As you know, July 4 is Independence Day. In honor of this solemn occasion, MLB has taken one of the world’s nicest flags and spray-painted its pattern onto a bunch of ugly caps. And if all the Dominican, Mexican, Panamanian, Venezuelan, Japanese, Taiwanese, Colombian, Canadian, Australian, and Korean players currently on MLB rosters don’t like it, they can go back to their highly inferior countries of origin.
Same goes for any Native Americans who don’t like Cleveland’s cap: They can go back where they ca –. Uh, never mind. Seriously, they sure managed to pack a bunch of historical references into that design. Blackface/minstrelsy? Check. Smallpox blankets? Double-check. Manifest Destiny? Well, I already mentioned that in the headline.
Anyway: Teams that are playing at home on July 4 will wear white caps; teams on the road will wear gray (except for the Marlins, who’ll be playing on the road but whose cap is shown as being white). Some caps have blue brims and some have red, which is a template we’ve seen before. We all know how this works by now: The A’s, Rockies, Giants, Orioles, and Pirates will look particularly bad, because red and blue don’t work with their color schemes. The other teams will just look like clowns. U! S! A!
Responding to this nonsense on a design level seems particularly pointless, but a few of the caps deserve specific comment:
• I know the Red Sox normally wear a navy cap, but somehow their blue brim doesn’t feel right. Red would’ve been better.
• The Astros’ cap looks kinda weird with that white “H” on a white crown.
• No star-spangled design for the Blue Jays — just solid red. Makes me wonder if they’ll be wearing these caps on Canada Day, which is July 1.
And remember, we knew for a long time that teams would be wearing G.I. Joe caps for Memorial Day, but we didn’t learn until a few days before the holiday that they’d also be wearing G.I. Joe jerseys. So will there be flag-desecration jerseys to go with this new crop of caps? I think I speak for everyone here when I say
if we’re lucky we’ll all get hit by an asteroid before those jerseys are unveiled I’m waiting with bated breath to find out.
Meanwhile, here’s a sobering thought: MLB and New Era still have something up their collective sleeve for Sept. 11. Can’t wait!
The knish is out of the oven: Just thought you’d like to see (click to enlarge):
OMFG: My latest One-Man Focus Group column is about all the new airline uniforms that were unveiled last month.
Uni Watch News Ticker: Here’s a look at the New York football Giants’ new white alternate pants. Can’t say I’m nuts about the gray striping — would’ve preferred just red and blue. … The Angels have added a memorial patch for Dr. Lewis Yocum. … My ESPN.com colleague Ashley Fox is the latest voice calling for the ’Skins to change their name. … Meanwhile, an Indiana high school is keeping the name “Redskins” but removed a wooden Indian statue from their gym prior to this year’s graduation ceremony, “in order to be respectful of the many differing viewpoints on this issue” (from Kyle Fitzenreiter). … Nats skipper Davey Johnson has been growing a rally goatee (from Tommy Turner). … Also from Tommy: NFL jerseys are outselling NBA jerseys. … And yet another from Tommy: Virginia Tech stirrups orgy. … New 75th-anniversary logo for — wait for it — Superman (thanks, Brinke). … Old Dominion is the latest school to have a new basketball floor design featuring a state shape at center court (from Jonathan Leib). … “There’s a restaurant in southern California where the server gets to know his/her customers and then draws relevant (and really impressive) images for them in chocolate on their dessert plates, including lots of sports logos,” says Hugh McBride. … The Fresno Grizzlies wore Star Wars jerseys on Saturday. … A Houston Texans fan upcycled a Texans jersey into a shopping bag (Brinke again). … At first I thought these were flag-desecration uniforms, but I think they might just be the school’s regular design. Odd (from Will Morris). … San Diego State baseball has some pretty huge uni numbers (from John Furstenthal). … Scroll down just a bit on this page to see details on the Altoona Curve’s “What If We Were the Coasters” promotion (from Jerry Duke). … Someone DIY’d himself a pretty swell-looking Reds-themed soccer jersey (from Steven Crooker). … New kits for West Ham (from Jake Edwardes). … Rangers and Royals went color-on-color on Saturday. The particularly weird thing is that the Royals wore their team name on the road and the Rangers wore their location name at home (from Scott Ingalsbe). … Cardiff City’s fans have decided that the team’s new kit will have black shorts (from George Chilvers). … UNC Charlotte will have a football team for the first time this fall, and they’ve just unveiled the uniforms. … New BFBS football uni for SIU (from J. Lisenby). … Josh Donaldson of the A’s mistakenly wore the team’s BP cap on Saturday (from Ramon Meza). … Mets and Marlins played a very vibrant color-on-color game yesterday. … According to the fifth graf of this article, Red skipper Dusty Baker thinks Brandon Phillips was saved from a broken bone by his wristband (from David Sonny). … Peter Nash’s latest exposé of the game-used memorabilia market centers on a Jackie Robinson glove. … See the little black square on this Seibu Lions flag? They added that to their flag in memory of their farm director, Katsuya Sohma, who recently passed away. Never seen a memorial patch on a flag before (fascinating contribution from Jeremy Brahm). … Levi’s having already secured naming rights to the 49ers’ new stadium, is trying to trademark the term “Field of Jeans” (thanks, Brinke). … If you’re foolish enough to wear that Indians stars/stripes cap, you might also dig this Blackhawks tee. “Saw it at a local grocery superstore,” says Julie Streeter. “There’s so much wrong with it, I couldn’t help but laugh.” … The U.S. men’s and women’s soccer teams will both wear “Boston Strong” patches this month (thanks, Phil). … I’m all in favor of blousing, but Anthony Rizzo of the Cubs might’ve been better off sticking with pajama pants (screen shot by Matt Shepardson). … The Orioles misspelled one of their own players’ names on one of those “long home run” plaques (Brinke again). … Todd Tobias has written articles about three game-used jerseys from Lance Alworth’s personal collection — a Chargers home jersey and AFL All-Star jerseys from 1964 and 1965. … Check this out: the Houston Oilers’ 1983 schedule printed on a coat hanger (nice find by Ryan Rodriguez). … Nice gesture by the German soccer team, which wore a sleeve patch commemorating 100 years of American soccer for yesterday’s friendly match against the USA (from Rex Henry). … Richard Paloma says every White Sox fielder yesterday was wearing a black glove. Anyone know if that’s some kind of team-wide coordinated thing? … Louisville baseball, not content to have a flag-desecration chest insignia, wore flag-desecration uni numbers yesterday. “Vomit,” says Phil. … Good article on how Andre Agassi’s current deal with Nike (Brinke yet again). … Phil made a nice composite shot of all four Negro League throwbacks from Saturday. You can see more photos of those games here and here. … We all knew Coco Crisp shared his name with a cereal, but I didn’t know about these sweet treats until Matthew McDonough told me. … Interesting note in the middle of the sales listing for this cycling jersey: “Our exclusive tapered collar — high enough on the sides to allow for logos but tapered at the chin so as not to pinch” (emphasis mine). “Truth in advertising,” says Britt Jackson. … This is good: The Brewers’ emergency catcher is Logan Schafer, who happened to be left-handed. Here’s his glove (good stuff from Nicole Haase). … Here’s a really nice photo gallery from one of those “base ball” games played with the old rules, old unis, etc. (from David Grindem).
Research query: I’m working on an ESPN column about the NBA Finals, which means I’m looking for uni-notable aspects of the Spurs, Heat, and Pacers. Historical things, current things — it’s all good. If you have suggestions, let’s hear ’em. Thanks.