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Next year marks the Texas Rangers’ 40th anniversary, and the timing couldn’t be better. If they had hit a significant birthday back in, say, 2007, we all would’ve said, “Have they really been around that long? How have they managed to make so little impact on the field or in the public mind?” But at present they’re the two-time defending American League champs, so the throwback retrospective that they announced yesterday feels earned and appropriate.
A few notes:
• The Rangers’ inaugural 1972 home whites featured one the oddest-looking details in MLB uni history: that little ranger’s badge at the base of the R. It’ll be kinda fun seeing that again. (And remember, the R and the S that bookend the chest insignia stand for then-owner Robert Short, as I confirmed in this ESPN column a few months ago.)
• The arching of the letters on the powder blue throwback looks seriously off. Let’s hope they get that fixed. (And for those who have issues with the Rangers wearing powder blue at home, they have a history of doing that, as we determined a year and a half ago.)
• Interestingly, two different versions of the anniversary logo are floating around (note the differences in the “Anniversary” script; click for larger view):
The one on the left was tweeted from the unveiling event by ESPN Dallas columnist Richard Durrett, so it must have been on display somewhere in the room. But the one on the right, which I strongly prefer, is the one they displayed as a patch. Hope that’s the one they stick with. Either way, too bad Rick Perry pushed through that law that says Texas gets to secede unless every new uni element features the state flag. The patch design would be way less cluttered without it.
Oh, and speaking of MLB: New road uniforms on the way for the Rockies, but you didn’t hear it from me. (Instead, you heard it from this guy.)
Because you can’t spell “Santa” without “Satan”: The clock is counting down to the blessed day when Jesus Claus will bring menorahs to all the little Kwanzaaites, or however that works, which means I’ll finally be able to stop reminding you about the following points:
• If you want to buy someone a Uni Watch membership as a gift, full details on how to do that are available here.
• From now through the end of the year, if you order two sheets of stickers based on your membership card design (that costs $26), you’ll also get a free sheet of Uni Watch logo stickers (a mix of all three colors). Instrux for ordering stickers can be found here.
• Speaking of the circular Uni Watch logo stickers, my recent offer still stands: If you want three of these stickers (one of each color), send a self-addressed stamped envelope to Paul Lukas, 671 DeGraw St., Brooklyn, NY 11217. If you want to enclose a coupla bucks or a barter offering, that’d be nice, although it isn’t required.
• T-shirts, beverage coasters, coffee mugs, and the like are available at the Uni Watch shop on Zazzle.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Say whatever you like about Ron Artest, but this looks pretty fucking cool. … Here’s a bunch more of those NFL toothbrushes (from Max Weintraub). … Martin Biron’s mask for the Winter Classic isn’t very throwback-y. Eh, whatever, he probably won’t get in the game anyway. … Brad Wasserman was at a recent Florida Panthers game and saw a display of what appears to be some original design sketches for the team’s logo. … Bowling and barbecue: two great tastes that taste great together (big thanks to Ben Marciniak). … Got an idea for a good sock design? Send it to these guys. If they like it, they’ll put it into production and give you $200 to boot (thanks, Kirsten). … Great job by Curtis Worrell of Helmet Hut, who’s come up with an old Jim Brown helmet with a great story behind it. … Ed Dittberner notes that several CMU basketball players have been wearing shin padding. … While looking for those CMU pics, I noticed that Tre’Von Willis of UNLV wears blacks tights. … Yesterday I asked about the story of Penn State’s original colors being black and pink. Quite a few readers confirmed that the story is true, but Paul Bielewicz took things a step further with this story: “That story was recently corroborated for me by a current co-worker who was a recent Penn State football player (2008-2010). In fact, he said Nike had designed prototype Pro Combat unis in black and pink and shown them to the team. At some point, somebody poo-pooed them before they made it to the field — I don’t remember if he said it was the players, or Paterno, etc.” … Gee, ya think West High School in Arizona had big enough lettering on its 1955 baseball jeseys? (From Kenn Tomasch.) … Grayson Shelton would like to see Arkansas-Little Rock revive its long-dormant football program and has come up with some design concepts for what the team might look like. “Any historical photos on the defunct UALR program would be interesting too,” he says. “I know they won the Junior Rose Bowl in 1949 and played in the Junior Sugar Bowl in 1948 when they were Little Rock Junior College, but I haven’t found many pictures.” … Here’s another team-themed Xmas tree, this time from Brian Anderson, who’s obviously a Packer backer. … New rugby kit for the Vodacom Bulls. “Sort of looks like an old, static-y TV,” says Caleb Borchers. … The Lake Erie Monsters will wear Cleveland Crusaders jerseys tomorrow (from Tom Pachuta). … More news regarding Minnesota’s new football uniforms: They plan to reveal the new design one annoyingly small piece at a time, beginning with a partial view of what appears to be a matte maroon helmet (from Jeremy Formo). … “Walmart stores here in Arkansas are selling
Cotton Telecommunications Bowl tees that feature the Razorbacks’ Riddell Speed helmet and the hammer merit stickers,” says Stacy Jones. “Never seen something like that on a tee at Walmart before.” Me neither, but then I’ve never shopped at a Walmart before. … Here’s a weird one: The top-right spoke in Brad Marchand’s jersey crest appeared to be white instead of yellow last night (screen shot by Rich Rutherford).