In case you hadn’t noticed, Major League Baseball and New Era have been teaming up in an attempt to make sure that baseball stays as lame as possible. While baseball gave other sports their iconic hats, it seems that Bud Selig and company are trying to make sure that the young Americans that wear these hats remain on track to play only basketball or football, which have much more street cred and “cool” factor. I’m often struck by the fact that the best designs in all of baseball are found in the Minor Leagues, where teams are pushing the boundaries of what a uniform can look like. One has only to attend one of my beloved Vermont Lake Monster’s games to see the questionable yet daring design that uses a monster’s face, rising up from the brim of the cap as though each player was a monster themselves. This kind of thing might actually appeal to kids! But no. The Major Leagues seem set in their old ways. Indians. Simple letters in script as a logo. Lots of birds. But nothing flashy.
Unless, of course, it’s something like the awful Padres jerseys that use new camo to “honor” the massive military community in San Diego.
On July 4th I noticed — hopefully we all noticed — that MLB and New Era have outdone themselves. The Holiday Hats, in the spirit of independence, are so bad that they make anyone want to distance themselves from the sport. You can see the entire Stars and Stripes Line (which includes the awful Memorial Day camo hats) here. But here are a few examples, in a screen shot from the Lids website:
Screenshot 2014-07-07 at 3.52.51 PM
Why exactly are they so bad? Well for one, they’ve added stars everywhere. Because… well, you know. There weren’t enough stars and stripes in baseball already.
The thing that really got me however, is that they decided that all American League hats should be red, while all National League hats should be blue. Besides the obvious mismatches that this created (the Reds wearing blue hats was one that really got me), you had to ask yourself why they decided each league should have their own color, rather than choose on a team-by-team basis (which would have been too easy), and why they decided that the American League should be red. Because think about it. Out of the 15 teams in the AL, only the Angels wear red hats every day. Sure, the Rangers, Indians and Red Sox all wear red hats sometimes, but the Mariners, Astros, Twins, Indians, Royals, Tigers, Rays, Red Sox, Yankees and Blue Jays all wear navy blue hats for most of their games. Do I need to tell you how silly the Yankees looked in red?
The National League on the other hand, has five teams that always wear red hats. But of course the Phillies, Nationals, Diamondbacks, Cardinals and Reds were all forced to wear blue for the fourth. And what about teams that shouldn’t wear either color and have to add the star? Do the fucking PIRATES sound patriotic to you? No? Well what about if they ditch those black hats and replace the Jolly Roger with some happy lil’ stars over that soothing blue background?
Someone should be fired for this shit. Or better yet, someone should give me a job so I can right this wrong.
PS. This years All Star Games hats are actually great. They are doing exactly what I suggested they should do with the Stars and Stripes hats and basically just altering the cut of the front panel so that they all match. You can see the idea here
This is what they should always do. Seriously, always.