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Tim E. Takes On MLB Pro Comb...er, 3D Style

TEOB MLB SplashBy Phil Hecken

Over the past several years, I’ve brought you some pretty amazing guests, many of whom have great artistic skills. You’ve seen the work of Tim E. O’Brien before, as he’s tweaked the NBA quite extensively, but he has also extensively concepted the NFL, and more recently tried his hand at MLB (with Jim “I’d Wear That” Vilk using a two-dimensional font.

But to both of our knowledge, there does not exist out on the Interwebs, a three-dimensional baseball uniform template, a la the football and basketball that are so familiar to Uni Watch readers. So when I approached Tim about this, he did the only thing a graphic artist does when the template he or she is looking for doesn’t exist — he made one. And it’s outstanding.

I could try to recreate just how he went about this (I will admit prodding him into doing it, but that’s as far as any credit I deserve goes) — but I’ll let Tim tell you how this all went down. So without further ado…here’s Timmah:

~~~

MLB, 3D Template Style
By Tim E. O’Brien

One night last week, Phil and I were exchanging a few emails (33 to be exact) and he quickly brought up the idea for this article.

With the prevalence of the Nike Pro Combat and System of Dress uniform templates (which will be henceforth known as ‘the 3D templates’), wouldn’t it be awesome if there was a baseball equivalent?

While this idea was not new to me – I once had tried to request an NHL 3D uniform template from the same person who did the 3D templates – I was not sure how to go about creating a template from scratch.

After deciding I would try and reverse engineer the original 3D uniform templates, the first obstacle was figuring out which image should be used for this theorized template. This is precisely where Phil came in handy.

Not only were we looking for a photo that showed the front of a baseball uni, but we were looking for one that was worn right (read: no pajama pants). Also, we needed something high resolution – very high resolution.

After a few more emails, Phil found this image of Stephen Strasburg. This image was perfect for what we needed for a multitude of reasons. First, it’s huge. Next, not only do we get a pretty straight-on look at his chest, but we also get a good look at his left sleeve and the front of his cap.

So far, so good.

As Strasburg wears high socks, we knew that the template would at least have high socks if not stirrups. Combine that with his awkward pre-pitch stance that allows us to see one leg’s pants piping and we had ourselves the perfect picture to work from.

Now, here came the tricky part:

Not knowing how the previous 3D templates were constructed proved to be an obstacle but one I figured I would overcome by looking at a lot of the 3D templates (many of which can be found here) and finding the similarities.

A few facts quickly revealed themselves. One, I needed to get rid of everything in the background and then replace the parts Strasburg’s uniform that would change with a basic texture.

Next — and this is where the complicated Photoshop stuff came in — I had to rid Strasburg’s uni of any unwanted logos and come up with a base uniform I could then edit. The objective then was to fill in this new blank uni with some color (and stirrups). Once the color was in place and I could edit it and fill the uniform with new logos, I tested out a design I’m quite familiar with.

From there, I created a softball top layer, which can be turned on or off and have its color changed with the easiest of commands. But while all that’s well and good for most uniforms, those teams that sport pinstripes would have to be left out.

As Phil put it, “I mean, the Yanks in ‘snow whites’ would look fine, no?” [I was only half sarcastic — PH]

So my next step was to painstakingly draw on pinstripes for both the jersey and pants. Finally, I created a layer to hide that pesky pants piping and voila, a complete uniform template.

Now while I have shown you the current Chicago White Sox uniform set in the previous description, that is not a uniform concept. So, what follows are some of my ideas in practice with the new 3D baseball template:

. . .

Angels: Home and Road — I don’t like the current Angels unis and I’m not even sure why. I do like these older logos a lot (especially the sleeve patch because whatever city you decide to say you’re from, it’s in CA and probably covered by that star) so I included them on a ‘West Coast Braves’ sort-of vibe.

Astros: Home, Road, Road Alt and Just For Fun — The ‘Stros old uniforms were much more original that their current red + script = blah uniform set. And who doesn’t love the sunrise?

Blue Jays: Home, Alternate and Road — Pretty much a throwback sans-pullover.

Brewers: Home, Road, Road Alt — Some of my favorite stuff I’ve done so far. I love the MB mitt and I wanted it to remain the cap logo but the Wisconsin and M logo and the swinging Beer Barrelman logo are too good not to include in the set.

Cubs: Home, Home Alt, Road and Road Alt — The home alternate is almost verbatim what they wear today but the home and road are slight tweaks on their current set. The road alternate is a road pinstripe — somthing Phil advised against — but I say this look is too classic to throw away.

Indians: Home, Home Alt, Road and Road Alt — Think Wild Thing, only with less Wahoo and more block C. not totally sold on the alt blues but they match the caps great.

Nationals: Home, Home Alt, Road and Road Alt — Strasburg’s actual home team gets an update that includes their awesome script ‘Nationals’ and ‘Washington’ as well as a DC road hat.

Padres: Home and Road – The Swingin’ Friar makes a sleeve appearance as the Fathers go retro.

Rays: Home, Home Alt, Road, Road Alt and Just For Fun — Unless the Rays go through a major overhaul, they will remain painfully boring. But who knows, maybe they’ll add a BRayser alternate like I did…

Reds: Home, Alternate and Road — Because, if your name is the REDS, you should wear a lot of Red. Got rid of the black drop shadow too.

Twins: Home, Home Alt, Road and Road Alt — Not even sure these are very different from what they currently wear but damn do they look good.

White Sox: Home, Home Alt 1, Home Alt 2, Road and Road Alt — Their socks are white but that doesn’t mean we can’t throw a little red back into the color scheme.

Well, that’s it for this week’s tweaks. Things I learned about myself: I like minimal amounts of hat designs, I like script jerseys with numbers, I like softball tops and I love shoulder patches.

To play around with your designs using this new 3D template, go here and download the .PSD version of the template.

~~~

Wow, Tim. That’s pretty amazing stuff. And as with your football concepts, which are pretty traditional, I really like most of these — like… A LOT. Many of them stand out, but I particularly love the Reds Home, the Jays Powder and both shockingly and disturbingly, I love this Sox Softball Alt (and I shouldn’t, because there are already too many teams with red softball alts, teams with pins shouldn’t mix in solid tops, and I don’t generally like two-tone caps). Yet, despite all that — I freakin’ love that concept — I think the stirrups are the glue that holds it all together. Great job, Tim, just fantastic. I can’t wait to see what you have in store for the A’s and the Mets (and any other teams you didn’t tweak, but those two in particular, since I have my own solid opinions on how to make them look right, once and for all).

OK, readers — how about you? How great is this, huh? Please let Tim know what you think — not just of the actual tweaks, but of the entire talent that went into producing this great template.

Be sure to check out Tim’s website to see more of his outstanding concepts.

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colorize thisColorize This!

Occasionally, I will be featuring wonderful, high-quality black and white photographs that are just begging to be colorized.

We took last weekend off, hoping to get some new blood into the colorizations, and we have succeeded. While this is still the G&G show, a couple non-G&G entries did come in. And they are good.

We start off today with one of those, a new colorizer, Andy, from the Dick Allen Hall of Fame:

Hi Phil

I want to share this “colorized” image I did this afternoon.

If you think it is good enough, please feel free to show it off on UNIWATCH.

The image appears here.

Thanks.
Andy @ Dick Allen Hall of Fame

~~~

Next up is a B&W beaut, hopefully to be colorized, from Terry Proctor:

Dear Phil,

This picture of Tom Terrific would look great colorized. The colors are Royal Blue and Orange. Very fortunate because of the Suns being a Mets farm club from ’65-’68. The team used those colors from their inception as a Cleveland team in 1962. The Cardinals were there for 1964 and them the Mets. In 1969 the AAA Suns moved to Tidewater as the Tides. I saw the Suns (and later the Tides) play many times in Rochester.

The cap is Royal with an Orange “J.” The “Suns” lettering on front is Royal with an Orange outline. The “Sun” logo is mostly Orange with Royal Blue details. The undershirt and “junior-high prom” belt are Royal Blue. That belt was elastic with leather tabs.

Terry

Great picture, Terry. Lets hope the colorizers will give that one a shot.

~~~

One of the G&G tandem, George Chilvers, recently had his work “published” — and it’s a great shot:

“Local Press”

~~~

The second half of the G&G Boys, Gary Chanko, was next:

Phil,

The first photo was included in the recent There’s No Service Like Wire Service, Vol. 29. Because it was a former Phillies player I had to colorize it. Unfortunately I can’t come up with his name. The time period is somewhere between the early Fifties and late Sixties, a right handed pitcher with a number ending in “3.”

So my search to find out the player’s name lead me to another interesting photo.

The photo was taken on September 10, 1930 at the Highland Estates Country in South Carolina. Astute golf and baseball fans should be able to identify these guys.

Gary

Great job, as always, Gary.

~~~

And, as always, here’s George again with some beautiful colorizations:

Hi Phil

This is Jimmy Speirs who captained Bradford City when they won the FA Cup in 1911. I’ve always liked those shirts, but had never seen them in full colour (Bradford currently wear stripes – nice enough but this yoke effect is quite stunning).

George also included this picture (in black & white) of George Pickett (and in living color). He does so to set up the following words of advice, for those who’d like to try their hand at colorization:

I’ll try and get some words together about actual technique, but this picture I think epitomises a fair bit of what I want to say to encourage people to try.

Don’t try to run before you can walk. Take a head and shoulders like this and have a go. There are actually only six colours in this piece – I have them as separate layers, but if your programme doesn’t support layers (or it’s a bit difficult to sort what they’re all about) it can still all be done on one layer – it’s just a bit more difficult to fix if you go wrong. In this pic there’s claret, amber, skin, background (blue), hair and lips. That’s all! The skill is in getting just the right tone to suit, and then very carefully selecting the areas.

If you try to do a full panoramic of all 87 players of the 1903 Chicago Gallopers or whoever you’ll get bored, it won’t work and it’ll get complicated. At least at first. You’ll give up and never know what you can achieve.

Have a go at something simple. Wikipedia has loads of good suitable pics, even non-sport (I’ve attached General George Pickett as an example). Alternatively Google whoever you want, or maybe your team, and filter by asking for just medium or large pictures in black and white – that way you’re likely to eliminate all the modern full-colour pictures and you can home in on suitable targets that will be big enough to have a reasonable go at. Try and pick something you can reasonably finish in one or two sittings. I know some of mine take ages, but very often I’ll do another in between. As I mentioned to you th eother day, I’ve strated on the Ebbets Field picture – but it’s big and complex and fiddly. So I’ve done these two in between just to lighten my day :)

I’ll try and put something together on actual techniques (and I may do another “head and shoulders” (no, not the shampoo) as I don’t think I’ll get Ebbets Field finished soon).

Best wishes

George

Thanks again, George.

The reason George added that to his usual fare was to kind of *jumpstart* a few of you would-be colorizers out there — start small and build up to it. He has wonderful advice.

~~~

For now, we have Tom Terrific and the floor is open to any other colorizations you would like to try. I really encourage anyone who wants to give this a shot to do so, and use George’s words of advice and suggestions. If you’re still apprehensive about giving this a shot, well…

Next weekend, I plan to feature Gary Chanko in a colorization tutorial, wherein he will teach and explain the techniques and tricks he uses to colorize black and white photographs. It should be wonderful and I hope it will get a few more of you into this excellent (if time-consuming) hobby/artform. Gary will be explaining how he worked on the Philly Pitcher he colorized for today’s entry.

Thanks again to all, and especially Gary & George, the G&G boys. See you next weekend with a tutorial.

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Benchies HeaderBenchies

by Rick Pearson

~~~

Never know when that game changing moment’s gonna come up…

5-15-11 s-Moon

And here’s the full-size, of course. Ouch.

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all sport uni tweaksUni Tweaks

We have another nice of tweaks today.

If you have a tweak, change or concept for any sport, send them my way.

Remember, if possible, try to keep your descriptions to ~50 words (give or take) per tweak. You guys have been great a keeping to that, and it’s much appreciated!

And so, lets begin:

~~~

We start with Isaac Schemm, who has an arena league (what?) concept:

Attached is a uniform concept for the Milwaukee Mustangs of the Arena Football League. I based the unis on the Packers (and the Wikipedia template). I think a simple, classic uniform reflects a “get down to business” attitude that fits an arena football team well.

~~~

Next up is Ron Rowland, who is back with more baseball concepts:

Hi Phil,

A couple more designs following up the Brewers’ tweak from last weekend:

Oakland A’s

I love the alt jersey they’ve broken out this year, which is a nice nod to the Swingin’ A’s of the 70’s and their three World Series championships. WIth the buttons and collar piping, it also remind me of the alt home jersey they had back in the Billyball days of the early 80’s. So I created a set based on some of those aesthetics.

Home: Almost a direct recreation of the ’82-’84 alt home uniform but with smaller sleeve piping moved up slightly from the edge. THe centerpiece being the use of the iconic “A’s” type over the left breast.

Road: A gray variation of the same design, but with the green and gold inverted on the logo and player number for more dramatic pop off the gray. Gold logo/number, green piping. Also, picking up on this inversion, a gold cap with a green logo and bill, which is a nod to the batting helmets of the late 60’s early 70’s unis, featured here in Reggie Jackson’s 1971 All-Star Game roof clearing home run off Doc Ellis (sorry couldn’t find a color version)

Alt: Almost a straight iteration of the terrific set they’re using this year but with simpler piping configuration.

Chicago Cubs Road Uni

Living in Chicago for two decades, I’ve seen my share of different looks the Cubbies have used on the road with varied success. Here’s I’ve combined their “Walking Cub” logo that’s currently used on their current road alts now onto a solid gray uniform with some traditional piping configurations. To spice it up, I’ve added a blue drop shadow to the red numbers on front and back.

Thanks! Have a great weekend!

~~~

Finally, we have a tweak from Tommy M., who has a Golden State entry:

I don’t like the Warrior’s new jersey because I think the front logo is too busy. I like the retro look though.

~~~

That’s all folks. More next weekend.

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Negro ThrowbackBraves & Phils Throwback

Yesterday afternoon in Atlanta, the Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies played a throwback game honoring the negro league players of each respective team. Each team wore uniforms depicting the year 1938, playing as the Atlanta Black Crackers and Philadelphia Stars.

The Braves wore gorgeous cream colored unis, with navy blue caps and navy stirrups, with a white-red-white northwestern pattern. The Black Crackers began play in 1919 and lasted through 1952, joining the Negro Southern Leage in 1920 and the Negro American League in 1938. I didn’t see the game, but it appeared as though the players wore dark sanis while the coaches wore the white undersocks. Conventional wisdom says the Black Crackers got their monicker from the minor league Atlanta Crackers, with whom they shared Ponce de Leon Park.

The Phillies wore beautiful gray uniforms, with a very ornate wordmark (resembling that which the Mets wear today), with a very unique “split”: the shortened city name, “PHILA” on the right side of the jersey, with the team name, “STARS”, on the left breast. You can read more about the Stars history here. The Stars were founded back in 1933 and used to play games at Passon field and the 44th and Parskide ballpark in West Philly, and occasionally played games at Shibe park on Monday nights.

Today, as part of the second half of “Civil Rights Weekend,” the Braves will turn the clock back to 1974, to honor Hammerin’ Hank Aaron. Both teams will wear fauxbacks from that era. The Phillies will don powder blue unis (although in 1974, they had zipper fronts), and the Braves will sport white pullovers with raglan sleeves, which do appear to be pretty accurate repros. (Of course, we’ll have to wait to see what they trot out to be sure).

The game takes place at 1:35 pm eastern, and the good news is, it’s on TBS, so most of us should be able to watch it. If you can’t be by the tube, be sure to set your DVR’s now.

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atlantabraves5Parting Shots

• Paul pointed me towards this interesting article from Can’t Stop The Bleeding about today’s Phillies/Braves game entitled, “MLB’ Civil Rights Game: Nice Idea, Shame About One Of The Participants. If you couldn’t glean from the title, it is, not surprisingly, about whether Atlanta’s great strides in the Civil Rights movement is summarily undermined by their MLB club using a “racist” name (and iconography). Give it a read.

• While the author seems both biased and with an agenda, he brings up some valid observations. Does the Braves continued use of their name and the “Tomahawk Chop” continue to do harm to Native Americans in particular and civil rights of all people in general?

• I’m not sure why he drags the Cleveland Indians into this particular article, but it does reinforce the notion that the Braves are not alone in their use of Native American imagery, a caricature which is less than flattering.

• What about this line, “The same can’t be said for the actions of the paying customers, however, who see no irony in attending something that’s meant to mark “Civil Rights Weekend” while Tomahawk chopping during Kyle Kendrick’s warm-up tosses in the last of the 6th inning.”? Braves fans are by no means the only fans who “tomahawk chop,” but why are they now seemingly being singled out for this?

• Then there is this, “There’s also the unfortunate timing of Roger McDowell returning from suspension just in time for this weekend’s series, as if you needed any reminder that while toiling as one of the Braves’ most beloved players, John Smoltz famously compared same-sex marriage to getting hitched to Mr. Ed.” In case you missed it, McDowell had been suspended for two weeks when he uttered this homophobic slur towards three men in San Francisco, “Are you guys a homo couple or a threesome?” Now, anti-gay taunts are nothing new in sports, and it’s good they are being punished. But are the members of the Braves (and past players to boot) really representative of the team or the city of Atlanta?

• I don’t like the Braves’ and Indians’ use of caricatures, and I believe the Redskins name and logo is one the most offensive and racist in all of sports, and really should have been changed years ago. But is the author taking things too far by attacking the Braves and their fans? Or is there a larger point to be made here that as far as we have come as a society, we still have a long way to go — and maybe MLB’s Civil Rights weekend is a good time for such grievances to be aired?

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Happy5thcake-viAnd Finally…

It’s a little early, but I wanted to offer Paul a HUGE CONGRATS in advance, as Uni Watch celebrates its Fifth Anniversary this Tuesday. Been an amazing journey since you threw out that First Pitch.

What a long, strange trip it’s been for this blog — thanks for taking us along for the ride.

Here’s to FIVE MANY MORE great years, buddy! All the best.

Everyone have a great Sunday.

~~~

I don’t much care for blogs; I don’t even like word blog. But until we come up with a better term, this here thing you’re now reading is a blog devoted to the details of sports uniform design. — Paul Lukas, 17 May, 2006

 

240 comments to MLB “Pro Combat” er…3D Template Style

  • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 7:22 am |

    Nice work on the 3d template.

    Don’t worry though, I’m not going to be redoing any of my concepts in 3d.

    …and I’m going to stay out of the Braves/Indians/Redskins thing today.

  • skott daltonic | May 15, 2011 at 7:30 am |

    native american team names / logos.

    let’s face it, it’s wrong. they may look amazing (blackhawks) they may look utterly racist (indians) but either way,they are not right.

    there is no way a rational person can defend using another people’s culture as a sports team. especially a people that was nearly wiped out in a genocide.

    for once, the NCAA has done something right in this regard.

    the braves:
    the name is innocuous enough so get rid of the “s” and any/all native american symbolism and make it about the Freedom Riders or other amazing Atlanta/Southern heroes. (not the one’s who wore gray in the 1860s)

    the Indians:
    it all has to go. all of it. Wahoo is a racist disgrace.

    the Blackhawks:
    love the logo, it’s iconic, but unless there’s some shit in writing from the tribe, it’s got to go.

    the Redskins:
    obviously, the worst.name.ever.
    the fact that this hasn’t been changed just proves how people regard native americans as “something” not “someone”. obviously, this name would never fly for any other minority in the united states, so ditch it.
    i don’t know/care how to replace it (maybe use the Blue team from the 1860s) but it’s a godamn disgrace.

    i’m sure people will say how i’m a bleeding heart, but while true, keep in mind that we’re talking about people who live in the united states. they are not symbols of anything, be it proud or red. they are people and children, who got F’d by this country and are trying to rebound and reclaim their culture and heritage.

    let’s just keep sports teams after animals and sox.

    • Morte | May 15, 2011 at 8:08 am |

      Please don’t speak for us. While I hate the term ‘indian,’ it’s not about the team, it’s about people calling my people ‘indians,’ which happens outside of Cleveland, so I don’t attribute it to that.

      And as for Redskin, learn your history, Amerinds used that to describe ourselves to European settlers, not the other way around.

      • Juke Early | May 15, 2011 at 9:17 am |

        Due to heritgae, you may or may not know more about the usage of “red skin” by Amerinds. Though, it certainly was used as a pejorative ( and did have a darker meaning ) – naturally depending on the intent of the person saying it. I just think it’s a bad choice for a team name in the US Capitol. As for “Braves” – that was a European word from Latin “bravos” which could apply to any young man & did there, before it became synonymous w/Native American male warriors. It’s a good name. It’s the imagery most of us question as to whether ot not it’s appropriate. Most people would feel a positive association with courage & winning. Icons such as Chief Wahoo, though, are just insulting. Anyone who can’t see that, has no eyes.

        • Juke Early | May 15, 2011 at 9:19 am |

          errata: heritage

          I can’t speak for anyone and/or type for them either. . ..

    • DJ | May 15, 2011 at 8:59 am |

      the Blackhawks:
      love the logo, it’s iconic, but unless there’s some shit in writing from the tribe, it’s got to go.

      Dunce. You seem to assume the team is named after the “Blackhawk tribe.” They are not. Unlike your other examples, the Blackhawks are named after a specific human being — Ma-ka-tai-me-she-kia-kiak, a leader of the Sauk nation (Specifically, they are named after the 333rd Machine Gun Batallion of the 86th Infantry Division of WWI, which was named the Black Hawk Division). Accordingly, based on your logic, the only persons who could object to the use of his name and “image” are his direct descendants.

      One argument you might have made is that the team’s logo is not an accurate depiction of Black Hawk, but one could argue that certain statutary representations of Black Hawk resemble the team’s logo.

      http://en.wikipedia....(Sauk_leader)

      • FormerDirtDart | May 15, 2011 at 10:46 am |

        Wouldn’t it make more sense for the Blackhawks logo to represent the 86th Infantry Division, if they are named after them?
        http://upload.wikime...

    • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 9:24 am |

      I’m not going to defend the Redskins name or either Chief Wahoo or Chief Nockahoma, but to me the name Braves is equivalent to any number of teams named after military ranks. A brave was a partisan warrior so it’s no more an insult to invoke the image of a brave being a fierce fighter than for the Patriots to invoke the image of the Minutemen or for the University of Mississippi to use the Rebels nickname. Without a caricatured mascot it’s simply a military name that implies strength, discipline, and prowess, just like any other military nickname.

      Indians is harder to justify, but as long as we can accept Celtics, Fighting Irish, and Ragin’ Cajuns as acceptable team names then it seems like a moot point to me.

    • DanKing9 | May 15, 2011 at 10:03 am |

      I can only say my views of the Indians as they are the team I grew up watching. The only people I’ve ever seen or heard about protesting the name of the team are non-Native Americans. No doubt there are Native Americans that would like the name to be changed, but the vocal ones about it are acting offended when they are not directly affected by the name. Even as a little kid I realized one simple thing Chief Wahoo is a CARTOON, nothing more. If you see it as a direct representation of Native Americans, then yes it is racist, but then I think you’ve got other issues. I can’t say if its right or wrong, but neither can you.

      • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 10:33 am |

        I’m a lifelong Indians fan too and I have no problem with the name, but Chief Wahoo needs to go. He’s a caricature, not a cartoon, so he is intended to be a representation of a Native American. It is an offensive image. You can justify the Fighting Irish mascot as being a leprechaun and therefore not supposed to look like a human Irishman, but Chief Wahoo is different and needs to be retired.

        • Douglas | May 16, 2011 at 2:42 pm |

          “He’s a caricature, not a cartoon, so he is intended to be a representation of a Native American.”

          A caricature is a exaggerated version of a real person or thing. A cartoon is the medium in which you will find things like a caricature. Political Cartoons most often include caricatures of politicians. Its not meant to be an exact representation of a Native American but it is meant to invoke the image of a Native American by showcasing a bunch of stereotypes/ feature exaggerations (which makes it a little more offensive because it isn’t even meant to represent Native Americans correctly).

          I sincerely doubt that the Indians are trying to offend anyone (or that they were trying to do so when they first adopted the name) but there are so many things wrong with their image/name. Plus the outrage over it comes from just as many Native Americans as politically correct people who assume its offensive (those that feel names that aren’t offensive are offensive because they must be offensive… if you consider Braves offensive you fall onto this list)

      • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 11:02 am |

        Hey, it’s just a cartoon, and if you think it’s racist or anything, then that means you’re the one who’s got a problem, right?

        I’ve come around on most Indian-related team names. Most of them are not inherently derogatory. Even the tomahawk chop seems perfectly un-objectionable to me. At least on racial grounds; it’s stupid and annoying, but the whole point of America is that we are free to do stupid and annoying things. It just doesn’t fit with my experience that anyone doing the tomahawk chop is thinking anything at all about Native Americans, much less anything specific or derogatory. It’s on a level with the Hamm’s Beer jingle, not an Indian Wars reenactment.

        But Chief Wahoo? Seriously? If one doesn’t have a problem with that, then one has no grounds for objecting to Black Sambo cartoons or blackface minstrelry. And if one has so debased one’s ethical standards, in order to defend a mere sports team logo, that one cannot object to such obviously vile, indeed evil, trash as that, then one might as well join the Klan. It’s really that simple. One either has moral standards sufficient to object to bigotry, or one does not, and there are no conceivable logically consistent grounds for objecting to some demeaningly bigoted cultural depictions but not to Chief Wahoo.

        As to the Redskins name, I am more understanding. Any defense of the Redskins is necessarily based on ignorance, and I’m so deeply sympathetic. Many people simply don’t know that the name was adopted by one of the two or three most notorious racial bigots in the history of American sports, or they have never lived near enough to Native American communities to hear the word still used today by white people as a vicious racial insult exactly equivalent to “nigger.” If one knows the history of the name, or if one has witnessed white people protesting against Native American treaty rights or economic development, then one pretty much must object to the Redskins name. It’s easy to see how one who lacks that knowledge or experience would wonder what all the fuss is about.

        But setting aside the two obviously objectionable examples of the racist cartoon and the racist name, I do tend to think that a blanket objection to any Native American iconography goes too far. In fact, I think it’s even plausible that eliminating all Indian references would be worse than keeping the status quo. Indians were the first Americans – I think Canada gets it right by using the term “First Nations” – and the larger problem is not that we are too much aware of the native heritage, but that we are too little aware of it. And that’s where I think the NCAA eventually got it right: Use of Indian iconography imposes a special responsibility to use that iconography respectfully. To ask permission, and to honor, not merely exploit or make fun of, the heritage one is coopting.

        • DanKing9 | May 15, 2011 at 11:25 am |

          That’s not at all what I meant, but I didn’t exactly word it well.

    • Douglas | May 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm |

      The team names aren’t meant to be offensive, they are meant to honor. You don’t keep a name for close to 100 years (like the Braves have) ironically, or with the intent to offend.

      The fact that you can take a name like Braves and consider it offensive is a little perplexing (Considering the term refers to brave Warriors). Let’s not forget that the Braves have eliminated any images of Native Americans from their uniforms and said logos can only be found on throwback merchandise (and even then there is a lot more of that merchandise featuring the lowercase ‘a’).

      I’m not going to touch the Indians (the term is considered incorrect and the logo is a caricature which doesn’t help their image, and though the name isn’t meant to offend, it certainly does).

  • JAson | May 15, 2011 at 7:34 am |

    I have two baseball teams that I root for and both are represented in today’s post.

    As a Nationals fan, I find it VERY disturbing to see Strasburg in so many other uniforms!

    As an Indians fan, I’m ready for the crap-storm that will fill the comments today about how racist they are, but let’s be more proactive & uni-centric. Why don’t we combine the new 3D template & the Indians/Braves post to start a contest to re-brand the teams with more politically correct nicknames? I’d love to see some ideas of what the Indians could become!

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:04 am |

      “Why don’t we combine the new 3D template & the Indians/Braves post to start a contest to re-brand the teams with more politically correct nicknames? I’d love to see some ideas of what the Indians could become!”

      What a GREAT idea Jason

      • Just Jim | May 15, 2011 at 11:07 am |

        I have no talent for uniform design, so I figure I’ll just use my words. My grandparents lived in Atlanta for awhile, and my dad was born there. My grandfather started rooting for the Braves when they first moved to Atlanta in 1966. On the other hand, I honestly didn’t become a Braves fan until their World Series run in 1991 (which has to be the longest bandwagon ride in history).

        Anyway, I really don’t have an opinion on the current nickname, but the chose for changing the name was always obvious to me. I would keep most of the basic uniform design (colors, fonts, “A” logo). The only real change would be to go from a tomahawk to a hammer. In honor of the Home Run King himself, introducing the Atlanta Hammers.

    • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 11:09 am |

      Frightening indeed to see the Strassiah in so many non-Nats unis! Though great to see him in so many very good Nats uni concepts.

      I think the Indians are well on the way to doing exactly that. Chief Wahoo has been significantly downgraded in the last few years. The team is a complete mess, uni-wise, but most of the mess consists of excellent uniforms in which Chief Wahoo plays very little part. The block C caps are both very distinctive, and the block-lettered jerseys work with the non-Wahoo caps to make for a very strong, very Cleveland-ish, aesthetic. I think we’re seeing a very positive evolution there, uni-wise. If anything, I’d like to see Chief Wahoo’s feather added to the block C. Make the feather Clevelands equivalent of Atlanta’s tomahawk symbol, and voila! Problem solved.

  • BoH | May 15, 2011 at 7:51 am |

    Why does anyone assume a team called The Braves is even remotely racist? Isn’t being a brave a noble thing? And why are so many non-Native Americans getting so offended on behalf of other people who may or may not be themselves offended? Where’s the outrage over the Fightin’ Irish? Or the Padres? This race to the politically correct shibboleth needs to stop. As a person who comes from a planet which gets its energy from a star I’m offended by the Astros! My name isn’t Bill, but that team from Buffalo needs to go! Gimme a break.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:16 am |

      This is a poor argument at best. The Irish (my last name is O’Brien, I think I know what I’m talking about) are not a race. And I hate Notre Dame (this has nothing to do with anything, I just really fucking hate ND) and I believe the ‘fighting’ part of their name goes back to honor the boys of WWI or WWII (just like Fighting Illini, whom I also hate)- it has nothing to do with my people’s penchant for drunken fisticuffs.

      ‘Padre’ is literally what you call a priest in spanish.

      Bill’s are not a race. Once again, I know this from personal experience, my brother and father are Bills (or, rather, Williams) and they are not their own unique race.

      And I don’t think the name Braves is what MOST people get upset about. It’s the old logo, the racist chant, the tomahawk and junk. it’s just in poor taste. It’s be like calling a team the hard workers and then having the logo be a set of slave shackles…

      • DJ | May 15, 2011 at 8:46 am |

        The “fighting” in “Fighting Irish” was not used to honor WWI or WWII soldiers, but is merely an adjective to denote fighting spirit (the name was officially adopted in the 1920s, so it certainly couldn’t have honored WWII soldiers).

      • Cody | May 15, 2011 at 8:49 am |

        Longtime reader, first time commenter… mainly because I’m a huge Braves fan and part Native American.

        I must point out that your slave shackles comment would be more applicable if a team’s mascot had to do with black heritage. THAT would be offensive.

        But calling a team the hard workers and giving them shackles just wouldn’t make sense. You’d probably give them hardhats, jackhammers, or maybe even lunch pails in the on-deck circles for the pine tar (which would actually be pretty cool). You are giving them the tools their mascot used.

        Braves used tomahawks, and tomahawks are still used today by some members of the military. That’s how fearsome that weapon is. It’s like calling a team the SEALs or Delta Force and utilizing a Blackhawk or an M4 in their imagery.

        As for the Padres, I don’t see how some Catholics aren’t offended by the swinging friar logo. It doesn’t exactly make him look “dignified.” Not that I have a problem with it, but if you’re going to be offended by the Braves, you should probably be offended by that and the Fighting Irish (which, by the way, it doesn’t seem they were named after World War soldiers: http://nd.edu/~wcawl...). Gotta admit though, their logo doesn’t do them any favors in regards to not making them look like drunk Irish guys.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:58 am |

          I was being a bit hyperbolic with the whole slave thing, haha.

          As for Padres. Catholic Monks have done more than enough over the centuries to prove that they are anything but dignified (says a man raised Catholic in Catholic school for 13 and taught by Benedictine Monks). Monks who take vows of silence would come up with sign language to communicate jokes and non-essential stuff defeating the original vow.

          Many European monasteries still produce liquor of some sort (and many liquors are said to have been invented by monks).

          I knew Monks, personally, who swore.

          Monks are people, they’re not perfect, and i’m sure more than a few have swung a baseball bat in full regalia.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 10:33 am |

          As I recall, Friar Tuck was skilled with both the broadsword and quarterstaff.

          And I’ve made this point before, “Braves” references a group inside an etnicity that possesses particular admirable qualities that cross racial and ethnic boundaries. But the tomahawk chant and chopping were a little much, to be sure.

          A parallel might be that to call a team the “Jews” would be all wrong, but to choose “Maccabees” would be pretty good.

          Kind of a cool name, actually.

          There you, the Nets could become the Brooklyn Maccabees.

        • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 11:13 am |

          “the Nets could become the Brooklyn Maccabees.”

          ~~~

          wait…what?

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 11:43 am |

          When they move, supposedly. Just throwing another name into the mix with “Brooklyn Knights” n’ all.

      • BoH | May 15, 2011 at 11:27 am |

        For the record I’m Irish and Catholic and not the least bit offended by the ND or SD teams. My larger point is when folks who are not part of a particular group start dressing up in the noble robes of offended-dom on behalf of folks who may or may not be themselves offended. For a perfect example look what happened with the North Dakota Fighting Sioux. My comments about the Irish, Padres, Bills and Astros where hyperbole – if you take the “racist” argument to it’s logical conclusion you end up in coo-coo-ville.

        • DanKing9 | May 15, 2011 at 11:34 am |

          That was the point I was trying to make earlier, but I am not the best my words. Thank you

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:56 am |

          Yeah, but if you don’t think Wahoo is racist (and even I still have it on the unis cause I know Clevelanders and I don’t think it’s going anywhere anytime soon) you’re wrong.

        • DanKing9 | May 15, 2011 at 12:23 pm |

          Yes tim b/c if my opinions don’t match up with yours then one of us must be wrong

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:28 pm |

          Sometimes, yes.

          If your opinion was that blacks should be subjugated as slaves for the white man, you would be wrong.

          If your opinion was that the Cubs are way cooler than the White Sox, then that is a subjective opinion.

          Wahoo isn’t a subjective opinion.

        • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 12:38 pm |

          For a perfect example look what happened with the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.

          Exactly. A bunch of white people embraced the putative offensiveness of the name as a positive virtue, spent ten years and tens of millions of dollars mounting in-your-face, to-hell-with-you-all, how-dare-you-drunken-savages-tell-us-what-to-call-our-damn-mascot campaigns in favor of the name, adopted along the way an obscene pose as victims of racism, then only at the last minute even considered the possibility of maybe asking permission from the local Sioux tribe, and then were completely mystified why tribal authorities weren’t in a hurry to offer their stamp of approval.

          UND was the clearest possible example of the way a seemingly innocuous team name can contribute to the debasing of people’s values and the coarsening of our culture. The episode validated the basic conservative point about why it’s important to uphold standards of decency even though we are free, as a matter of law, to behave indecently. The ultimate result of accepting any wrong thing is that the defense of that wrong inevitably leads to the active embrace of other like wrongs.

          That’s why, with moral questions, it’s sometimes important to step back from the particular issue at hand and look at the wider implications. If we justify this instance, what other instances will our justification also sanction? That’s why it’s significant to note that accepting the arguments in favor of Chief Wahoo require us to accept the worst instances of obviously vile Black Sambo cartoons and blackface minstrel performances, whereas accepting the arguments in favor of the name “Braves” requires us only to accept universally unobjectionable team names such as “Vikings” and “Spartans.” (Though why any American would wish to honor a society as fundamentally evil as ancient Sparta is another question!) Defending Chief Wahoo requires a fundamental debasement of one’s moral values; defending the Braves name does not. This is a morally significant fact.

          Likewise, the disgraceful conduct that characterized so many defenders of the Fighting Sioux name over the last decade goes a long way toward demonstrating that the name itself was unacceptable. If the name truly had been honorable and respectful, then the defense of the name would have produced honorable and respectful conduct. That it did not proves that it was not.

  • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 7:59 am |

    If sports teams referencing native Americans are offensive, wouldn’t a sports team named after a group of people that used to kill native Americans be even worse? Cowboys? Texas Rangers? If I were of that ethnicity, that’s what would make me angry.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:08 am |

      Well, not all Cowboys killed Indians, this isn’t a 1950s movie. A Cowboy’s job was to literally protect a farm’s cattle – i would imagine most real cowboys never killed a human being.

      And Texas Rangers still exist today, and they don’t do much killing. Walker just uses his mighty fist of justice.

      • Morte | May 15, 2011 at 8:12 am |

        Precisely. A caricature of cowboy, just like a caricature of a ‘native american’ or a caricature of a viking or a caricature of any animal or mythical figure used by other teams is just that, a caricature.

      • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 11:04 am |

        Far be it from me to mess with the mighty fist of justice. :)

  • Morte | May 15, 2011 at 8:06 am |

    @skott daltonic Clearly you are not a member of any Native American tribe. Please quit speaking for us.

    @BoH Thank you. We can decide for ourselves what offends us.

    @The Other Chris Being that ‘cowboys’ didn’t really exist the way we think of them, and the Texas Rangers are a Texan institution, and an office that still operates, those terms don’t really bother me, or any other Amerind I know of. We really don’t have committee meetings to decide on these things, there seem to be plenty of average joes who do that for us.

    • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 9:29 am |

      As a person named Joe, I take offense to that last comment. ;)

  • Jet | May 15, 2011 at 8:14 am |

    I concur Phil, I like nearly all of Tim’s tweaks, simply outstanding, and the stirrups really do put them over the top. I only wish major league baseball looked like that…

    -Jet

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 9:42 am |

      But they don’t.

      So any MLB tweak by anyone, to truly stand up when evaluated, should work with shoe-length pants, too.

      “If people would go back loving really big fins, this design for a Camaro would be fantastic.”

      Just sayin’.

      Great, great template, though, Tim E. and some terrific looks, too. You have a wonderful eye. Not too sure about the apparently mandatory front number. :)

      • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 10:14 am |

        “But they don’t.”

        ~~~

        no, for the most part, they don’t — but some of them do

        and i told tim, while we were discussing what a model should look like that “no way are we gonna have pajama pants” …

        maybe you don’t think stirrups will ever make a comeback (and it does seem they are), but if we continue to put our mocks in the pajama pants, that’s at the very least a tacit acknowledgment that they’re here to stay

        i could even tolerate the softball top (maybe even *like* a few) IF STIRRUPS were worn with them — it is an element that totally brings the whole package together, makes the player LOOK like a real baseball player

        nay, i am proud that tim incorporated the “stirrups/no pajama pants” in his final concept — hopefully this one will be copied by many and seen by MLB teams/players, so they can visualize for themselves how important the stirrup is to the uniform

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 10:48 am |

          Shining our light on the path others should follow?

          Noble, to be sure.

          But to design a uni for MLB today—for right now in the real world—it needs to work with long pants, too.

          The color, contrast and detail visible socks provide can change a look entirely. Not saying shouldn’t show them with stirrups, but probably any Tweaker also should have a long pants template on hand, too, for his own use to check his own work, to see how the uni would look if the the stirrup’s contribution to the overall visual is missing. Because that’s how it’ll be seen about 95% of the time.

          Sadly, MLB’s idea of solving that “lack of color/contrast” problem is dark alt jerseys. And it looks we’re gonna be stuck with it for some time.

          Now, if we’e gonna talk “shoulds.” The Twins have said they want to wear their creams every game at home this year to honor Harmon Killebrew. In a perfect world, they’d also order a bunch of solid navy stirrups to wear at home all year, too, to complete the look. But I’m not holding my breath.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:46 am |

          “Not saying shouldn’t show them with stirrups, but probably any Tweaker also should have a long pants template on hand, too, for his own use to check his own work, to see how the uni would look if the the stirrup’s contribution to the overall visual is missing.”

          Can’t you just cover the socks with you hand? I mean, it’s not like people are putting new patterns on the bottom third of PJ pants…

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:53 am |

          Let me clarify that last remark:

          With stirrups in the template you don’t LOSE any design opportunity that is legal and worn in MLB.

          With PJ pants you lose TWO design opportunities: stirrups, and sanitaries.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 12:41 pm |

          “Can’t you just cover the socks with you hand? I mean, it’s not like people are putting new patterns on the bottom third of PJ pants…”

          Of course.

          But just once I’d like to see someone present tweaks without stirrups/socks, and with shoe-length pants…someone saying, “I don’t necessarily LIKE it, but this is how ny design would most likely be seen.” Just once, something without a certain “my design for new StarFleet unis” vibe.

          The reality is that the two design opportunites (stirrups and sanis) for the moment ARE pretty much lost. So work in that universe.

  • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:22 am |

    IF YOU LIKE WHAT YOU SEE IN MY UNI TWEAKS, PLEASE CHECK OUT TimEOBrien.com FOR MORE OF MY WORK.THERE YOU WILL FIND ALL SORTS OF UNI TWEAKS, LOGO CHANGES, A FORM TO CONTACT ME, A T SHIRT SHOP AND MORE.

    • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 8:24 am |

      turn off your caps lock you fruit! :P

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:31 am |

        I was trying to attract attention, The. I can’t change colors or anything so I had to resort to iYelling.

        • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 8:36 am |

          I’m just messing with you, man. I’ve got nothing better to do right now.

          You should have had Phil put that link in the post… the sane people are probably going to avoid the comments due to the obviously high probability of racial discussion today.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 8:40 am |

          There is a link to a page on my site in the lede but it’s not to the home page. I just thought I’d throw that in down here. Although it’s 7:40 local time and the day’s traffic is already bigger than the past two days combined.

        • Coleman | May 15, 2011 at 9:01 am |

          Your work should attract plenty of attention on its own Tim. I haven’t read any further into todays story than your description of how you designed your 3D template because I had to come directly down here and tell you how amazing it is to see that process step-by-step. Once again, your work is just wonderful. Thanks for all ya do buddy. I might have to try out a Pirates tweak now!

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 9:04 am |

          Thank you very much Coleman.

    • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 9:51 am |

      tim~

      sorry, i usually put a link to your site in the main article — added it now

      but mr. mullins is right — your work will attract plenty of attention on its own

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 9:52 am |

        Thanks Phil!

    • Terry Proctor | May 15, 2011 at 10:21 am |

      Tim E.-I really like what you did with my Blue Jays. Only don’t you agree with me that placing the bird-‘n-ball logo on the lower front of the jersey and the left sleeve is redundant? I’ve always felt that numbers should go on the left front and the logo on the left sleeve.

      Also, your shade of Royal Blue looks too light. More like Air Force Blue to me. At first I thought the lighter Blue was just for the Jays but then I noticed the Cubbies have the same shade. Could you darken up the Jays’ Royal Blue? Thanks.

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:41 am |

        First and foremost, thanks for the kind words, I’m glad you like the concept.

        Now, by Royal blue, I assume you mean the cap color and whatnot but I can assure you that the cap color (and the other shade of blue used in the words and stripes) come directly from their logos.

        I will not change the shade of blue for two reasons. One, That’s the shade of blue they use, and two, the blue may just appear a bit lighter because of the template (like you may have noticed how the stirrups all appear lighter than caps of the ‘same’ color this is just a foible of the template) but I assure you that all the colors are consistent within the template and are true to the teams’ logos.

        If it’s not perfect, neither is life. That’s why Ceres gave us imaginations.

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:43 am |

        Also the redundancy was not lost on me but I didn’t have the time to create new logos for teams (a retro BJs team would need an all new secondary logo since one – basically – doesn’t exist) so I just threw up the Jay witht the writing on the sleeve.

        I would keep the jay on the front, however, because I think that – and not a number – is what helps make those unis so iconic.

    • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 10:50 am |

      The comments section is not for promoting your own web site. You can link to your name at the top of the comment, but please don’t post comments that simply consist of “Here’s my web site” (and especially don’t do that in all-caps).

      Thanks.`

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:44 am |

        My Bad.

        Sadface.

      • Joe | May 15, 2011 at 3:58 pm |

        Sarcasm with the promotion restrictions?
        I sure hope so. Tim E does so much good for this site that a little promotion is no harm…

  • Steve | May 15, 2011 at 8:46 am |

    “Each team wore uniforms depicting the year 1938, playing as the Atlanta Black Crackers and Philadelphia Stars to honor the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson entering the majors.”

    The 50th anniversary was 1997 (when his number was retired throughout the league). This year would be 64 if I’m not mistaken.

    • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 9:42 am |

      oh man, im a idiot (and i was at that mets/dodgers game in 1997 celebrating the 50th anniversary, when MLB retired #42 leaguewide)… thanks, now fixed

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 10:19 am |

        Every once in a while, a little construction worker guy in Phil’s brain steps out and says, “Oh, no, man, you burned through this section a LONNNNNNG time ago.”

  • George Chilvers | May 15, 2011 at 8:52 am |

    Well – I’m just off to the game to watch my team play West Ham – a game in which one (or maybe both) of us will be relegated out of the Premier League :(

    Wish us luck!!

  • Tom | May 15, 2011 at 9:06 am |

    Anyone think it is ironic that Atlanta is hosting the Civil Rights game/weekend and they have only one African-American (Hayward) on the team?

    • Juke Early | May 15, 2011 at 9:25 am |

      Ironic AND maybe another word. . ..

      BUT – at least Hayward is an extremely good young player. He can play for my team any old day ;-)

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 9:31 am |

      That’s probably more a reflection of the dwindling number of African-Americans in MLB than of any kind of archaic thinking on the part of the Braves.

      • Tom | May 15, 2011 at 2:10 pm |

        I wasn’t suggesting it was intentional or terribly unusual. Just suggesting, as MLB, I might have looked for a team with at least two or three African-American players to host. Let’s assume it was the NL year to host. PHI(4), FLA(2), WSH(2), CIN(3), MIL(5), PGH(3), HSN(3), LA(3), or SD(2) may not have been quite as ironic. Interestingly, STL is the only team with none.

  • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 9:29 am |

    I’m kind of surprised Ty Cobb isn’t trying to spike Bobby Jones in that photo.

  • scott | May 15, 2011 at 9:46 am |

    The Phillies and Braves looked terrific yesterday. And the Braves will look a lot better today than they normally do for Sunday home games, when they wear those red softball eyesores.

  • hodges14 | May 15, 2011 at 9:48 am |

    Ok, the template is nice and all, but the uniforms are BORING!!! Please, I feel like you’re trying to recreate retro jerseys here, and you can pretty much get most of these in the Ebbets Field Flannels or mlb.com store. Heck you could probably buy one of those things in a shop in Cooperstown.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 10:06 am |

      Y’know, I don’t think any of the “tweakers” are saying they’d change every team in the league to their designs, that they’d “theme” the entire sport. It’s more an album of what they they’d do if they had a crack at any of the teams.

      More like “pick one.”

      • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 10:08 am |

        Indeed.

  • Broadway Connie | May 15, 2011 at 9:52 am |

    Superb stuff from George…

    GO, WIGAN!! Slice West Ham! Eschew relegation!

    … and Gary.

    • George Chilvers | May 15, 2011 at 3:51 pm |

      Just got back in after watching one of the great games of my life. What a comeback!

      I won’t be doing any colourising tonight though – the drink or two I’ve had (well.. maybe slightly more than one or two) do not lead to a steady colourising hand lol!

  • Jim Hayden | May 15, 2011 at 9:58 am |

    I won’t mention that technically both the baseball and football Boston Braves were named after the guys who dumped the tea in Boston Harbor – many patriot/political/fraternal groups invoked Native American imagery during the early years of this county (i.e. Tammany Hall, Loyal Order of Red Men, even, eventually, the Boy Scouts)…

    However, I personnaly am offended by the following:

    Jets – fossile fuel powered aircraft cause noise and air pollution

    Nationals/Patriots/Yankees – nationalism can be equated with facism and militarism

    49ers – greedy exploiters of our natural resources

    Pirates/Buccaneers/Raiders – theft, murder, mayhem and rape on the high seas – yay!

    Whalers – lets hunt an entire species to extinction

    Oilers – again, greedy exploiters of our natural resources

    Titans/Giants – hyperthyroidism is no joke

    Saints/Angels – shouldn’t the entire team be celibate then?

    Devils – on the other hand…

    Steelers – exploited labor

    Twins – monozygotic, dizygotic – all equally offended!

    Lions, Tigers, Bears, Bengals, et al – all endangered!

    Wizards – witchcraft, sorcery = Satanism!

    Alouette – (from wiki) “Alouette: a popular French Canadian children’s song about plucking the feathers off a skylark” – bird torture porn by any other name!

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:11 am |

      you forgot:
      Titans: Polytheism, what are we promoting false gods now?

      Angels: Monotheism, what are we promoting Christianity now?

      • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 10:20 am |

        Sports logos are all about stereotypes. Even the Lions – they use the fierce roaring male lion… and in reality, the females are the ones that do all of the hunting and killing.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:23 am |

          to be fair, the Lions are consistently outplayed by their wives and girlfriends in their annual team picnic game…

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 11:12 am |

          What, they’re simply pointing out that the male lion should be revered for figuring out how to be a total couch potato and still be “King.”

          The rest of us, meanwhile, are stuck with the Man’s Prayer from THE RED GREEN SHOW…
          http://www.youtube.c...

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 10:15 am |

      Saw on The History Channel last night that Buccaneers orginally meant, in French, “jerky makers” because that’s what early settlers on the islands of the Carribbean did for commerce. Made and sold jerkey from the meat of wild boars.

      So that would also offend vegetarians, too, I imagine.

      PETA once formally protested the name Packers, btw. Said it “promotes the slaughter of animals.” Really, they did.

      • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 10:37 am |

        Where did they get that from? Aren’t they named after a box-and-carton manufacturer?

      • Simply Moono | May 15, 2011 at 8:58 pm |

        “Saw on The History Channel last night that Buccaneers orginally meant, in French, “jerky makers” because that’s what early settlers on the islands of the Carribbean did for commerce. Made and sold jerkey from the meat of wild boars.

        So that would also offend vegetarians, too, I imagine.”

        In that case, I have the perfect YouTube channel to P.O.PETA.B.A.R. (Piss Of PETA Beyond All recognition). Ladies and gentlemen (mostly gentlemen), I give you… EpicMealTime.

        (http://www.youtube.c...)

        To keep it sports-related, here’s one of their creations for Super Bowl XLV known as “The Sloppy Roethlisberger”, with a EMT logofied top bun and packing approx. 138,226 calories.

        (http://www.youtube.c...)

        Why do Canadians always come up with the best shit?

        And @Paul Lukas: to answer your “Umm, who are you?” question, it’s Terry Duroncelet. I’ve submitted stuff on this site before? Weekends and weekdays? The guy that sent those pictures on what specific ballcaps that gangs prefer? I also sent along those videos of the dancers wearing the letterman sweaters a while back?

    • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 10:36 am |

      You forgot about Vikings. Don’t want to piss off any Norsemen.

    • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 10:45 am |

      You’re missing the point.

      And the point is this: When you steal a continent from a group of people thru a concerted campaign of ethnic cleansing, using those people’s names and imagery as a way to market and sell something is — how shall we put this? — in poor taste.

      You can come up with a jillion alternate examples in an attempt to evade the issue. But until you address this one simple point, you’ve failed to engage with the issue at hand.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 11:01 am |

        Well, yeah. I just didn’t know Buccanneers meant “jerky makers” until last night.

        But it sort of “reverse proves” the point. Over time, things change, and what might have been fine in one era is unacceptable (or at least extremely different) in another.

        Mentioned this before, too. One of Roy Rogers’ B-westerns from the late ’40s is called THE GAY RANCHERO. Guarantee you that title wouldn’t be chosen today, because connotations, or the appropriateness of certain words, change.

        • -DW | May 15, 2011 at 10:59 pm |

          The Cincinnati “Reds” should change their name immediately. We don’t want to offend any communists.

      • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 11:22 am |

        Hey, South Park makes fun of Jews regularly, should we take it off the air because a few people are offended?

        Point being, there’s no right to *not* be offended by anything. Fine, maybe the Redskins/Braves/Indians/etc are in poor taste. That doesn’t mean they need to be changed.

        Now, why anyone would voluntarily associate themselves with a team name that was intended to be offensive is beyond me. I’d think that if being a “redskin” was truly bad, who’d want to play for them?

        “What team do you play for?”
        *said with pride* “I’m a Redskin.”

        Doesn’t seem very negative to me.

        /yeah, so much for staying out of it today

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 11:30 am |

          This is yet another irrelevant counter-example that muddies the waters but does nothing to address the issue at hand. South Park is a humor enterprise that uses calculated mockery and outrage as a means of attempted cultural commentary (sometimes successfully, sometimes not). It’s not in poor taste; it trades in poor taste. That’s its lingua franca.

          The issue remains: Carrying out a campaign of genocide against a particular group is immoral; using that group’s imagery to sell a product just compounds the immorality.

        • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 11:31 am |

          “South Park makes fun of Jews regularly, should we take it off the air because a few people are offended?”

          ~~~

          south park makes fun of everyone regularly — that’s the whole shtick

          and, believe it or not, there are quite a few people who would like to take it off the air

          but the writers don’t *pretend* to be honoring anyone, especially not a race of people — it’s a comedy, designed to provoke responses, not portend to be above racist slurs and racial connotations

          basically what i’m saying is south park:braves/indians/redskins :: apples:oranges

        • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 11:36 am |

          So how far forward in time does guilt travel?

          Am I responsible for the actions of my grandfather in his youth?

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:43 am |

          “So how far forward in time does guilt travel?

          Am I responsible for the actions of my grandfather in his youth?”

          For racist stuff, I think the standard measurement is 3/5ths.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 11:45 am |

          So how far forward in time does guilt travel?

          Am I responsible for the actions of my grandfather in his youth?

          I have a good answer to these questions. But first I want to hear why they’re relevant to the issue at hand. Please explain exactly why these questions matter, and then I’ll be happy to answer them.

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 11:54 am |

          Paul, I will admit that I am torn on the issue of Native American nicknames in sports, for reasons covered here and some not. I won’t even wade into that morass.

          However, I have to take some issue with your statement that: ” using that group’s imagery to sell a product just compounds the immorality.” My issue is not with the validity of your larger point, but rather with the factual foundation upon which it is built. To wit, I don’t know that the motivating factor behind the naming of these teams was to sell merchandise. We can argue about whether it is right or wrong, but can we agree that the intent of these names was to associate the franchise with certain “desirable” characteristics of Native Americans (even if said desirable characteristics in the athletic context are just stereotypes)? Pretty certain that “back in the day” when the subject teams were named, merchandise sales weren’t nearly the motivating factor they are today. Again, my point is not to address whether the “conquerors” naming teams after the “courageous vanquished” is right or wrong, but rather to question your assertion about motivations behind those names.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 11:58 am |

          The product being sold is the team — tickets to the ballgame.

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 12:06 pm |

          Understood. I think my point still holds, though. When these franchises were named, I don’t know that there was any connection between selling tickets to the game and the names of the teams. With some of the oldest franchises, it was the newspapermen who came up with the names that stuck anyway, no? Did the name “Red Sox” really put fannies in the seats? Just saying, this isn’t like today, where naming your minor league team after some local, odd amphibian might lure a few extra customers.

          Just want to emphasize, I think your larger point holds some water, and is certainly worthy of debate: no matter what the motivation, is it right to name your franchise after a victimized “people”? Your answer is “no.” I just think you have to examine what the original motivations were. Even if it was meant as an “honor,” it still may not make it moral or right.

    • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 11:06 am |

      I’m offended by the Mets, but it has more to do with their inability to manage what should be a successful franchise than their name.

    • teenchy | May 15, 2011 at 11:22 am |

      Re Alouettes: is the team named for the bird torture song, or just the bird? If the latter, the only other thing it conjures up is, for people of a certain age, a stubby-looking American compact car.

      • Jim Hayden | May 15, 2011 at 12:09 pm |

        Not liking the sarcasm cap again today, huh? Remember I’m the same guy who got some heat for referring to the Redskins as the Dead-Skins in a uni-tweek a while back.

        IF the name is meant in some way to honor whichever ethnic group, it could be considered acceptable – of course that assumes that an entire ethnic group has a single “voice” – something that simply doesn’t exist.

        I have been under the opinion for years that the NFL franchise in Washington should change its name to “Warriors” – it “clean” (vague?), alliterative, and IIRC was even secured at one point as a potential name for an Arena League team in DC.

        I even designed a uni concept and wordmark basing the team mascot concept on the idea of Greek/Spartan warriors (ala’ the movie 300) – something not used in the NFL since the Portsmouth Spartans moved to Detriot), but very contemporary with modern media (i.e. all those sword-and-sandal TV shows and movies from the last few years – Xena, Spartacus, Gladiator, Clash of the Titans etc.)

        http://i100.photobuc...

        I “borrowed” the wordmark from the Walter Hill movie “The Warriors” (whose story was based on Anabasis by Xenophon – again with the Greeks)

        http://i100.photobuc...

    • hodges14 | May 15, 2011 at 4:00 pm |

      a few more you shoulda added:

      Phillies: I’m pretty sure none of those guys are from Philadelphia

      Texans: There’s more to Texas than Houston

      Brewers: Trying to promote alcoholism?

      Bruins: Please tell me how many bears there are in Boston?

      Padres: Not as holy as you think

      And a blast from the past: Mighty Ducks: Avians on steroids, much?

  • SoCalDrew | May 15, 2011 at 9:58 am |

    Finally, an Angels tweak I liked!

  • Patrick_in_MI | May 15, 2011 at 10:00 am |

    Civil Rights game coverage and a pic of Ty Cobb on the same day?! Irony, thy name is Uniwatch.

  • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:35 am |

    I just received a Red Bull magazine in my Chicago Tribune today.

    It’s called The Red Bulletin – An Almost Independent Monthly Magazine. Tim Linscum is on this particular cover.

    I know Red Bull is trying to advertise itself as a lifestyle but come on, it’s a fucking energy drink.

    Bizarre…

  • TC Mark | May 15, 2011 at 10:43 am |

    A uni tribute that exceeds what any patch would honor (in my opinion): “Twins players decided to wear their cream-colored 1961 throwback uniforms for all remaining home games this year, as a tribute to Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew.”

    http://www.startribu...

    Classy, subtle, appropriate. Nice job Twins players. As a lifelong Twins fan who grew up with them in the 60s and 70s, Harmon was the Twins for many of us. His announcement Friday that he was entering hospice was surprising, sad and a moment to relive many memories as a kid. Thanks Harmon. It will be nice to see his #3 jersey hanging in the Twins dugout the remainder of the season.

    • jdreyfuss | May 15, 2011 at 11:23 am |

      Note also, that even though the marketing department (rightfully) publicly advertised the tribute, the tribute wasn’t imposed by marketing or team management, but adopted by the players. An extra classy move by one of my team’s respected rivals.

    • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 11:25 am |

      I grew up with the Twins in the 1980s, after Killer had retired. But Killebrew came to a couple of events at my elementary school, and I met him a couple of times when my dad took me to media events, and I was in awe of the man. Just the kindest, most generous, gentlemanly, grandfatherly person you’d ever meet. At least that’s how he treated young children, and how a person treats children counts for a lot in my book.

      One of my most treasured memories of my father was one day in high school when dad called me down to the living room because ESPN Classic had just started showing Mantle vs. Killebrew on Home Run Derby. We watched together and dad told some stories about his father that I’d never heard before.

      • interlockingtc | May 15, 2011 at 1:34 pm |

        Harmon Killebrew was a hero, a great athlete, to be sure. But my lasting impression of him is like that of a good dad. A dad on the team. His character, his common-man physique, his availability, his patience, his genuine smile.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 2:33 pm |

          Virtually every current or former Twin (who wasn’t a playing contemporary of Killebrew’s) interviewed in the past couple days has mentioned the “father figure” aspect.

  • Steve | May 15, 2011 at 10:43 am |

    I dunno…as a graphic designer myself, I find it kind of weird that Tim O’Brien basically lifted the design and colors from the UniWatch site for his own site. I like UniWatch, I like Facebook, I like a whole lot of other sites as well, but my personal portfolio site doesn’t look like any of them. It reflects my personal design style, and it shows people I am able to create something on my own, with my own creative talents.

    And I echo a few other people on here…for the most part,the tweaks shown on this site are just throwbacks or retros. Just because you put them on a template and post them online doesn’t mean they are original. Save yourself the time and just say “I want the Blue Jays to wear the uniforms they wore in the early 90s.”

    It gets old, because every (I’m generalizing here) set of tweaks contains basically the same idea, so we’ve seen all of these tweaks in some form or another numerous times from numerous people over the last few years. You can then say “Well don’t look at them,” which is valid. But when a post mentions that someone is a graphic artist, since I’m in the field, it kind of forces me to look.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:49 am |

      I only do that on day’s I’m featured here on UW. And I still maintain my normal logo and look to a certain extent.

      http://img.photobuck...

      Although I do change the color scheme up quite frequently to keep things fresh.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 10:54 am |

      Also, many baseball teams have been playing for decades if not centuries. They’ve gone through a whole helluva lot of uni designs and concepts and without blowing up tradition and starting from scratch (which is much easier to do in the NBA and NFL) most concepts aren’t going to be earth shattering.

      None of these are rebrands, which I have specialized in (in the NBA, specifically) over the past few months. If you go through my site you will see this originality you feel is lacking.

      Thank you for the comment, though.

    • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 11:05 am |

      But…don’t you love the idea of making the Cubs’ chest logo the same size as the cap logo? And substituting baby blue for royal?

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:30 am |

      TimEOBrien.com is back to it’s normal, unique appearence

  • traxel | May 15, 2011 at 10:48 am |

    Major flaw Tim. I grew up rooting for teams I liked their uniforms, or more rather against teams I hated their getups. Now since you have created so many OUTSTANDING concepts, and displayed them so realistically, there would be entirely too many good unis vs. good unis that I wouldn’t be able to make a decision. Damn you Tim E.

  • Brian | May 15, 2011 at 11:03 am |

    Shocking, another rube who can’t stop living in the past with the Brewers ball-and-glove logo. Move on…

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:18 pm |

      No need for name calling, especially one that doesn’t make sense. I think people would describe me as anything but a rube.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:34 pm |

      Also,

      I’m wearing my Brewers MB logo today.

      Haters keep hatin’

  • Jim Vilk | May 15, 2011 at 11:03 am |

    “The game takes place at 1:35 pm eastern, and the good news is, it’s on TBS, so most of us should be able to watch it. If you can’t be by the tube, be sure to set your DVR’s now.”

    TBS? DVR? What is this language of which you speak?

    • traxel | May 15, 2011 at 11:12 am |

      You know, TBS. The channel that shows Bob Horner and the Braves, and all those old westerns. And I think it must have meant to say VCR instead of DVR.

      • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 11:31 am |

        I miss Skip Caray.

    • The Jeff | May 15, 2011 at 11:13 am |

      For you, he means the “Superstation” and VCR.

    • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 11:21 am |

      i was tempted to write

      “the good news is, it’s on TBS so everyone but Jim Vilk will be able to watch it.”

      woulda, coulda….definitely shoulda

  • Samuel | May 15, 2011 at 11:12 am |

    Both the Brewers and Pirates will be wearing their Armed Forces caps today

  • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 11:12 am |

    Personally (and I’m a white guy), you don’t name teams after things you don’t admire. It’s not the names, it’s the way those names are implemented.

    How would Catholics feel if some big foam-headed Cardinal, Saint, or Padre ran around baptizing fans with a big foam sceptre (or whatever that sprinkling thing is)? If they did that, I’d find it distasteful and think it would be best to stop.

    Point being, whether I am offended by Braves, Indians, Redskins, Ilini, or Seminoles, is really kind of irrelevant. It’s sort of presumptuous to be offended on someone else’s behalf and demand change based on your presumption of their being offended.

    A while back, radio station WTOP stopped referring to several sports teams because their names were offensive, including the hometown Redskins, but also any other team named after an Indian tribe, and also the Fighting Irish (I think there were a few others).

    Most of the Irish people I knew wanted to find station management and kick their asses. Go figure.

    • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 11:38 am |

      It’s sort of presumptuous to be offended on someone else’s behalf and demand change based on your presumption of their being offended.

      Oh boy — I hope I don’t have to spell out how wrong-headed this argument is. Only blacks can be offended by “nigger”? Only gays can be offended by Matthew Shepard’s murder?

      I’m not offended by the use of “Braves” and “Redskins” as a Native American; I’m offended (and embarrassed) as an AMERICAN, period.

      • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 12:01 pm |

        Except I’m not using the word you quoted. And there are studies that show that the majority of Native Americans aren’t offended by most of the names (Redskins being a separate category).

        The NCAA presumed that the Seminole tribe would be offended by the FSU name. Guess what? They aren’t. Does your offense at all the names that reference Native Americans override their not being offended?

        Paul, I’m not making the argument you seem to think I’m making. It’s more nuanced than that. I *would* be offended if a Padre was jumping around the stands baptizing people, and I think some of the things that are done in the names of the teams is offensive.

        Should we change the name Seminoles because of the assumption that Native American sports teams are, in general, offensive?

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 12:04 pm |

          See Scott Rogers’s argument below — as he says, it’s an issue of right or wrong (and whites using Native American imagery for commercial purposes is clearly wrong), not a matter of who is or isn’t offended.

        • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 12:28 pm |

          As long as the Seminoles have Great White Father to decide for them, everything is okay, then.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 12:35 pm |

          You can engage in all the sarcastic name-calling you like. But at the end of the day, you’re the one who’s trying to defend something that’s clearly indefensible. I don’t know why you (or anyone) would do that, but maybe that’s something you should ask yourself.

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 12:38 pm |

          Chris, I recognize you were being sarcastic, but interesting that you chose the Seminoles as the object of your sarcasm. Aren’t they (and Florida State’s relationship with the tribe) the prototype for “doing it right” in this context? They’re the premier example of a team that has received the official blessing of the tribe, no?

          Paul, what are your thoughts on this particular context? OK where the tribe has explicitly sanctioned? Does this get you from “wrong” to “right”? Or is this a different category, because it isn’t really “whites using Native American imagery for commercial purposes”?

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:40 pm |

          Paul, just a question, would you be okay if say FSU gave all profits from gear that says ‘Seminoles’ on it to some sort of NA not-for-profit or somehow to the ancestors of Seminoles or a scholarship or something?

          Because the crux of your argument seems to be profit – but is your definition of profit soley monetary or more?

          This will never happen, I know, but that’s what hypotheticals are for.

        • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 12:51 pm |

          Actually, I’m pointing out the Seminoles to show that (a) the Tribe has very specifically said they’re okay with it and (b) they are doing it right. IIRC, the Tribe actually gets some of the revenue from the merchandize, which helps them in ways that matter.

          And I think to presume otherwise on their behalf is paternalistic.

          To be clear, I think the marketing excess like Chief Knockahoma and Chief Wahoo are clearly wrong. I do, however, think it’s possible to disagree beyond that without being irredeemably racist.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 1:04 pm |

          It’s not just about the commercial/monetary aspect, although that certainly makes it worse.

          Look: If you steal a continent from someone thru a campaign of genocide, leaving their names and imagery to them, instead of exploiting it for your own purposes (commercial or otherwise), is pretty much the dictionary definition of “the least you can do.”

          Why is this so hard to grasp?

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 1:13 pm |

          Paul, I see where you’re coming from, but by not allowing for any deviation from an absolute rule of “NO NATIVE AMERICAN NICKNAMES OR IMAGERY,” I believe you are undermining your generally valid point. By saying that there is not one context, even with the explicit sanction of the subject tribe, wherein Native American names or imagery can be used, you are essentially saying that the tribe CANNOT choose to endorse and embrace the nickname and imagery. Isn’t that a different side of the same coin you’re criticizing: effectively dis-empowering the Seminole Nation?

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 2:26 pm |

          If a bunch of black folks told me it was okay to rename this site “Uni Watch 4 Niggaz,” that doesn’t mean I’d do it.

        • The Other Chris | May 15, 2011 at 2:28 pm |

          I appreciate and respect that, but you’re going beyond saying *I* wouldn’t to it, to saying that no one should do it.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 2:32 pm |

          I wouldn’t do it because it’s wrong; using Native American imagery is wrong too.

          If Seminole Nation wants to market themselves, let them do it themselves. And let them reap the benefits, instead of FSU (or Dan Snyder, or Ted Turner, or whomever).

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 2:33 pm |

          (INADVERTENTLY POSTED BELOW) C’mon, Paul. Are you seriously equating the recognized government of a sovereign nation with “a bunch of folks”? And, further, are you really equating the proper name of said nation with a slang slur?

          I just can’t get behind you on this one. Still respect your thoughts, and I’m with you on a lot of your points on this topic, but I find that there are very few incontrovertible, no-room-for-discussion absolutes. I just don’t think the “NO NATIVE AMERICAN NAMES OR IMAGERY” rules is one of them.

          Think we’ve found your moral “purple.”

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm |

          Paul said:
          If Seminole Nation wants to market themselves, let them do it themselves. And let them reap the benefits, instead of FSU (or Dan Snyder, or Ted Turner, or whomever).

          And there’s the rub. There is no real distinction between the Seminole Nation marketing itself and it explicitly sanctioning a university that is an arm of the state government of Florida from doing so.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 2:38 pm |

          I ask again: Why would you (or anyone) try so desperately to defend something that is clearly indefensible? What privilege are you enjoying that is so threatened by this argument? Why is it so hard to acknowledge that certain things — like, say, the theft of a continent via a genocidal campaign of ethnic cleansing — render certain topics off-limits?

          If there was a team called the Slaves, there’d be no need to have this discussion — it’d be obvious. The only reason THIS one isn’t obvious (to some of you) is that the team names have existed for decades and you’ve gotten used to them. But they’re every bit as inappropriate as Slaves.

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 2:54 pm |

          PLEASE EXCUSE THE AWKWARD REPLY FORMAT. DON’T KNOW HOW TO ITALICIZE. I’LL JUST ADDRESS YOUR POINTS ONE AT A TIME.
          I ask again: Why would you (or anyone) try so desperately to defend something that is clearly indefensible?

          Labeling something “clearly indefensible” does not make it so. IMHO, absolutism from the left is as problematic as absolutism from the right.

          What privilege are you enjoying that is so threatened by this argument? Why is it so hard to acknowledge that certain things — like, say, the theft of a continent via a genocidal campaign of ethnic cleansing — render certain topics off-limits?

          Paul, I (of all people in this discussion) are claiming no such privilege. What I am asserting, in one discrete context, is that a sovereign nation has the right to sanction, endorse, profit from and otherwise bless the nickname of the state university that today (for better or worse) exists in its historic homeland.

          If there was a team called the Slaves, there’d be no need to have this discussion — it’d be obvious. The only reason THIS one isn’t obvious (to some of you) is that the team names have existed for decades and you’ve gotten used to them. But they’re every bit as inappropriate as Slaves.

          Allow me to re-emphasize, from the get-go, I have been defending ONLY the Florida State Seminoles (and other, similarly sanctioned names, to the extent they exist). I have not once tried to defend the Indians, Braves, Redskins, etc. As I noted earlier, to try to use SLAVES as an example to make your point is as inapplicable as others using Fighting Irish to make the opposite point. Why? Because the Florida State Seminoles reflect the sovereign will of the Seminole Nation. Slaves, Redskins, Braves, Indians do not.

          Paul, for the record, I have no hostility toward you on this point; I don’t agree with you on the ‘Noles, but I appreciate the debate.

        • Paul Lukas | May 15, 2011 at 2:55 pm |

          And now I have to go to a class, so I can’t debate this any longer, which is no doubt a great relief to everyone.

        • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 3:07 pm |

          I’ll retract my “absolutism from the left and right” comment. Not because it isn’t true, but because I don’t know that it’s accurate to say Paul’s position has a distinct left/right component to it.

        • BoH | May 15, 2011 at 8:31 pm |

          Couple points:

          1) While certainly morally wrong, to call the Indian/European relationship a concerted campaign of genocide is an oversimplification of American History. Don’t confuse the (presumed) result with the (presumed) intent. Not pretty, not right, but not genocide either.

          2) Why is this about money? Why the financial aspect? If I had a team called the Redskins, and yet got no financial gain would it be okay? I think you and I would agree it would not. Furthermore, to suggest that there’s an exploitation angle here is silly: The vast majority of fans do not choose the team they support (financially or otherwise) based on the team mascot.

          3) This seems to hinge on perceived exploitation, somehow. The team/mascot/city/fan/mascot’s race relationship is not necessarily zero sum, and despite your suggestion earlier, not everyone takes for granted that sins are cultural and carry on beyond the lifetimes of the transgressor. Ignoring the racial angle for a sec, are the Vikings exploiting the vikings? Or is it only exploitation when there are two racial groups with historical grudges involved?

          As Sowell said “What can any society hope to gain by having some babies born into the world with a priori grievances against other babies born into that same society on the same day?”

          Paul, you have a God given right to be as offended as you want to be, or feel as guilty as you like, merely by virtue of your national origin; those who disagree are not necessarily racists.

    • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 11:54 am |

      The offensiveness of something does not depend on whether one is the target of the offense. I mean, a decade ago, I lived in an apartment building with a Russian handyman who used to say the most offensive anti-Semitic trash. (Fortunately, his English was as bad as my Russian, so most of the time I had no idea what he was saying!) Anyway, I did not respond to his anti-Semitic comments by concluding that, because I am not a Jew, I had no right to decide whether they were offensive or not. Bigotry against anyone is offensive to everyone, or at least, it is offensive to every decent person.

      On the other hand, no one has a right not to be offended. Whether a thing is merely offensive or not has no moral weight here. Rather, what matters is the right or wrong of it. This is a question of values (is it moral?), not a question of manners (does it cause offense?).

  • flying burrito | May 15, 2011 at 11:15 am |

    Love the new template. However, it only makes me more frustrated that I don’t have photoshop. Is there a good, free alternative editor? I don’t want my first attempts to be ruined by MS paint.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:29 am |

      People use GIMP but i never have…

  • Jim Vilk | May 15, 2011 at 11:18 am |

    VERY good stuff today, Tim!
    Glad you didn’t listen to Phil and included the Cubs alt road uni. Always loved that look. Every time I see it I remember the game I went to at Three Rivers where Barry Foote fouled off eight straight pitches before…well, I forget how the at-bat ended, but whatever.

    Also love the Reds alt, along with just about everything else.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 11:28 am |

      Thanks Jimmer!

  • Jim Vilk | May 15, 2011 at 11:36 am |

    Ricko, your Benchies reminded me why I got out of softball. I was playing on my brother’s team one night, and my depth perception was off even more than usual. One fly ball I started yelling, “I got it, I got it, I…YOU got it!” and ducked. Big bro was backing me up, but it was too late for him to catch the ball.

    Only time a fly ball hit me was during a day game, when I tried looking through the webbing of my glove to block out the sun. Lost the ball at the last second and it smacked me on the shoulder.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 12:08 pm |

      My personal worst was gliding in under an easy fly ball along the LF foul line. I was facing the sun, but could see it all then way. Then, just as I raised my glove a gust of wind caught the visor of my hat and blew it off.

      Was like a flashbulb going off in my face. The ball clanked off my glove. Felt like a total dork.

  • Dan in Houston | May 15, 2011 at 11:39 am |

    Loved Tim’s tweaks on the Astros (though I’d imagine the cap logos would be in proportion on the real thing). Let’s hope the new owners on that tequila sunrise horizon feel the need to dispense with the red.

    • The Red Dog | May 15, 2011 at 2:28 pm |

      It seems like every single tweak for the Astros puts us back in navy and orange – as it should be!

      I sure wish the team would realize this.

  • Jim Vilk | May 15, 2011 at 11:49 am |

    I love this A’s tweak from Ron.

    • Ron Rowland | May 19, 2011 at 9:53 am |

      Awesome. Thanks, Jim.

  • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 12:00 pm |

    With all of this discussion about naming teams after Native Americans, and the resultant back and forth about victors and vanquished, oppressors and oppressed, I thought I’d throw this one out there: Am I the only one who thinks it rather amazing that there are any teams known as the Trojans? I mean, how odd is it that a team be named in honor of a civilization destroyed after being hoodwinked by the most famous ruse in the history of man? Particularly ironic that the Trojans represent an institution of higher learning…

    • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 12:02 pm |

      i thought they represented USC

      • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 12:08 pm |

        Touche!

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:07 pm |

      First, the story of the Trojans is one of fierce competitors. Granted they were the losers, but the Greeks viewed the Trojans as equals in most ways and honored them with much respect. Many Greek opponent were vilified as barbarians, aliens and animals. Few were given the respect the Trojans were given.

      The Trojan war lasted years and years (in myth) and has persisted as a tale of two rivals that both had legendary warriors and heroes, but all wars must have losers and all epics must have tragedy. Part of the allure of Troy, is that because they were destroyed, their image as a pure, glorious and honorable people was never tainted, unlike the Greek who we know so much about.

      And Phil, best zing of the day BY FAR!

      • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 12:10 pm |

        I like your justification, Tim. I concur, and I certainly wouldn’t argue that the nickname Trojans should go. Have just always thought it was kind of ironic that most people who have heard of Troy know one thing about it. And that thing ain’t a positive one!

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:15 pm |

          Yeah, but Classics used to be a staple of 19th and 20th century higher education. The people who named these teams Trojans were Hellenophiles – like me (Classics minor), although I prefer the Romans – and so were the people who attended their institutions.

          just look at the influence of the greeks on architecture, literature, etc.

  • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:01 pm |

    I want this settled once and for all:

    http://www.uniwatchb...

  • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:02 pm |

    shit wrong link.

    I want THIS settled once and for all:

    @danieltosh Settle a debate for me: Is it Racist – Chief Wahoo http://www.moonbatte...

  • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 12:46 pm |

    Have to say, though, despite it all, it’s kind of an isn’t-America-great moment to realize that although we may have a few sports teams that persist in using bigoted iconography, American sports culture is not itself infested with very much active bigotry. We don’t have, for example, Catholic-versus-Protestant team rivalries that produce mob violence. We don’t, by and large, have “white” teams and “black” teams. The fans of teams that are rivals to the Redskins and Indians don’t sing songs about slaughtering the savages; they don’t throw dirty blankets down onto the field to symbolize the genocide against the natives. Exact analogues to all of these things do occur among sports fans in other countries.

    So, you know, even if one is troubled by Chief Wahoo or the Redskins, it could be a heck of a lot worse!

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 12:48 pm |

      Progress. Not there yet but we’re working on it.

      Good point to remember before the name-calling starts.

    • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 12:51 pm |

      Canada’s pretty great, too, by this standard. Didn’t mean to discriminate against the True North Strong and Free.

      Say, speaking of design, Indians, and Canada …

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 12:56 pm |

      Hey, Scott (and others who pay attention to the Twins), MLB Network ranks the Twins-Braves 1991 W-S Game Seven as the 2nd greatest game in MLB history. On right now. John Smoltz and Jack Morris are the in-studio guests.

      Hope no one calls me a “homer,” but it was a helluva game, that’s for sure (no matter which team ended up winning it).

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 12:59 pm |

        More accurately, I guess the series is the greatest games in the past 50 years.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 1:09 pm |

        Oooo, good trivia question from that show.

        In the past 50 years, only three pitchers who started a WS game have gone into the 10th inning.

        Jack Morris, obviously, is one.

        The others were pretty good pitchers, too.

      • besty | May 15, 2011 at 1:22 pm |

        What game could possibly be ranked ahead of that one? For dramatic ending only game 7 of 1960 compares. Please not the “shot heard round the world” game which only put the team into the series and did not win it.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 1:25 pm |

          Been thinking about that myself.
          1960 only one that comes to mind.

          Want a hint on those other two pitchers?
          One was nasty, the other was terrific.

        • -DW | May 15, 2011 at 11:18 pm |

          How about Game 7 of the 1997 WS between the Florida Marlins-Cleveland Indians?

          Game 7 went to 2 outs in the bottom of the 11th inning and was won on Renteria’s single scoring Counsell from 3rd.

          I know it wasn’t this blog’s favorite teams (Yankees, Red Sox, Twins, Brewers or Mets), but is was an exciting Game 7.

      • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 5:21 pm |

        I think it’s possible to establish some objective standards for the “greatness” of a World Series, if not for particular games. I propose these criteria:

        – Number of games. The more the better. Any five-game series is better than any sweep, any six-gamer is better than any five-gamer, any series that goes seven is better than any that goes only six.

        – Closeness of the games played. The more games decided by one run, the better.

        – End-of-game drama. The more games decided in the last inning, or by the last at-bat, the better.

        – Extra innings. The more games decided in extra innings, the better.

        – Bonus for extraordinary performances. Complete games, shutouts, no-hitters, triple-plays, multi-homer games, triples, memorable defense etc.

        If one accepts those criteria, 1924, 1991, and 2001 stand far and away ahead of all other World Series. In terms of the closeness/competitiveness criteria, 1991 is the clear winner. But both 1924 and 2001 featured standout individual performances that at least equal, if not exceed, even Jack Morris’s extraordinary 10-inning game.

  • jim greenfield | May 15, 2011 at 1:28 pm |

    I think Tim and Phil’s designs are terrific! For example all the Cubs really need was to shrink the chest logo as they did. Great job! I wish they’d appoint you MLB head designers.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 1:31 pm |

      Thanks Jim. If I had my way, I’d shrink everything about the Cubs – INTO NONEXISTENCE! (Southsider)

    • jim greenfield | May 15, 2011 at 1:47 pm |

      P.S. Just saw the Reds and White Sox home unis-TERRIFIC!
      Classic. Love all the striped socks (I don’t care if they’re stirrups or socks, just bring them back). One crtisism. Some of the lettering could be a little taller.

      • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 1:51 pm |

        Which?

        • jim greenfield | May 15, 2011 at 1:59 pm |

          The Brewers home for example. Both lettering and number seem a little small. I wouldn’t want to go too far the other way but just a tad.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 2:01 pm |

          Yeah, later on I noticed some of my numbers got a bit smallish (brewers, twins) but the ‘BREWERS’ is the same proportions as they were on the original unis.

        • jim greenfield | May 15, 2011 at 2:08 pm |

          OK then. The thing bugging me lately (among others) is the too highly posisioned lettering, like the Dodgers.

  • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 1:40 pm |

    No zippers and no maroon on the Phils’ 74 throwbacks.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 1:54 pm |

      Phillies never worn maroon in that era.
      Wasn’t that dark.
      Was more burgundy. Considerably lighter than maroon
      (REF: Mississippi State and Texas A&M).

      But it wasn’t as red as what they’re wearing today, either, that’s for sure. At least not always.

      Honestly, I’ve always thought the Phillies unis of the powder blue road era changed some over the years. Started a bit more red than the burgundy they were wearing by the time they were getting to the W-S.

      • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 2:22 pm |

        I think they actually stayed red from 1970-72. I’ll take your word on the burgundy. By 1989 it seemed pretty dark to me.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 2:36 pm |

          Night games of that era could fool you, especially with burgundy. It got darker.
          And since most of the country saw them in W-S, it stands to reason that the perception of maroon is widespread.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 2:40 pm |

          Yes, they were definitely red as long as they were wearing gray roads, which included their first doubleknits in ’71. I’m just not positive the burgundy arrived precisely with the powder blue.

        • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 3:09 pm |

          It didn’t. I’ve seen video evidence (the Fergie Jenkins documentary; Burt Hooten no-hitter) they wore bright red w/ powder doubleknits early in ’72. Colorwise, they seemed indistinguishable from the Chisox that year.

        • jecaec | May 15, 2011 at 5:02 pm |

          I recall distinctly that the Phils initially went darker (maroon?, I’m not sure) during the 1976 playoffs to distiguish themselves from the Reds.

        • -DW | May 15, 2011 at 11:29 pm |

          Henderson’s guide says:

          “The Phillies had used a scarlet red for their lettering and trim since 1950. This same red was carried over to the new uniform design in 1970, but the new sleeve and side trim was maroon. The red lettering changed to maroon by 1975 and the pinstripes changed from red to maroon in 1988.”

    • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 2:03 pm |

      Continuing OCD checklist:

      -Phils’ NOBs radially arched instead of vertically. Not sure they even used NOBs in 74; they didn’t on the home pins.

      -White outline on the racing stripes too wide.

      -‘P’ logo not right…didn’t it form a little baseball in the opening of the P? And the cap logo is too thick.

      -Braves’ numbers too low, like someone assumed they’d want NOBs. That seems standard now for all NNOB throwbacks.

      -Braves’ hats look perfect. Blue brims on hats, white brims on helmets. I want the name of whoever screwed up and got something right.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 2:29 pm |

        “Braves’ numbers too low, like someone assumed they’d want NOBs. That seems standard now for all NNOB throwbacks.”

        One of my pet peeves, even on non-throwback nameless jerseys in all sports. Jeez, have the knowledge of uni history to put the numbers in the pre-NOB position.

        Braves today are proving that in a time of shoe-length pants you can indeed add color to a white (or, I suppose, gray) uni without going to a full-on dark jersey or a latter day “vest” that shows more undersleeve.

        • pushbutton | May 15, 2011 at 3:17 pm |

          Contrasting sleeves. Something so simple. But headspoons are what’s sellin’ in the gift shop.

          “MLB: Thinking Inside The Box”

      • Simply Moono | May 15, 2011 at 5:38 pm |

        “I want the name of whoever screwed up and got something right.”

        Majestic. #ThatIsAll.

      • BurghFan | May 15, 2011 at 6:28 pm |

        The Phils’ jersey logo had to lose the “seams” so it didn’t look like a ball. (There’s actually a rule prohibiting it.)

    • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 8:34 pm |

      didn’t see the game (dammit) but did look at game stills

      this looks pretty burgundy, no? sleeves are definitely red, but the caps and striping look burgundy

  • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 1:43 pm |

    re: Twins in creams at home for balance of season as tribute to Killebrew.

    From the team’s website…
    http://minnesota.twi...

    Don’t know if they need MLB’s consent, but if they do, it appears they’re operating under the “if they don’t like, tough” philosophy.

    Good for them.

  • David | May 15, 2011 at 1:50 pm |

    I like a lot of the tweaks, and I like the idea of removing the drop shadow from the Reds’ uniforms but you have to leave the wishbone “C” with reds logo. The home uniform that was made up looks like the knockoffs they sell at local flea markets, no thanks.

    I’m also not a fan of red jerseys or red pants. Just because your have a color for a team name doesn’t mean you have to blanket yourself in it.

    • -DW | May 15, 2011 at 3:02 pm |

      I agree. I don’t care for the “Reds” across the front of the jersey and BP jersey. You gotta have the wishbone-C on at least the home jersey.

      The Yankees “NY”, the Tigers “D”, the Cubs “C-ubs”, and the Reds wishbone-C-Reds shouldn’t be messed with.

  • EricB in KC | May 15, 2011 at 1:51 pm |

    Awesome vintage letter sweater found. Too expensive and much to small for me but still very cool.

    http://www.rubylane....

  • moose | May 15, 2011 at 2:24 pm |

    tim E~
    great job on that template. but i do have one question, or maybe it is a comment. you spent all that time editing this and that, but you didn’t make the easiest edit before you, you left the swoosh on the mit? you couldn’t fill that in black? what the heck is wrong with you? you made a template that is a free add essentially for nike. all of you designs, and you had some good ideas have the nike swoosh. you’re a twisted lil dude.

    ricko~
    that benchies is so youppi.

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 2:27 pm |

      I can’t wait ’til you look at his cleats…

      • moose | May 15, 2011 at 4:37 pm |

        i would take them off those too, your template shouldn’t be a billboard, but it is your template, and at least they make sense on the feet, the glove does not. why should every tweak you make be an advert for the swoosh? they paying you?

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 4:48 pm |

          The swoosh was on his shoes and mit, I figured they weern’t gunna change so i put them as a part of the background. It wasn’t intentional, it was just one less thing to do…

        • moose | May 15, 2011 at 5:10 pm |

          trust me i am not saying you did a bad job, the template is awesome. i was just saying it is a shame to give nike any kind of credit for your hard work. i anything tim E o’b should be in place of the swoosh on the mit.

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 7:12 pm |

          What the heck, leave ’em on the shoes.
          There’s gonna be some kind of logomark (or more) on everyone’s shoes so it just helps envision how the unis would look.

          Not a lot of solid black shoes in MLB anymore. Some, sure, but hardly common.

        • moose | May 15, 2011 at 9:00 pm |

          he could give it some sort of random squiggle or the old spot built logo too. i am not sure that they would, but i just don’t think nike should benefit from tim’s stuff in any way.

        • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 9:10 pm |

          i agree with taking it off the glove, but the shoes are fine

          really…nike IS first and foremost (or at least they were) a shoemaker…not unis, not performance wear, not lifestyle gear…but honest to god, actual shoes

          and if you’re gonna take the swoosh of the cleats, then you gaddam well better take that majestic shit off the sleeve

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 9:40 pm |

          I’ve been doing some editing and reorganizing of my template and the swoosh on the glove is gone. The shoe swooshes are here to stay and Majestic sponsors me so that’s not goin’ anywhere…

          …in fact, I might make it bigger.

        • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 9:46 pm |
  • CWac19 | May 15, 2011 at 2:32 pm |

    C’mon, Paul. Are you seriously equating the recognized government of a sovereign nation with “a bunch of folks”? And, further, are you really equating the proper name of said nation with a slang slur?

    I just can’t get behind you on this one. Still respect your thoughts, and I’m with you on a lot of your points on this topic, but I find that there are very few incontrovertible, no-room-for-discussion absolutes. I just don’t think the “NO NATIVE AMERICAN NAMES OR IMAGERY” rules is one of them.

    Think we’ve found your moral “purple.”

    • Tim E. O'B | May 15, 2011 at 2:34 pm |

      “Think we’ve found your moral “purple.””

      HA!

  • StLMarty | May 15, 2011 at 2:56 pm |

    My fellow Americans… keep your heads in the sand. Someday it will all go away. The broken promises, genocide, and slavery that made our nation so great? Someday, the effects will all go away. Magically. All we have to do is ignore it. It wasn’t us, it was them.

  • adam | May 15, 2011 at 2:57 pm |

    “You can engage in all the sarcastic name-calling you like. But at the end of the day, you’re the one who’s trying to defend something that’s clearly indefensible. I don’t know why you (or anyone) would do that, but maybe that’s something you should ask yourself.”

    I think the names are clearly racist, but Paul, I’m surprised you don’t understand why the other side of the argument exists. Sports is about tradition. Looking at a uniform can make you feel at home and young and nostalgic. You can smell your dead father’s old spice.

    certain aspects of every sport are vestigial relics, (stirrups, i’m looking at you) but they make us feel good.

    Watching the Washington L’Enfantes (or whatever) Wouldn’t give you the same warm feeling.

    I’m not advocating, nor opposing this position. Just making note of the desire for tradition in life’s perpetuating rituals, among which the constancy of a sports season, for some, ranks paramount.

    Shouldn’t there be a call to rename the NAACP?

  • traxel | May 15, 2011 at 3:33 pm |

    You guys are KILLING ME today! And not in a funny way. See you tomorrow. Actually I’ll be on a golf trip. See you later in the week.

    • StLMarty | May 15, 2011 at 3:45 pm |

      Golf courses have plenty of sand.

      • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 10:54 pm |

        none big enough for ben’s head tho

  • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 3:34 pm |

    CLEVELAND KLINGERS!
    http://www.flickr.co...

    Hey, he was from Ohio.

    • StLMarty | May 15, 2011 at 3:43 pm |

      But he was from Toledo. Remember? He always wore the Mud Hens cap and jersey.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 6:23 pm |

        Indeed. Think of it as being geographically inclusionary.

  • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 3:38 pm |

    Just out of curiosity, is there a difference between “racial” and “racist”?

    Or are they the same thing now?

    • StLMarty | May 15, 2011 at 3:44 pm |

      They are spelled differently.

    • David | May 15, 2011 at 4:00 pm |

      Still different, simply because they cannot be interchanged. “Racial” doesn’t always have to be racist, People can have racial “differences” which isn’t racist. However, if you try to stereotype that group based on racial differences it becomes racist…

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 4:06 pm |

        So there’s a clear difference, then.

        If someone notes that, say, statistics show divorce is more prevalent among “Ethnics” (supply any group of your choosing) is that a racial observation or a racist observation?

        Obviously, depends on the circumstances.

        Or does it? Seems to me a person can get called a racist for such a remark no matter how it’s presented.

    • RS Rogers | May 15, 2011 at 5:11 pm |

      Since the concept of “race” among the human species is a purely social invention with no basis in biological reality, all instances of racial thinking are inherently racist. If one identifies any persons as members of any race, then one is, at least in that instance, a racist.

      Which makes basically all of us in America racists, though I see hopeful signs that racial thinking is beginning to fade away among the very youngest cohort of American adults. All to the good.

      The useful line is not between people who have fictional racial definitions stamped into their brain by a lifetime of acculturation but who aren’t “really” racists and those who are “really” racists. The useful line is between having a worldview with some degree of racism in it and taking actions based on racism. Which is to say, the useful difference is between racism and bigotry. It’s OK to notice an interracial couple and think to oneself, “Hey, there’s an interracial couple.” It’s not OK to notice an interracial couple and treat them differently than one would treat a non-interracial couple in the same circumstances. The former is racism; the latter is bigotry.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 5:55 pm |

        That’s what I was thinking. That any thought regarding race is now seen as inherently racist.

        So if a woman from work shows up at a company party with a guy who’s African-American and I notice it, that would be patently different from her showing up with a redheaded guy and me noting the color of his hair.

        Recognizing someone’s physical chaacteristics is okay, unless one of those physical characteristics I note is their race, in which case I’d be a racist to notice it.

        Okay, got it.

        And when the police offer the description of a suspect in a crime, and list the suspect’s ethnic background (whatever it might be) that, too, is racist. Not merely a racial observation or identification, but a racist act.

        Got that, too.

        Again. Any mention, or thought, of race is racist. Basically, the term “racial” essentially no longer exists.

        Now, does that also mean it’s all “racism”? Cuz isn’t that what racists practice, racism?

        • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 6:03 pm |

          And I’m not ebating with you, Scott, not in any way.

          I’m really just trying to see if those two words truly have merged in usage.

          Why? Because I did a “Benchies” where I drew Ozzie with some racial characteristics (so readers would get that he’s an African American) and he made a comment about an infamous racial situation that once existed at The Masters…and someone said he strip was “about as racist as you can get.”

          To me, the content was racial, yes, but hardly racist. “Racist” implies “racism”. The point of the strip was to ridicule racism, which deserves all the jibes we can throw at it. But how do we do that without some racial content?

  • benjarvi | May 15, 2011 at 6:13 pm |

    Paul, I’m a longtime reader and a first-time commenter. As a lifelong Cleveland Indians fan, I have to say that hearing your side of the argument has changed my opinion on the controversy surrounding the name. I’ve not worn a Chief Wahoo cap in years (I’m delighted that the organization seems to be phasing it out and replacing it with the block C), but I’ve never seen why the team shouldn’t be called the Indians. Now, I realize that the whole business is just stupid and offensive.

    That being said, I have two points.

    1) As a fan of soccer, it’s interesting to note that European football has its own version of this problem. Tottenham Hotspur fans have used the word “yid” (an anti-semitic slur) to describe themselves, asserting that they are reclaiming the word to assert jewish pride. The Guardian ran an excellent piece on it (http://www.guardian....). Much like the case of the Cleveland Indians, this is misguided at best or racist at worst because that term is not theirs to reclaim, and the jewish culture (because the vast majority of fans are not jewish) is not theirs to re-appropriate.

    2) Let’s be clear. The real reason people feel reluctant to acknowledge the offensiveness of Native American team names is because of their attachment to that team. To that end, I would argue that a team is much more than its name and logos, and can easily transcend them if its fan base so chooses. People object to changing these logos because they feel accused of being racists themselves. I think this is patently untrue; just because I root for a team that happens to be called the Indians doesn’t mean I think any less of native americans. Moreover I’m proud that my team integrated the American League (Larry Doby) and was the first in all of baseball to have an African American manager (Frank Robinson). I guess what I’m saying is that while the logos and names themselves can be easy calls, the implications behind the issue are stickier. What do you think, Paul? If the Indians logo and name is racist, what does that make all of the Cleveland fans who have loved the team over the years?

    • benjarvi | May 15, 2011 at 6:17 pm |

      Oh, and as to what the Indians should be renamed, I genuinely think they should go back to being called the Naps, after Napoleon Lajoie. If the idiots wouldn’t have traded him to the Phillies, we might not be having this argument in the first place.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 6:19 pm |

      “Moreover I’m proud that my team integrated the American League (Larry Doby) and was the first in all of baseball to have an African American manager (Frank Robinson).”

      Didn’t the Indians take their name in the first place because they had the only Native American player in the league? Or is that just one of those legends that lives to help justify the nickname?

      (And I’m NOT saying it would be a reason to keep the nickname, just checking on the tale told).

      • benjarvi | May 15, 2011 at 7:08 pm |

        Yes. After Lajoie left, they were named after Louis Sockalexis, who played for the old National League Cleveland Spiders.

  • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 7:03 pm |

    Oh, good, there’s a Red Sox-Yankees game on tonight.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 7:04 pm |

      Only LAW & ORDER is on more often.

      • Jim Vilk | May 15, 2011 at 7:54 pm |

        Only the nightly news is on more often.

        • Oakville Celery Root (alias Endive) | May 15, 2011 at 10:47 pm |

          Well, the first game of conference finals between the Heat/Bulls is wrapped up, so to is the Sharks and Canucks, but if you want high octane sports entertainment for I would say at least another hour, the Red Sox/Yankees is grinding along in the 7th. Dan Shulman – I don’t know how you avoid sounding a bit bored.

    • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 7:05 pm |

      And maybe HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER.

      • StLMarty | May 15, 2011 at 11:56 pm |

        Don’t forget Charlie Sheen and Ducky.

    • Oakville Celery Root (alias Endive) | May 15, 2011 at 7:21 pm |

      Not only are they on all the time, but their games are often really long and tedious.

      Bautista 3HR’s – becoming one of the most exciting players, and he still almost completely unknown, Twinkie fans wanted him to hit a 4th today.

      • Ricko | May 15, 2011 at 7:28 pm |

        Only three right-handed hitters have homered to right at Target Field.
        He’s all three of them.
        One last year.
        One yesterday.
        One today.

        • Oakville Celery Root (alias Endive) | May 15, 2011 at 7:53 pm |

          Yeah and I’m pretty sure of the 54 HR’s he hit last year, only one was to Right-field, the one at Target. The only ones he hit this year to the right-fied have been this weekend.

          Not only is he an exciting player, the type who you delay doing something, so you can watch his at bat, he’s a leader in the club house. He’s seems to have helped Escobar the short-stop. The Jays want to become a predominantly Latin team – and they see him obviously a cornerstone. Why a Latin team? The thinking is, they stand a better chance at retaining Latin players as opposed to American – although if Morneau or a Votto was to come ever available (highly unlikely)

          Those Twins unis do look sharp – sad to see them play so poortly

  • LI Phil | May 15, 2011 at 8:04 pm |

    man…just got back from a long day, seeing pop in the hospital…traffic was a bear, im tired and i have a headache…

    i just want to kick back and watch some baseball, since i missed every game today, including the braves/phillies

    who’s playing tonight?

    • Oakville Celery Root (alias Endive) | May 15, 2011 at 9:19 pm |

      May I have a “Now for something completely different” suggestion

      Sharks vs Canucks.

      Sorry for the tough day.