• The Mets honored Gary Garter by wearing Carter BP jerseys during pregame warm-ups, hanging a Carter jersey in the dugout, and putting a giant version of the Carter memorial sleeve patch on the outfield wall. They did not retire his number, however, as had been rumored in some circles.
• The Mets also had Carter’s widow and three children throw out the first pitch — or, rather, four simultaneous first pitches. Four of Carter’s former teammates caught the pitches: Ron Darling, Keith Hernandez, Darryl Strawberry, and Mookie Wilson. Here’s the weird thing: Straw and Mex are left-handed, but they were wearing right-handed gloves to catch the first pitches.
• Okay, sorry about all the Mets-centricity. Moving on to other teams, I’ve never understood why a team would wear a softball alternate on Opening Day, but that’s what the Braves did yesterday.
• The Marlins also wore a softball alt. Granted, they had already opened their season the night before, but it still seems a little disrespectful to wear a black alt for another team’s home opener — in Cincinnati, no less! Also: That white collar piping really looks like a necklace, no?
• Speaking of that game in Cincy, bunch of vintage base ballers showed up at in uniform.
• We got our first look at Toronto’s road grays in action. I like. A lot.
• Last year the Indians wore their cream alternates with a red cap, blue sleeves, a blue belt, and blue socks. This year all the accessories are red — except, apparently, the batting helmet.
• I know it’s been done before, but I still think it’s really weird to wear a stadium-anniversary patch on your road uniform.
• Stephen Strasburg is still the pants blousing king of MLB. Seriously, he should give lessons on how to do that.
• Speaking of the Nats, WDCW, which carries Nats games, has moved its watermark to a really annoying spot. “It’s so obtrusive and distracting that it obscures players’ faces at times,” says a frustrated Brendan Slattery. “It’s the televisual equivalent of trying to watch a game behind a pole or support beam.”
• Remember my recent ESPN column about the Padres supplying uniforms to Little Leaguers? A bunch of those kids showed up at yesterday’s Padres opener in Winfield-era uniforms.
• That game also provided our first on-field look at the Padres’ new home whites.
• I’m told that the umps are now wearing memorial patches for Marty Springstead and Harry Wendelstedt (they only had a Springstead patch for the two games in Japan), but I haven’t seen this myself and couldn’t find a photo of it.
So that’s what happened yesterday. But for some teams, of course, Opening Day is today. One of those teams is the Brewers, and reader Deb Reiser, who lives in Milwaukee, has prepared for the occasion with a really fun project:
In honor of the Brewers’ home opener being on Good Friday, I did a little uni/Easter mash-up for our tailgate: Brewers player and mascot Peeps. I had fun trying to make the uniforms as realistic as possible. As it turns out, the Racing Sausages were the most challenging — especially their headgear! I didn’t have time to make all the visiting players, so David Freese is the lone Cardinal.
Very cool, Deb — enjoy your tailgating and your ballgame today.
Got an interesting note yesterday from reader Raymond Parrish, as follows:
For the past 15 years, I’ve played a lot of disc golf. My local haunt is a three-course Mecca built from scratch by my good friend Mike Trapasso on piece of land inherited from his family. He carved it out of the woods, and its bucolic setting prompted him to dub it “The Grange.”
All was well until last summer, when a very ominous cease-and-desist letter arrived from a law firm retained by the National Grange of the Order of Patrons of Husbandry, a fraternal organization for American farmers. These attorneys claimed trademark privilege on the term “grange.”
Mr. Trapasso initially thought a resolution would be relatively simple — after all, his Grange had no similarity to the fraternal farming organization, so there was no chance of confusion in the public mind. But the lawyers weren’t interested in a settlement or a painless licensing agreement and were prepared to break him through litigation. So he decided to take their offer of a pittance to offset rebranding costs and abandon the fight, renaming his facility the Blockhouse Disc Golf & Country Club.
Of course, this unwieldy name has not caught on with any of the regulars at the club (or anybody else, for that matter), so I took inspiration from Uni Watch and No Mas and created this T-shirt design. They can now be seen on the courses almost as often as flying plastic.
Uni Watch News Ticker: No way to confirm this, but here’s a potentially major (and really disappointing) bit of news from David Almonte: “A friend of mine who works with New Era told me that this year’s ‘stars and stripes’ caps are actually going to be regular team caps with camo logos.” That sound you just heard in the background was me vomiting. … In a related item, Virginia Tech softball will wear G.I.
Joe Jane uniforms tonight (from Dan Frydryk). … Hmmm, orange pants in the works for the Bears? Could be. Frankly, I think that looks pretty good. … New kits for the Charlotte Eagles (from Andrew Au). … The Dolphins are considering a logo update for 2013. … Here’s a much bigger and better slideshow of the Astrodome’s current state. “There are some old football line markers, etc., along with an Oilers sign and an old Astros sign from the ’70s,” says Clayton Lust. “But according to the reporter, those are all from the filming of Friday Night Lights and not original.” … The U.S. military wants its shrapnel-proof underwear to be more comfortable. “Because the Private’s privates must be protected,” says Chris Bisbee. … Louisiana Tech baseball wore throwbacks on Tuesday (from Josh McDaniel). … Vijay Singh has “19” printed on his ball at Augusta. “I think it refers to his number of Masters appearances,” says Steve DuHamel. … It is a sad day in the media world when the state of my Twitter feed qualifies as a news story. … Here’s a great story about John Buck’s flashy catcher’s mask (big thanks to C. Trent Rosecrans). … I don’t care about pro wrestling, but here’s something interesting from Brian Sharp: “The WWE has a YouTube channel and recently they featured Alex Riley (one of their wrestlers) showing off his prized possessions, and what does he show? His jersey and athletic shoe collection.” … Nike has signed a sponsorship deal for the 2016 Rio Olympics, but I figure there’s a decent chance an asteroid will plow into the Earth by that time, so no biggie (from Matthew Robins). … Tim Donovan spotted several Magic players wearing “NBA Green” warm-up shirts last night. Interestingly, they appear to have had their uni numbers written onto the recycling logo with a Sharpie. … Back in the Pirates’ bumblebee era, their black jerseys had plain gold lettering. But Matthew Toy was looking through the Bucs’ 1977 yearbook and found a photo showing that same jersey with white outlining on the letters and numbers. Must have been a prototype. … Speaking of jersey typography, check out Carlton Fisk’s NOB in this video clip. “Looks like it was done by pre-schoolers!” says Bob Gassel. … I’ll get around to assessing the Seahawks’ new uni next week, but meanwhile here’s something to consider: Nike says the pattern on the pants trim is based on Native American artwork, but maybe it’s just a shout-out to the Ore-Ida logo (from Robert Kahn). … The most surreal 54 seconds of your day can be spent watching this bizarre old video clip about the invention of an early football helmet. Don’t miss (from Ian Reed). … Chase Troutner spotted a car with an amusing “This is us” statement. … If you’ve had enough of Nike and/or Tiger Woods, you’ll definitely enjoy this very fun one-minute animation (big thanks to Nolan Petote):
Kicking the Habit, Day 4: I’m on cruise control now. Frankly, this is way easier than I had expected. I’ll definitely make it through the entire week, no problem. After that, we’ll see.
Happy Passover to all who are observing. A few of you have asked if I could link back to the piece I wrote last year about Passover “uniforms” and products. Here it is — enjoy.