Gaedel so I did some research. I needed a number that was pretty blocky, not slender — something that would fill some space on the back. Then I came across Bobo Hollowman, whose entire career consisted of a two-month span in 1953 (the last year before the team moved). Might not sound like much, but he pitched a no-hitter in his MLB debut! Since his uniform number was a nice, wide 24 (and I have a son named Beau, close enough to Bobo), I thought it was perfect.
Next was printing the logos at the right size to use as templates, cutting out the felt, gluing the pieces together, and then gluing all the logos and numerals onto the sweater. The only thing that wasn’t felt and glue is the stitching on the baseball. That part could have been better, as it was my first time with a needle and thread, but overall, not bad. I haven’t sewn all the elements down yet, but I’ll get around to that when I have more time. (There are some additional photos here.)
I know some of the elements don’t match the Browns uniforms of the day (the number font, for example, is a slightly taller version of what the Red Sox use), but I made it look like I wanted and I like it! My wife said, “I think it’s really neat, hon, but please don’t wear it out in public.” Just for that, I think I’ll wear it to work tomorrow!
So that’s how I spent my Memorial Day holiday. And I did it without wearing a red hat.
Uni Watch News Ticker, courtesy of Phil: “This is not going to go over well on Uni Watch,” writes David McGee, as described in this article on the pants stylings of Southern Miss … More National disgrace? Steven Olsen found this picture of Ryan Zimmerman, (found on SI.com — scroll down). Steven asks, “It totally looks like the ‘s’ in Washington is missing. How ironic is it that one of the teams with the most uniform troubles had a uniform screw-up in front of one of the greatest uniforms in sports history? Anyway, just thought I’d send it your way in case you haven’t seen it yet.” … A followup: in Wednesday’s ticker, Doug Keklak noticed this Apostrophe Catastrophe. Tyler Maun writes: “I stumbled across a picture that nearly made me spit my beverage out slapstick comedy-style all over my computer screen. Today’s “apostrophe catastraphe [sic]” comes from the ballpark of my employer, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, an affiliate of the Atlanta Braves. I’m one of the radio broadcasters for the club, and I handle the bulk of our media notes/game recaps/press releases, etc. (Don’t worry, I was never in charge of signage.) While in my baffled stupor that our humble abode would have ended up on Uni Watch, I took the elevator ride down from the press box to check out our concession stands which, indeed, do have a bizarrely and incorrectly shaped and placed apostrophe in front of “Dogs.” On all four of them. As a member of the grammar gestapo, I’m a little mortified that this has happened on my watch, but I’ve only worked here for a few months. I’ve mentioned it to the (hopefully) proper authorities, and it will (possibly) be corrected at some point. Apparently the logic was because there’s no “hot” in front of “dogs,” the apostrophe was warranted. Seeing as how “hot dogs” isn’t one word, I’m not buying it. This blemish is made all the more embarrassing when you consider that we hosted this a couple of weeks ago (three entries down). Whoops. That was to make fun of the Winston-Salem Dash. All night, we referred to them as the “Winston Hyphen Salem Dash” or the “Winston-Salem Hyphens” and tried our best to educate the masses in the ways of proper punctuation. Somebody here must be busting open a nice batch of crow to eat this morning. We’re actually a very Uni Watch-friendly franchise, with our team required to rock “Pelican blue” (read: powder blue) stirrups for every game. In fact, we were the featured team in the Wall Street Journal story about stirrups a month or two ago in which Paul was quoted. I’m proud that my first job as a Minor League Baseball broadcaster has come with a team that “Gets It (TM).” … Christopher Falvey was watching a few days ago and noticed some guy had “NOLA” (my first thought is the abbreviation for New Orleans, LA) on the back of his jersey. He thought for a second that somehow they were doing a tribute to the city of New Orleans, which would have been strange. Turns out there’s a guy on the team with the last name of Nola. … With details now emerging on the upcoming Civil Rights Game, Joe Owen found this from the Cincinnati Enquirer: “On Saturday, the Reds and White Sox will wear uniform jerseys circa 1964, the year the Civil Rights Act was passed to outlaw racial segregation in schools, public places and employment.” He’s not sure what exactly they mean by “circa”, but he’s guessing we’ll see “fauxbacks” of these for the White Sox (Powder blues!) and these for the Reds (Ice Cream man) … John English has never seen this logo before (the description reads: “This celebrates the New York Islanders winning the Stanley Cup. Says Islanders in the middle. Stanley cup on top and 2 hockey sticks. It is very high quality”). He asks, “Have you?” … Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: Brinke Guthrie noticed that the New York Giants & Timex have inked a sponsorship deal, with the watch logos to go on the jerseys … Rob McGill found a beauty, and would be remiss in his duties as a Uni Watcher if he didn’t direct a spotlight on the esteemed Alex Trebek, rocking a Habs jersey as a guest panelist on this 1980 episode of Card Sharks (If you’re impatient, you can simply scroll to the 1:20 mark) … Dan Auricchio notes that JC Romero has been kicking it old-school on the road so far this year (assuming 2007 is old school). He noticed this during the Mets/Phils game on June 9th, with Romero rocking the pre-2008 100% wool New-Era caps with the grey underbrim. This picture is from his first game back from suspension, but the same hat (writing and all) was worn for the Met game. Second picture is the now-official New Era cap, with the black underbrim. … The Hungry Hungry Hipster has some information of interest on the Stillers “Batman” jerseys: “I found some really interesting info on the 1967 Steelers jerseys, which were unique because of their yellow shoulders. Before reading the story of these jerseys, here’s what they looked like: Front, Back, and in a Team photo. And here’s the story behind these jerseys. … Finally, Teebz received an email from a friend who suggested he check out The Phoenix Pub blog. The author, under the pseudonym First Derivative, is proposing a Sabremetric system in which NHL defencemen can be ranked. It’s a pretty cool idea, but it’s sitting in the “theory” stage right now as he works through the finer points. If you have a suggestion, make sure you throw your idea in his comment section!
And a quick word from Paul: Good to be home. Big thanks to everyone who showed up last night in Baltimore — great people, great time. I’ll have a full report either tomorrow or early next week, depending on how quickly I sort through all the photos and such.
Super-duper thanks to Phil for steering the ship so expertly in my absence, and to everyone who helped things run smoothly when I was dealing with, well, you know. What with my travels and the nasty case of Real Life that I’ve had to deal with lately, my presence on the site has been diminished, but I look forward to getting back to full Uni Watch throttle next week. Thanks again for your patience, understanding, and support — like I’ve said before, a writer couldn’t hope for a better group of readers than you folks.