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What’s Wrong with This Picture?


This photo of Blue Jays infielder Edwin Encarnacion captures everything that’s wrong about MLB’s G.I. Joe initiative from yesterday: a Dominican player, representing a Canadian team, dressed up to celebrate the American military, on a day that has nothing to do with celebrating the military. It’s hard to imagine a less appropriate gesture (although I’m sure the MLB folks will try to outdo themselves next season).

A few other notes from yesterday:

• Although the Jays did wear camouflage lettering and numbering on their jerseys, they didn’t wear the camo caps like all the other teams did. Instead, they wore their BP caps — except for skipper John Gibbons, who wore the team’s regular game cap.

• Still more Jays news: No photo, but reader Sean Doherty says R.A. Dickey, who did not pitch yesterday, was wearing “a military-style medal” on the left side his cap while sitting in the dugout.

• Base coaches in some (but not all) games had camo helmets. In the case of the Mets’ coaches, reader Walter Young says: “That pattern was not the MLB ‘USMC’ desert MARPAT memorial day pattern. Instead it appears to be the U.S. Army’s Universal Camouflage Pattern.”

• Also going G.I. Joe: the umpires.

And then there’s this: Reader Jared Bremseth works at a shop that got a shipment of the G.I. Joe caps to sell and noticed that some of them have the USMC logo embedded in the camouflage print. So now our military camo pattern — which has become our baseball uniform pattern — is just another branding exercise. Marvy!

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Collector’s Corner

By Brinke Guthrie

Do teams even send holiday postcards like this anymore? Or do they just send email? We used to get these every Christmas. The Bengals sent these two out in December of 1971 and 1972.

Here’s the rest of this week’s finds:

• Yes, this is a 1960s Packers usher’s uniform. Or you could wear it to work on your car. Got the matching hat, too.

• Plan your day the NFL way with this 1969/1970
appointment book

• Chiefs fans, take note: I love the varsity jacket look, and I never knew Logo Athletic made these. Otherwise, I woulda been trying to weasel one out of my friend Sandy at the Bengals.

• From reader Michael Clary, a Willie Stargell bust. Woulda preferred the “We are Family” cap with the stars on it, though.

• CC doesn’t normally wade into college sports, but this Notre Dame football player bank is totally bizarre-looking.

• The NFL Hormel tin coasters are back!

• Here’s the complete NFL cookbook from 1981. With everything for Game Day Brunches to Monday Night Dinners!

Seen something on eBay or Etsy that you think would make good Collector’s Corner fodder? Send your submissions here.

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i heart candela.png

“Candela” update: As I mentioned last Friday, Kirsten and I have written a New York Times article about those fiberglass structures that we’ve long had a crush on. I’m really happy with the way it turned out — hope you’ll take a look. (Our story also got picked up by Gothamist, which is nice.)

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Uni Watch News Ticker: Several readers have noticed that Penn State is now selling a football jersey with the lion logo at the base of the collar. Will this be worn on the field? Not sure — trying to find out. Further details here. … There are rumors — which I don’t necessarily believe — about Ohio State getting new football uniforms. ”¦ A former chairman of the FCC is suggesting that broadcasters stop referring to the ’Skins by their name (from Kurt Esposito). … Meanwhile, a Wisconsin school district is scrapping its Indian head logo (from Matthew Blinco). ”¦ The MLB Network’s crawl featured a rather entertaining typo yesterday (thanks, Phil). … Great spot by reader Nick Hanson, who noticed that Red Sox catcher David Ross, recently back from a concussion, is wearing what appears to be a padded skullcap. … Here’s a list of really bad soccer uniforms (from Kurt Esposito). … SM Caen’s new kit includes a history of the club’s crests. “Pretty cool,” says Michael Orr. … David Versel notes that musician Stephen Stills has worn a lot of football jerseys over the years. … See the little area I’ve circled in this Rangers photo from last Thursday night? The guy wearing that glove is Brian Boyle, but the lettering on the glove reads “J. Halpern,” which means Boyle was wearing the gloves of former teammate Jeff Halpern, who was placed on waivers and picked up by the Canadiens back in March (great spot by Jason Simon). … Noah Crouch poking around on eBay and found some faaaascinating NBA prototype jerseys (or at least that’s what the seller is claiming they are) — one for the Pacers and one for an All-Star Game. No idea how legit they are. Anyone know more? … I keep seeing more and more of these articles advocating for the elimination of the apostrophe. … Lots of Nike college lacrosse uniforms discussed here (from Chris Wautel). … Last Friday I showed these Air Force striped stirrups. But they also have these striped stirrups. That’s a lot of stirrup stripeage! (From Peter Krumholz.) … The Bears are going to retire No. 89 for Mike Ditka, and they say this will be the last number they take out of circulation (thanks, Brinke). ”¦ Here are some more shots of Pirates dressed up as Penguins (from Jerry Wolper). ”¦ New crest for Everton, and it’s not going down so well. … Tons of amazing old sports photos here. Well worth investigating (big thanks to Matt Busch). … Anyone know why there’s a Dan Marino jersey hanging from the rafters at the Heat’s arena? I mean, yes, I get the Miami connection. But I don’t get the NFL/NBA connection (screen shot by Matt Snyder). … How wonderful to discover that the policing of logos on water bottles is an international phenomenon (from Mark Coale). … The University of New Hampshire, after a bit of controversy involving plans for a new logo, is now seeking input from the public (from Tom Mulgrew). … The Fort Wayne TinCaps wore prom-themed jerseys the other night (from Tom Meyer Klipsch). … Here’s something you rarely see any more: a hitter wearing one batting glove — on his top hand. That’s Rockies pitcher Juan Nicasio. Wear a top-hand glove used to be fairly common, or at least not unheard of, back in the day, as you can see in these pics of Rod Carew, Yaz, Donn Clendenon, and Roger Maris. Very rare nowadays, though (from John Romero). … Oregon softball has added a batting helmet decal to mark the tornadoes in Oklahoma (from Alex Allen). … In that last link, see how the shape of Oklahoma was light blue? By interesting coincidence, that happens to be same color and the undersleeves worn by the Oklahoma baseball team the other day. And as you can see, they also added a helmet decal. Were the blue sleeves also tornado-related? (From Josh Claywell.) … Holy moly — tequila sunrise in Little League! (From Paulie Sumner.) … The Bowie Baysox dressed up as the Bowie Studs the other day. “The horse racing-style jerseys were in honor of Bowie’s horse racing heritage (two Triple Crown winners have come from the stables here),” explains Leigh Bellinger. … Good article about the Rays’ equipment manager (thanks, Phil). ”¦ “The Minneapolis Star Tribune is running a three-part series on the effect booster clubs have on high school sports,” says Simon Wentzell. “Sunday’s article talked extensively about the role of corporate sponsors. I’m a little embarrassed to say I went to one of the four rich schools that are focused on in the article.” ”¦ As you may have heard, Friday night’s Mets/Braves game was suspended due to rain after eight innings, and then the game was resumed the following day. That led Mets radio broadcaster Howie Rose to ask me if there was any rule stipulating that a team had to wear the same uniforms for the resumption of the game as it had worn for the original portion of the game. I was going to joke, “Yeah, and they’re not allowed to wash out any of the dirt or grass stains either,” but instead I just said, “Not that I’m aware of.” For the record, the Mets wore pinstripes for both portions of the game. ”¦ Faaascinating communiqué from Brian Hansen, who writes: ” My wife and I went to Abilene, Kansas for a few days. One of the main attractions is the Seelye Mansion, which was built by a patent medicine tycoon and is open for tours. In the basement is a bowling-like game called Box Ball that I believe they said he purchased at the 1904 World’s Fair. It consists of a lane and five ‘pins’ at the end, which are essentially upside down-paddles. You roll a ball down the lane, and when it hits the pin, the pin pops up. There’s a lever at the front to reset the pin after each roll. They still had a pad of scorecards from its original use that indicated it was a 10-frame game. They said there are only two other box ball lanes known in existence (one in the Adirondacks) but they said this is the only one left that lets people bowl. The whole thing was great and I would’ve liked to bowl for hours, but alas I only bowled one ball.” ”¦ Nike has come out with a Jim Harbaugh tee, but the design doesn’t it doesn’t show him scowling, screaming, or generally behaving like a control-freak dick, so I’m assuming there was some sort of production glitch along the way (thanks, Brinke). ”¦ Good article about how Mark Cuban’s crowdsourcing of uni designs cheats real designers (Phil again). ”¦ The idea of star- and stripe-shaped pretzels seems dubious enough to begin with. But to refer to them as “patriot-shaped”? “Kind of sad, in my opinion,” says Brian McDavitt. I think I’d use a stronger term than that. ”¦ Anyway, everyone knows patriotism is really shaped like a skating penguin. The Pens used that as their Twitter avatar yesterday (from Aaron McHargue). … This is pretty great: a series of early-1900s baseball cards fearuring vaguely risqué/erotic content (from Phillip Garza). ”¦ Daft Punk showed up at the Monaco Grand Prix wearing custom racesuits. “I like the black-and-gold minimalism and the name and country flag on the waist,” says Brad Hufford. ”¦ For the second Sunday in a row, the Giants did not wear their orange-billed Sunday cap. ”¦ Word I heard prior to the start of the season was that the Mets’ seldom-worn black alts would be reserved for Sunday-night games. But they wore their blue alts when facing the Braves on Sunday night. ”¦ That Mets/Braves game, incidentally, was Military Appreciation Night for the Mets, but they somehow managed to refrain from going G.I. Joe or flag-desecration. Good for them. ”¦ Gee, can you guess who the stadium court camera at the French Open is sponsored by? (Thanks, Brinke.) ”¦ Here’s a young Steve Sabol of NFL Films, circa 1968, wearing a pretty groovy AFL jacket (screen shot by Dave Singleton). ”¦ This is really interesting: In this 1920 football game between Cornell and Colgate, the two teams had nearly identical uniforms, so one team — not sure which one — wore strips of white, uni-numbered fabric around their midsections to make the two squads easier to differentiate from each other (great find by Ryan Dowgin). ”¦ Rays catch Jose Lobaton offers a small feast of uni-notable headwear details: He wears his catcher’s helmet with the brim facing forward and has an unusual strap on his mask. ”¦ Check out the stripes near the knees in this photo. Is that reflective tape or something like that? ”¦ Very cool new basketball court design for Buffalo. Love that outline of New York State at center court (from Dennis Abrams). ”¦ Updated “handicapped” logo for New York City (thanks, Kirsten). ”¦ New flight attendant uniforms for Air Canada Rouge (thanks, Phil). … If you like stripes as much as I do — or even if you don’t — you’ll probably like this photo. “That’s the Lancashire rugby team from the English RFU county championships — basically a competition of representative teams from each of the English counties,” explains Doug Mulliken. … No photo, but an interesting note from Ryan Burns, who writes: “When the Duke men’s lacrosse team won the NCAA championship game, they immediately got national champion T-shirts and hats. Their head coach had them remove the shirts and hats before shaking hands with the team they just defeated so as not to rub it in their face. In my opinionn a very classy move by coach John Danowski.” ”¦ James Poisso spotted this cool Cardinals print at a memorabilia shop. ”¦ Here are BP uniforms — which are also the home run derby uniforms — for the Japanese Baseball All-Star Game (from Jeremy Brahm).

Comments (214)

    So what you are basically saying is that you have a problem with a sport that would like to play tribute to the memories of individuals that served their country?

    No. What I’m saying — as I’ve said for years, but you must be new here — is that camouflage uniforms are an extremely poor way to mark this particular holiday.

    Paul–Just curious. While appropriately noting their striped stirrups, I noticed that you omitted (properly so, IMHO) any criticism of the Air Force Academy’s camo jerseys. Can we infer that camo designs in service academy uniforms do not bother you? (If not, is it because these particular student athletes are also, in fact, active service-members?)

    As someone born Canadian (and proudly still one, though I work most of the year in the US), I wasn’t exactly thrilled with marking what is basically a “foreign holiday”. But most of the players on the team are American, the digital camouflage pattern is actually a Canadian innovation and we too have had service men and women pay the ultimate price serving in Afghanistan and in various UN peace keeping missions in recent history. But I also absolutely agree with Paul in that there should be more solemn and tasteful ways of venerating military personnel than we have seen in sports in recent years.

    Not that it changes anything, but the “USMC” and the Eagle, Globe and Anchor are actually part of the camo pattern they wear, so it’s not just for the MLB nonsense. That might just make it even more ridiculous, but I just want to clear that up for anyone not already posessing this knowledge.

    I was actually wondering if the EGA would be embedded in the MLB products, since they are marketing it as the “USMC” collection. As the EGA is embedded every three feet (I believe) laterally & horizontally within the pattern, it would make sense that it only shows up on some of the merchandise

    The camo pattern used by MLB yesterday is the USMC desert pattern. Since its inception, it has always had the Marines logo embedded in the pattern.

    Despite anyones feelings about camo jerseys being the way to celebrate it, I don’t understand how you claim the day has nothing to do with celebrating the military. It celebrates all who have died serving the country. Just because they died doesn’t mean they are no longer considered part of the military.

    Memorial Day is a day to remember and mourn those who have lost their lives fighting wars, not to celebrate the military. MLB and a lot of Americans treat it as military appreciation day, but that was and is not the point of the holiday.

    No, you illustrate exactly what’s wrong with turning it into celebrations of “the military.” Your logic is based on saying, “but they were all” this or that. But we don’t mourn the dead, we don’t honor the dead, as an anonymous, faceless, nameless mass. They’re not statistics! We mourn and honor the dead as individuals. Not as some collective “all,” but individually as an “each.” Celebrating the institution instead of paying due tribute to the individuals is cheap and lazy: It means we don’t have to get to know anything about any individual hero, someone’s beloved son or brother or wife or father, we don’t have to expose ourselves to the pain and the grief and the pride that surrounds the hole that each and every one of our fallen heroes left in the hearts of his family, his community, and her country.

    This was the first Memorial Day for me in many years when I didn’t know the name of a family member who had died in service. (New research by a distant cousin shows that he didn’t die in that battle after all.) So I’ve gone back over some books and tried to find the names of some of the ordinary soldiers I’ve read about who died in battle over the years. Like Isaac Taylor, of the First Minnesota Infantry, who fell at the climax of the Battle of Gettysburg. It’s about the men, not the institution.

    Memo to MLB – If you must do uni-related acknowledgement of Memorial Day, here’s how to do it the “right” way next year:

    1. Each team wears black armband.
    2. Moment of silence before game in memory of all who died in service to nation.
    3. Play ball.

    Note: This is designed as respectful honoring of fallen soldiers, not as means of facilitating merchandise sales. However, league remains free to make charitable donations as it sees fit. As are fans. Just w/ a bit less look-at-me-ism.

    On the Yankees- Mets broadcast yesterday, Michael Kay indicated that something to the tune of $22 million has been raised since 2008 through the sale of the various stars and stripes merchandise and donated to various veterans’ charities. The various stars and stripes hats (and now the camouflage version) appear to be popular with fans and if that leads to money supporting a worthwhile cause, I have no problem with it.

    The light blue sleeves that Oklahoma wore under their baseball uniforms this week at the Big 12 tourney were to support the tornado victims from last week. The front of the T-shirt has the state of Oklahoma and the word home on it. Also I’m hearing rumors about OU football getting some new uni’s for a game or two this year. I hope not. I’m glad OU has stuck to their traditional football uniforms and hope they never change.

    Just FYI the Everton crest link is actually not a link and is “written” out in the ticker.

    Guessing that the light blue for Oklahoma is a reference to the state flag.

    Johnny beat me to the Everton link. Typo in opening graf penultimate sentence “t1he military”.

    Oklahoma City Thunder incorporated the sky blue color in their scheme because of the flag.

    Who’s willing to bet that was a Nike staffer, or someone paid by Nike?

    You know, it’s not exactly atypical for kids to really like newfangled uni designs that us old folks find to be atrocious. After all, they’re designed partly to recruit kids to campus.

    Plus, I don’t think a Nike astroturfer would credit the coaching staff with the design.

    I’m still a “kid” and I still think everything is atrocious. Then again as an OHIO student I am kinda spoiled by our GORGEOUS uniforms (minus the BFBS of course).

    And FWIW, I’m an old, but I think the Nike Pro Combat stuff for basketball is pretty decent, all things considered, and the Army and Navy unis turned out pretty well.

    Though otherwise, I’m generally for not fixing what’s not broken.

    I wouldn’t call the new handicapped icon, or any such non-brand symbol, a logo. It’s an icon. Unless one consistently refers to the “no-parking logo.”

    I would agree.

    But the standard icon isn’t ” limited, helpless and inaccurately passive” – look, he can hail a cab! ;)

    (That’s been on our taxis for years.)

    I think I understand where they’re coming from. Good on Glenney and Hendren if they can really make their new icon as ubiquitous as the old one.

    That’s not a handicapped person hailing a cab – it’s an astronaut emerging from an airlock into a space station. Clearly.

    You’re on the right track, but you’re a bit off the mark. It’s C-3PO trepidatiously emerging from the escape pod after it touched down on Tattooine.

    Wow, NYC must have money just laying around that needs to be spent. So, they decided to update the handicap “logo” that has served it’s purpose since inception without confusion.

    Good grief, how pathetic!

    I didn’t even have to look, though I did: Of course my old high school was one of the four in that Strib story. Though I claim some innocence: In the four years I attended, the football team won four games. At least two were Homecoming games, so it wasn’t so bad. The next year, coincident with the booster club going big-time, a new football coach came in and my school went to the state championships. They’ve dominated the state since then.

    But credit where it’s due: Watch the video up top, and you see that despite all the corporate boosterism, Eden Prairie has kept it’s various student-created logos.

    And yes, the apostrophe in that possessive “it” up there was a political statement against the no-apostrophe crowd. Yeah, sure, that’s the ticket. Not an embarrassing typo at all!

    I dont know, I think I can live with no apostrophes if it means not seeing them used wrongly to depict pluralization. Just think of all the additional words that would become available for Scrabble.

    Re: the Chiefs varsity jacket by Logo Athletic…in the late 70’s, Sears use to make varsity jackets for all 28 teams. The sleeves were plasticky though and sometimes cracked when it got too cold. But my brother and I received one every Christmas (L.A. Rams for me, Houston Oilers for him) for about five years.

    Guess Sears had the official license from the league because they also sold team jerseys…though they were far from being replicas. Other than being in team colors, the jerseys had the team name (i.e., RAMS) across the front above the number. Also didn’t have names on them…mine was #11 for Pat Haden.

    I find it hard to believe that five or ten or so years down the road, the Bears wouldn’t be at least receptive to the thought of retiring Urlacher’s jersey–at least from the perspective of a non-Bears fan.

    They’re running short on numbers. The Bears could go to a “Ring of Honor” concept and honor everyone that deserves it (as it stands, Dan Hampton won’t see #99 retired either), but I’m not sure they want to un-retire numbers.

    The Maple Leafs have an interesting system: numbers are retired rarely, only for players who died or whose careers otherwise ended in tragic circumstances while on the team. All other worthies’ numbers are “honored:”

    I like the Maple Leafs’ approach and think that every sports team should do it that way. Otherwise, by 2100 or 2200 football teams will run out of numbers, basketball will have abandoned the general rule of only having digits 0-5, and baseball will be top-heavy with mostly numbers over 50. I think they should un-retire numbers too.

    I don’t know if it works for the NFL, but North Carolina has two tiers of players who go up in the rafters, “honored” and “retired”, with specific criteria for each.

    Basically, only the greats are “retired”, while the really good ones are “honored”, but their numbers can be reused.

    So for the Bears, Walter Payton would be retired, but Dan Hampton may only be honored.

    I highly doubt that the Bears would retire Urlacher’s (or Hampton’s or Richard Dent’s) number without first retiring Mike Singletary’s. Singletary’s been in the Hall of Fame for 15 years.

    In short, it’s Riley’s decision to have them up there.

    Sorry, but it’s a bit lame. Jordan’s number should only be hanging where he played, unless the NBA felt strongly enough to retire 23 league-wide (which they don’t seem to be), and then, it should be consistently applied (either every arena, or only the ones for the teams he actually played for).

    The only good reason for a football jersey to be hanging in a basketball arena is if the football team in question was relocated or contracted. I don’t see the Dolphins going anywhere any time soon, do you?

    I don’t see the Dolphins going anywhere any time soon, do you?

    Oh, I don’t know, state funding for renovations to the stadium got denied. This clearly means Dolphins can no longer survive in South Florida and its only hope of viability is some other city that will pump in millions of public money. Or so we’re asked to believe.

    To be fair, withdrawing public subsidies from any one team really does create a competitive disadvantage versus all the other teams that still benefit from public subsidies.

    American sports fans: Ain’t socialism grand?

    To be fair, withdrawing public subsidies from any one team really does create a competitive disadvantage versus all the other teams that still benefit from public subsidies.

    Doesn’t the combination of the salary cap and league-wide revenue sharing (at least for the NFL) negate that issue?

    Doesn’t the combination of the salary cap and league-wide revenue sharing (at least for the NFL) negate that issue?

    Not all revenue in the NFL is shared. Stadium-related revenue, such as that coming from suites or club seating, stays with the team. The renovations at issue with the Dolphins involved adding a roof to the stadium (I forget whether it was a full, retractable roof or a partial roof to cover the spectator seats), to make Miami’s pitch to host a Super Bowl more attractive. A big chunk of Super Bowl revenue goes to the host. And, as we saw last week, Miami lost Super Bowl L to the 49ers and Super Bowl LI to the Texans.

    And to be fair to the Dolphins, Super Bowl hosting is a sporting holy grail of sorts that *can* justify public spending on a stadium. And when East Rutherford, NJ is getting a Super Bowl, Miami is obviously losing out (not that Miami has too much trouble drawing visitors in early February, but still).

    Cross-sport number retirements aren’t anything new. The ECHL Cincinnati Cyclones actually have retired Pete Rose’s #14 (since the Reds can’t do it until he is reinstated into baseball).

    Gettysburg College picture: the ‘stripes’ along the knees look more to be sunlight reflecting off of the material than anything else.

    Re: reflective tape in the vintage football photo: I’m thinking it’s satin material that happened to catch the light that way. Reflective tape wouldn’t fade in a gradient like the photo shows.


    Look closer at the Sabol photo. It appears to me that he’s actually wearing an NFL logo jacket with a piece of tape obscuring the midsection of the NFL shield. The “AFL” appears hand-written in felt marker on the tape.

    I noticed the same thing. How primitive things were back then. Try doing that nowadays, you’ll get thrown out of the stadium on your ass! LOL

    And it looks like it was the game where Lou Saban was mic’d and he uttered the words, “They’re killing me, Whitey, they’re killing me!” Saban is standing in front of Steve.

    I get why Everton made the change to the crest, but:
    1. People fear change, sports fans especially. Opposing change for the sake of opposing change is the corollary to change for the sake of change. So any reavamping of the crest, no matter how positive, was going to piss off supporters.

    2. It looks seriously low rent. It’s one thing to simplify it and make it easier to standardize the colors, but whole another to really dumb it down. But I guess the Toffees were looking to signal some low-rent years to come with Moyes gone.

    “… Here’s a list of really bad soccer uniforms (from Kurt Esposito). … ”

    Yes, they are. Thank you, Kurt. Kinda like putting a bandit’s head on a stake to deter further atrocities.

    That link took me to a Buzzfeed article titled “Soccer Uniforms of the 90’s”.

    Typo on the Nicasio entry. “Tap hand” should be “top hand”

    Camo jerseys aren’t a big deal for me, but it’s the lack of reciprocity between the American-based clubs and the only Canadian club. For a few years in a row now the Jays have played at home on Canada Day. Have the visiting teams worn anything to celebrate it? No. On the other hand, when it comes to the 4th of July, guess what? The Blue Jays are wearing special uniforms to celebrate Independence Day.

    This year the Jays and Tigers have a July 1-4 series. It’l’ be interesting to see what the teams wear on July 1st and 4th.

    It’s a shame and a travesty that the Jays don’t wear special July 4 caps that replace the Blue Jay mascot with the Queen’s profile or an “E II R” monogram. Maybe also replace the blue on their jersey script with a sublimated Union Jack pattern.

    The Duke head lacrosse coach who gave the shirt and hat instruction is John Danowski; Matt, his son, is an assistant coach.

    There’s actually a somewhat interesting, uniform-related story behind the Marine Corps logos showing up in camouflage patterns.

    It relates more to inter-service rivalries and military procurement disfunction than traditional branding exercises.

    That NBA ASG “prototype” looks like it would certainly have fit for the game in Cleveland in 1997. It’s definitely a better look than what was worn in Phoenix and San Antonio the previous two years.

    Obviously the NBA wasn’t thrilled with the idea of city-themed jerseys by that point, though, since they ended up having the players wear their teams’ jerseys for the ASG for a few years.


    I am not saying you’re wrong but it seems strange that the Pacers would put a name of a player who never played for them on a prototype. I’ve been as fan of the Pacers since I was a kid and can find no record of a player named Malone. You’d think they would have the name of one of their stars on the jersey. Then again why would someone just make something like this up?

    I was at the Jays/Braves game last night and the absolute worst thing about those dumb-ass camo numbers was that you couldn’t read them from up in the cheap seats. Completely pointless.

    Sgt: I didn’t see you in the camouflage class yesterday, Private!!
    PFC: I guess I pass then, right?

    (ba-dum crash!)

    “… … Very cool new basketball court design for Buffalo. Love that outline of New York State at center court (from Dennis Abrams). … ”

    Now here is a subject of deep significance, at least to the sort of Uni Watch follower who is happy to veer away from sports if there’s a juicy graphic design question e.g., What US States have the best shapes?

    It’s hard not to penalize what Barney Frank used to call the “rectangular states,” those west-of-the-Mississippi jurisdictions with zero geometric interest. Imagine a basketball court with the outline of Colorado or Wyoming. Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico pretend their ever-so-slight irregularities merit attention, but they’re wrong. And Kansas and the Dakotas, much as I love them (especially NoDak), no, sorry, a squiggly river on your eastern boundary does not an interesting shape make. Connecticut gets no credit whatsoever for the town of Greenwich inserting itself into Westchester County.

    Top Ten State Shapes, in reverse order:

    10. Florida
    9. Idaho
    8. Tennessee
    7. California
    6. Maryland
    5. New York
    4. Texas
    3. Oklahoma
    2. West Virginia
    1. Massachusetts

    And comments like this help you earn your handle. ;)

    Not that I’m biased by any means.

    In the Amazon “Customer Reviews” I noticed the author makes a reply in the 3rd review (by Goldfarb) that comes up: “Some helpful information, but woefully incomplete”. Things are included in the paperback that weren’t there in the hardcover.

    Goldfarb mentions on the Alaska boundary dispute how the border was subject to a vote of 6 people, 3 from each country. What HE failed to mention is that the UK was still in charge of foreign affairs for Canada and they picked 2 Canadians and 1 English man. The vote went 4-2; three guesses to which country the 4th vote was from.

    Little tidbit of state-shape info for you all: you can flip the bird to people while at the same time making a near perfect shape of WV. Some call it a “West Virginia Howdy”.

    Use your right hand, palm toward yourself, and make sure to have your thumb OUT. Lookie, lookie, the great state of West By God!

    Tennessee? Massachusetts? Ugh.

    Look, I get that the oddly shaped states draw the eye. But the linear states of the West – or even Eastern prototypes like Connecticut and Pennsylvania – are a real and valid class of state shapes. Any Top 10 list must include either Colorado or Wyoming to represent the form.

    And where are the beautiful trio of Minnesota, Iowa, and Wisconsin? Both Minnesota and Iowa take linear forms along key boundaries but interrupt them with nonsensical appendages that serve no purpose beyond pure aesthetic transgression. Plus, pork-happy Iowa is shaped like a pig. How does that fail to rate Top 10 status? And Wisconsin. Oh, Wisconsin, state of beautiful lines, state of watered edges. Make a fist with your right hand. Tuck your thumbnail under the fold of your index finger. Hold your fist up, back of your hand to your eye. Wisconsin!

    I can see how someone might not think Tennessee is as great as it is. But Massachusetts?! It’s got everything. The adorable way that NH and Mass share the Merrimack River, the picky-picky little jigs and jags that constitute the Mass / RI line, that little rectangle taking a bite out of Connecticut, and the graphic glory that is Cape Cod?

    Best of all, maybe, is the western-most corner. Close inspection reveals a little dogleg to the southeast where NY, Mass and CT come together. The straight south-by-southwest diagonal that runs from the VT corner towards CT takes a turn at the very last minute! But that turn, that little dogleg, wasn’t created until 1853.

    Here’s why. The Taconic Mountains (not the Berkshires, btw) provided a formidable barrier for Bay Staters who lived in the tiny triangle of Mass that lay to the west of these towering peaks. Berkshire County sheriffs hated to have to go from the county seat in Lenox, down the mountains, arrest a hooligan, and then have to bring him back up the damn mountains. Since there were only a few dozen Mass citizens west of the Taconics, and since they did all their business in NY anyway, Mass and NY in 1851 agreed that Mass would cede the tiny triangle to NY. The problem was that the US Constitution explicitly requires the approval of Congress for border adjustments between the states and Congress was in no hurry. So until Congress finally got around to discharging its duty, there was a colorful interval in which Mass didn’t enforce Its laws in the triangle, NY didn’t enforce its laws in the triangle, and so the triangle (called “Boston Corners”) attracted activities that were, well, lawless. The best example was the staging of the heavyweight championship boxing match in a big outdoor field. Boxing was illegal in NY and Mass back then (and almost everywhere else, for that matter), as was gambling, as was public drunkenness, all much in evidence that fateful day. The brawling dipsomaniacal bravos of New York City came in droves, and there was a huge amount of money riding on the outcome of the fight between two Irishmen (of course). After the customary multi-round contest, a new champion was crowned, and those who bet on the loser then marauded through the nearby farms, killing cattle and roasting them on open-air spits, etc, etc. Thoroughly bad behavior, but it did prompt Congress to get to work.

    Oh yeah, so that’s why there’s that little dogleg. Which contributes to the graphic sublimity of the Bay State.

    Utah is shaped like the protective screen they put in front of the pitcher’s mound during batting practice. How is that not better than Tennesee’s ragged parallelogram?

    Wyoming is filled with hot pots, geysers, and some really, truly crazy people. It’s the mullet of states: business on the borders, party inside.

    State-shape trivia time: the state with its capital closest to the geographic center of the state also has its capital bordering the edge of the state. This sounds impossible, but it isn’t. Which state is this?

    More state-shape trivia: Which is the only state that has absolutely no straight lines for borders?

    But Hawaii doesn’t border any other state, does it? Wait, is that the point?

    Delaware. Due to measuring errors by the Mason & Dixon expedition, each of the apparently straight lines along Delaware’s western and southern borders are actually slightly crooked. True fact.

    (I’m sure the “answer” is Hawaii, but that’s baloney. Hawaii has no borders. So I’m going with Delaware. As we know from T Pynchon’s groundbreaking research into the Mason & Dixon expedition, they were high as a kits half the time.)

    “Connecticut gets no credit whatsoever for the town of Greenwich inserting itself into Westchester County.”

    that’s greenwich, stamford, darien, new canaan and norwalk!

    and when talking about connecticut, don’t forget the notch! Keeps Massachusetts from sliding into the atlantic…

    What about the “lost” state team of Absaroka Eagles (aka Rapid City)….would love to see their Uni’s

    West Virginia:

    Farther north than Pittsburgh, PA
    Farther south than Richmond, VA
    Farther east than Rochester, NY (I’m pretty sure)
    Farther west than Cleveland, OH

    As basically the only competitive orienteer & uni watch guy, this thread geeks me out. I love maps!

    Another state shape trivia… which two states share a border that is an arc of a perfect circle?

    Colorado and Wyoming are not rectangles, they’re trapezoids. The northern edge of each is shorter than the southern edge (due to the convergence of the lines of longitude).

    According to the internet, the difference for Colorado is 21 miles.

    Ah, but on the surface of the earth, each state has 4 corners of 90 degrees. A rectangle doesn’t cease to be a rectangle just because the plane it’s on is distorted. Otherwise the expansion of space/time would render all lines non-parallel, and there would be no rectangular forms anywhere.

    Oh no they don’t – latitude and longitude lines only form exact 90 degree angles at the equator. Anywhere else, where lines of longitude converge, all angles are acute.

    OK, to bring this home: What sports teams use their states as logo elements? Top of my head, I’ve got Minnesota Twins and Milwaukee Brewers. (Counting secondary logos, natch.) Who else?

    Baseball’s Angels did occasionally between stints as Los Angeles Angels and Anaheim Angels. The AL Rangers also had a few maps in their day.

    When they retire Ditka’s number at Soldier field, they’d better get George Wendt and the Superfans to conduct the ceremony on the field. Otherwise it just wouldn’t be right.

    Da Bears.

    Re the Daft Punk racing suits: “I like the black-and-gold minimalism and the name and country flag on the waist,” says Brad Hufford.

    The name and national flag on the waist is fairly common practice in international motor racing.

    Oregon softball has added a batting helmet decal to mark the tornadoes in Oklahoma (from Alex Allen)

    There were a few softball teams that had that same decal in their Super Regionals this past weekend. I know Nebraska wore them vs Oregon (can’t find any pictures). Here’s one of Kentucky.

    Dear Paul,
    I know we’ve discussed this before but “Good article about how Mark Cuban’s crowdsourcing of uni designs cheats real designers”, kind of misses the point.
    It’s not that it cheats “real designers”, it cheats EVERYBODY. For some reason, there are SO many people willing to work for free, why should businesses pay for “ideas”? “Ideas”, creative works are free, right? I mean, there’s no money involved. It’s just thinking. (Sorry. Touchy subject. I’ve managed to lose two careers due to people willing to do the job for free. (20 years as a DJ and 15 years doing computer repair) I’m 50, now. What am I supposed to do?)

    RE: the Colgate vs Cornell white tape game, are the Xs on the helmets tape as well? The stripes dont seem to be fully consistent? (2 players on the right side of the pic seem to have different lengths of white on the left side of their helmet)

    Yes, I believe that is white tape on the helmets as well. I am trying to find a game article that talks about the uniforms. No luck yet.


    Saw this and thought of you – a Fargo-Moorhead Forum article on bars per capita (complete with infographic!).

    Although North Dakota has the most bars per capita at 1,621 for every watering hole, my fair homeland of Wisconsin puts in a good showing in third with one per 1,877 residents. And that with more than eight times the population…

    While I would love to live in a state that had 7k bars per person, they more likely mean peeps per bar. They owe me a bar for that error.

    Looks like whoever designed that thinks that those in wheelchairs also like to wheelchair race…

    Uh, this was supposed to be a reply to the comment about the updated NYC handycap logo. What happened to that comment?

    What’s wrong with a Dominican player paying tribute (even if the tribute isn’t that great) to the military of the country where he lives for half the year?

    Lots of things. But for starters:

    1. Memorial Day isn’t about “paying tribute to the military.”

    2. The Dominican player in question lives half of the year IN CANADA, not America.

    I’m not in favor of armbands either — I just think that would be better than camouflage.

    In general, I think forcing foreigners to pay tribute to our military is in poor taste; when the foreigners are playing for a Canadian team, it morphs from poor taste to absurdity; and when the gesture mischaracterizes the holiday at hand, it becomes bad history and bad civics to boot.

    The Boston Globe mentioned David Ross’ protective cap over the weekend.

    David Ross wore his usual goalie-style catcher’s helmet on Saturday against the Indians. But in his first game back after suffering a concussion on May 11, Ross took extra precautions. Ross wore a Kevlar skullcap under his helmet, a stretchy material fitting around his head like a beanie. The device, designed for pitchers, was an extra layer of protection. The trainers also attached some gel padding inside his helmet in the front.

    “The two balls that got me hit my mask right where forehead is and that scared me,” Ross said. “I was willing to do anything to get a little more protection.”

    Ross sent one of his masks out to get fitted with an interior layer of Kevlar. Until it comes back, he’ll wear the black skullcap.

    Paul, I get why you don’t care for native american images being used by sports teams but what’s with all the military hate?

    Yeah Paul, why do you hate the military??

    Next you’ll be saying “No tribute to cute puppies on uniforms!” Why do you hate cute puppies?? ;^)

    It’s a sad day that, as a country, we’ve been told & taught & encouraged to associate criticism of something pertaining to the military as hate for the military military, or being unpatriotic, or whatever you want to call it.

    Even the Wounded Warrior Project seems to be getting in on the act. There was an ad on the mobile version of the site yesterday (presumably because the topic was Memorial Day & the military) that essentially was saying “celebrate the day by honoring our injured veterans.” Now, Lord knows I don’t have the stones to serve in the military, but they’re diluting the message of and reason behind Memorial Day and, originally, Decoration Day.

    Oh please, 99% of the people I know took the day to BBQ and watch baseball. So, you’ll excuse me if I don’t buy into the “they’re diluting the message of and reason behind memorial day”.

    Besides, are you only a good American if you spend every waking moment of the day honoring fallen soldiers?

    Also, who exactly are “they” that are diluting the holiday? By your measure, if you, personally, didn’t spend the entire day honoring fallen troops, you are part of the collective “they”.

    Or, one could be less intellectually lazy about paying tribute to the meaning of the day, and still enjoy the day off.

    I suppose it’s fine and dandy that we’re paying tribute to the military. The problem is, people at MLB think throwing on cammo and saying, “Gooooo military!” is somehow proper tribute to a day for individuals who sacrificed their lives. To me, that’s worse than not commemorating the military at all.

    so a better uniform “memorial” might be this:

    allow each player to change his nameplate to honor a fallen serviceman… perhaps with rank… so the nameplates might read something like this:


    each player gets to choose who they honor… so it might be a father, or uncle… lot’s of stories for the media to pick up on…

    I think this would be MUCH better gesture of honor…

    I like that, though I’d be happier with something simpler, as long as it’s not martial/jingoistic.

    I think English soccer clubs get it right for Remembrance Day (equivalent of Veterans Day), when pretty much everyone wears a paper poppy. It’s understated enough to befit a somber occasion, supports a well-established charity, and players have the option of not wearing the poppy.

    When I was in high school and Jim Harbaugh was the QB for the Colts, he was my hero. He was given the nickname Captain Comeback and he was a class act, and I liked how the first thing he said during an interview was how he’d like to thank his Lord and savior Jesus Christ. How many professional athletes have the balls to say that live on national tv?

    Now, I don’t get to watch a lot of 9ers games so I guess I haven’t witnessed it first hand, but has Jim really turned into a “scowling, screaming, control-freak dick”?

    Paul, if you could give specific examples of him acting that way I’d appreciate it because right now I’m finding it hard to believe.

    I liked how the first thing he said during an interview was how he’d like to thank his Lord and savior Jesus Christ. How many professional athletes have the balls to say that live on national tv?

    Um, many dozens of athletes that we’ve all seen over the years..?

    As for Harbaugh’s current sideline demeanor, just watch a Niners game. And I say this as a lifelong Niners fan.

    He’s hardly the only NFL coach who fits this description, of course. But he seems to bug out a little more than most of his peers. It’s embarrassing.

    I’ll be a lifelong fan of any athlete who ever says in a postgame interview, “I blame Jesus Christ for our loss tonight. He totally let the team down.”

    Me too. Or any athlete who says, “I want to give a shout out to physics, training, and blind luck.”

    You know that old story about the guy talking with Jesus looking at their footprints on the sand? The way I like to tell it, the guy asks Jesus, “But what about back there, where I only see one set of footprints?” And Jesus replies, “That was when you were telling everyone that I helped you win a football game. I left you to go comfort your opponents. They were really going through a tough time and needed someone to reach out to them. You didn’t seem interested in loving your neighbors right then, so I left you and stepped up. You’re cool with that, right?”

    Speaking of ‘Murica….

    I don’t even know why there is a US flag on NFL helmets. I know they started that after 9/11 and stuff, but is a flag decal *really* necessary? I’d answer “no”.

    It helps with the concussions. If someone gets a concussion and is asked what country they are in, they can just see it on the helmets.

    Of course it isn’t necessary. None of this “America, Fuck Yeah! / Hail the All-Mighty Military” crap is necessary.

    We aren’t Klingons who live for battle and conquest, and service does not guarantee citizenship.

    Perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad if they only did this on holidays, but it seems like every week we’ve got some minor league team or high school or whatever wearing a new camo uniform to pay tribute to the troops, and anyone who doesn’t like it gets accused of hating the military and/or America. It does nothing but promote the idea that the military is somehow superior and above criticism, and that is absolutely not a good thing for a supposedly free society.

    Well put, The.

    Remember when Obama didn’t wear a flag pin, and everyone assumed that it was because he hated America?

    It’s insane.

    I just think the flag looks bad/forced on most helmets. (I guess it IS forced, eh?)

    Remember when Obama didn’t wear a flag pin, and everyone assumed that it was because he hated America?


    It seemed like everyone, but my perspective is skewed.

    I live in Texas. I once said something nice about Obama at a family get-together.

    My in-laws now think I’m Che Guevarra.

    Seems like it’s just a big game of chicken. No one wants to be the first team to take the flag off because of the shitstorm that would almost certainly ensue.

    I can see the headline on FOX News now: “Do the Patriots hate America?”

    Goddamn, now teams aren’t allowed to have the American flag either?! WTF is wrong with you people?!

    I was watching the Angels/Dodgers game last night, and the home plate umpire was not wearing the camo cap that the other three umps were wearing.

    Jose Lobaton’s mask strap was not any different than that worn by any player who wears the All-Star brand catcher’s mask. It may have looked odd because it was a contrasting colour. Here is a link to the All Star website, showing a traditional mask. The triangular strap is shown at the bottom right of the photo, which is the same as Jose Lobaton’s.

    Eric Hoffer argues that “every great cause in America starts as a movement, becomes a business, and eventually degenerates into a racket.”

    When you mix three of the greatest movements cum rackets in America — sports, religion, and patriotism — you end up with athletes in camo uniforms thanking Jesus for helping them beat their opponents.

    NFL Teams (at least the Ravens) still send Holiday cards. They’re not as cool as those Bengals ones though, they just have the team picture on the front.

    The new basketball floor at the University at Buffalo looks great but certainly fuels speculation that the athletic teams will be rebranded with “NY” or more likely “SUNY” in their name. It will be great for the entire system as NY is off the top of my head the only state without a flagship university’s athletic programs carrying its name, but it’s a shot at what UB has done to make itself a part of the Buffalo community and stresses an allegiance to a state that many in Western NY feel autonomous of. The character and culture of Buffalo greatly differs from the NYC area that many from outside blanket the entire state to be, and it will be a shame if the University at Buffalo loses a bit of that name recognition.

    They’ve been trying to emphasize the SUNY thing for years. I grew up a couple of miles from the UB Amherst campus. When I was in junior high school, there was a movement to encourage people to call the school “SUNYAB” (which was pronounced “sun-yab”). It never took.

    Technically, it’s the “University AT Buffalo”, but everyone calls it “University of Buffalo”. Plus, there’s a big bronze bison on campus. It’s hard to see Buffalo fading from the UB identity.

    I’m still calling it SUNY-Binghamton.

    That’s what it was when I went there in the 1980s. Then they tried to bury from the SUNY affiliation, so the school became University Center at Binghamton, and then just Binghamton University.

    Fuck all that. It’s SUNY-Binghamton. They should be proud to be part of (indeed, the crown jewel of) one of the nation’s top state university systems.

    Livestrong is pretty much dunzo, right? It basically existed to bankroll Lance Armstrong, and he cut ties with the organization right around the time of the Oprah interview.

    These were the shirts that OU wore during the Big 12 Tourney. The OU women wore that logo as a sticker on the front of their helmets.

    When I was a season-ticket holder for the Falcons a few years ago, they sent me a Christmas card for both years I was a ticket holder, as I’m sure they did all their season-ticket holders. They didn’t look anything as beautiful as the Bengals ones though. It was just their team picture.

    Seriously, we need to build a bridge and get over the camo bashing, enough already. It is obviously YOUR opinion that wearing the camo is in bad taste and you are absolutely entitled to it; however how do the people in the military or the families of soldiers that have given their lives for our freedoms feel? Are they offended? It’s getting tiring seeing people fight for a cause they think offends because they feel it’s the politically correct thing to do. In MY opinion these people are far more ignorant than the ones they are persecuting for trying to recognize something, whether right, wrong or indifferent.

    how do the people in the military or the families of soldiers that have given their lives for our freedoms feel?

    Glad you asked. I asked that question myself a few years ago:

    Just to be clear, though, while I think it’s interesting to know how military personnel feel about camouflage uniforms, I also believe, strongly, that their opinions on this topic are no more (or less) important than mine, yours, or anyone else’s.

    If you’d like to continue this dialogue, that’s fine. But you’ll have to do it without using the terms “bashing” and “politically correct,” which are non-starters here. Thanks.

    Sorry Paul, I didn’t realize those words were off limits, I will be more cognizant of this in future postings.

    As a serving NCO in the US Army I think the constant “Support our Troops” camo unis is distasteful.
    We wear camo as a part of our uniform and as a requirement for survival. Teams seem to wear it as a fashion statement. I get that they sometimes donate a portion of sales to funds like the USO or Wounded Warrior but seeing young men who are making a ton more money then my Soldiers wearing UCP/ACU/MARPAT/ patterned uniforms for 3 days doesn’t really sell me on the fact that the NFL/MLB/Minor League/NCAA cares about Service Members.
    Leave the camo to the professionals and learn to blouse your pants.

    Having read my comments from a few years ago, I realize I have become more bitter as the amount of “Military Appreciation” unis have increased.

    It comes up in the Indian mascot discussions, but the “These people aren’t offended/it’s not about you” arguments are seriously unproductive and intellectually dishonest.

    I don’t hate camouflage for being inappropriate; I hate it because it’s ugly.

    Oops. I was going to say that the New era caps Facebook page said that the BP caps of the A’s and the Giants would be making their premiers tonight. That’s probably why they didn’t wear them on Sunday.

    I thought BP hats were for high-temperature day games, and it looks like it’ll be in the mid-50’s/low-60’s tonight.

    Everton are sort of backpedalling on the new crest.

    We’re stuck with the new one, since they are “too far along” with next year’s merch production to change.

    BUT … They will do a better job in consulting the supporters when they make ANOTHER new badge for 14-15.

    I was reading a biography of John XXIII, which discussed Vatican II. A line read something to the effect of “sometimes when you really want to restore a picket fence to its original state, you can’t just slap a coat of paint on it; you have to strip it down to the original wood and start again.”

    In reference to the new Everton badge, I think it was a good idea to go to the actual Everton Tower, and try to render it more accurately. Also, the color standardization (a richer blue color, and a hint of gold trim) was good. Losing the motto and the twin wreaths were probably a couple of steps too far. Restore those elements, and I think the supporters would be content.

    It seems like any list (this one is no exception) of worst soccer (football) shirts/kits of all time is dominated by those worn in the ’90s. I would be interested to see a list of worst kits of the past 15 years or so, when those garish patterns fell out of favor, as well as a list focused on historical designs (i.e. pre-advertising on the shirts).

    Found this interesting. This is the new Simpson-Ganassi “SG” football helmet. I’ve been hearing about it for two years when Austin Colllie wore a proto-type because of concussion issues. The helmet has been pretty hush hush with the only info being that it was half the weight because of the use of a kevlar shell, but now you can own one on their website…for just under $400.

    Here’s the rub. Looking at this video for the fitting, it looks just like the insides of a racing helmet without the liner and with little rubber pads you put in for comfort. The ear pads are even velcro. I’m interested to see where this goes. Granted, it may be a great helmet, but its sparse, unconventional look may scare a lot of people away.

    Buffalo’s Central Terminal, a very interesting and long-neglected building, featured a giant bison statue on its main concourse. It was the first thing visitors saw when they arrived in the Queen City.

    A replica of that bison was placed on the UB Amherst campus in 1997. As much as I like the new UB basketball floor, it would have been so much cooler if they’d replicated that standing bison at midcourt.

    Not sure if this was answered but the Oregon memorial patch and the Oklahoma sleeves are not just coincidence. That’s the color of the Oklahoma state flag.

    Hope this helps.

    Paul, this is the second time (that I recall) that you stated something along the lines that Memorial Day has “nothing to do with celebrating the military”. The day honors those that died while serving in the military. I think that has something to do with celebrating the military.

    Add Red Sox and Phillies to the list of teams wearing BP hats tonight. Is this a league-wide thing?

    In Canada every November 11th is Remembrance Day. Coaches who are coaching in Canada on that day where a poppy to salute the veterans…..there is no holiday (except gov. and banks). Leagues in Canada do not force visiting countries to “salute our troops”. I am neutral here…all I’m getting at (I guess..) is USA is RAH RAH RAH ARMY!, LET’S CELEBRATE DESTRUCTION POWER! But the rest of the world is like “seriously???”
    And then Canada, shhhhhhh…rest of world doesn’t even know you exist.
    Although I do plead ignorance on these topics..(I think my Australian Shiraz has taken me over..HAIL)!

    I loved that the GI Joe cammo yesterday was often paired with outlines that made everything thing just about impossible to read. The Mets orange, the Pirates gold, etc, and especially for those in road grays. Why not just go the whole way and make them wear team colored cammo like the Pirates did a few weeks ago and combine it with yesterdays cammo for the lettering/numbers just to insure nothing can be seen or read. Please don’t tell me I gave them any ideas!!

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