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I’ll Have a Eucalyptus Burger and a Foster’s, Mate: MLB Heads Down Under

For the past dozen years or so, MLB has staged season-opening overseas series on a quadrennial cycle. They began in 2000 with the Mets and Cubs and then followed up in 2004 (Yanks/Rays), 2008 (A’s/Bosox), and 2012 (A’s/Mariners). So the assumption — okay, my assumption — was that the next overseas series would be in 2016.

Nope. As you may have seen, MLB’s 2014 schedule was released yesterday, and it calls for the Dodgers and Diamondbacks to open the season with two games in Sydney, Australia. These will be the first MLB games ever played in the Southern Hemisphere (all the other overseas series were in Japan), and the dates — March 22 and 23 — are right after the equinox, which means the MLB marketing folks could have had some fun by dubbing this the “first Fall Classic of 2014” or some such. But that’s apparently not in the cards, at least judging by the logo they released yesterday (click to enlarge):

Not bad, right? The bridge is the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and the thing next to it is the Sydney Opera House, which is almost certainly the first (and probably last) opera house to be featured on an MLB logo design.

All previous overseas season openers have entailed corporate jersey and helmet advertising, and that will presumably be the case again with this two-game Aussie series. Meanwhile, anyone know if they plan to stick with the four-year cycle and do another Japanese series in 2016?

Meanwhile, as long as we’re talking about MLB, here are a few other news tidbits:

• It happens at least once every season: a ball ends up inside an MLB player’s jersey. At least this time it was a foul ball, not a ball in play.

• Delta Airlines has a Mariano Rivera-themed plane. Wrong number font, though!

• MLB umps are wearing “FP” memorial patches for Frank Pulli, who passed away two weeks ago.

•  The Mets will wear first responder caps before tonight’s game and then, like all other MLB teams, will do the annual 9/11 pandering thing. If you look at the fine print of that last link, you’ll see that net proceeds from cap sales are going to various Sept. 11 memorials, which is nice. You’ll also see that the flag-emblazoned caps are made in China, which is the kind of irony that net proceeds can’t buy.

(My thanks to Jason Werth and Phil for their contributions to this section.)

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Membership update: We have two slots open on the current batch of membership cards (a batch that includes Bill Solich’s clever Browns-themed card, shown at right). So the next two people who sign up will receive their cards very quickly, with very little waiting time.

As always, you can sign up for your own custom-designed membership card here, and you can see all the cards we’ve designed so far here.

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’Skins Watch: The next ’Skins game is at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, where there will be a protest of the team’s name and logo. Expect to see a lot more of this as the season progresses, turning the ’Skins road schedule into a traveling show of protest and activism. Imagine what would happen — what will happen — if they make it to the Super Bowl. The protests will become the main story of the lead-up to the big game. … Grantland writer Charles P. Pierce referred to the ’Skins as “the Heedless Insults” in his story on Monday night’s Philly/Washington game (from Carlos Ahmed Jalife Ruz). … Haven’t seen the video or found other confirmation, but several readers tell me that SportsCenter morning anchor Neil Everett referred to the ’Skins as “the Washington football team” yesterday.

NFL News: Robert Griffin III was told to cover up his knee brace on Monday night (from Kyle Allebach). … Anquan Boldin, now with the 49ers, is still wearing his Ravens shoulder pads (from Carlos Borge). ”¦ Bit of a typo by the Chargers on Monday night. ”¦ Reprinted from last night’s comments: Eric Berry of the Chiefs wore a sock on his left arm on Sunday (from Lee Wilds).

College Football News: New merit decals for USF (thanks, Phil). … Arizona State is going with blackout uniforms and a firefighters memorial decal this Saturday (from Marc Altieri). … It’s a little hard to see, but Miami’s helmets now have an outline of the state of Florida with a star marking Miami’s location. Is that new for this year? (Good spot by Josh Harris.) … UGA RB Todd Gurley’s request for a Roman numeral on his jersey last year was turned down by UGA’s director of equipment. So he asked again this year, and this time his request was approved (from Britton Thomas). … Good — or, if you prefer, godawful — gallery of flag-desecration helmets here (from Drew Roberts). … Iowa State will be wearing its totally gorgeous throwbacks this weekend. And you know what would go really well with those uniforms? This awesome stadium blanket. Okay, so it isn’t cold enough yet for a stadium blanket, but that works out fine, since the blankets won’t be ready to ship until October. Anyway, great item! … Richmond had some helmet issues last weekend (from Tommy Turner). … Just when you thought you’d seen every conceivable commemorative decal and patch, Maryland comes up with a “Final season in the ACC” decal (from MJ Kurs-Lasky). … Repeated from last night’s comments: Yesterday I mentioned that UNC-Charlotte is wearing a Conference USA patch even though they aren’t yet officially part of the conference. Turns out the same can be said for Old Dominion, which is officially independent and will join C-USA next season (from Ryan Rudman).

Hockey News: New mask for Sergei Bobrovsky (thanks, Phil). … In case you didn’t know that the Barclays Center is in Brooklyn, well, now you do (from Benjamin Antell).

College Hoops News: New unis for Colorado (thanks, Phil).

Soccer News: Last graf of this article suggests that FC Dallas might wear a Dallas Tornadoes throwback in 2015 (from Markus Kamp). … “Was watching an ESPN promo with DeMarcus Beasley before Tuesday’s Mexico v. USA game and noticed his club team, Puebla, was wearing actual orange ribbons (not ribbon patches) on their unis,” says John Childers. “Couldn’t find out what for.” ”¦ Speaking of the USA/Mexico match, here’s what the ball looked like (from Warren Junium).

Grab Bag: Nike is being added to the Dow Jones Industrial Average (from Brian Wulf). … Davidson Day High School in North Carolina wore flag-desecration uniforms the other day (from Colby Brock). … The NYC Police Department has its own football team, and they seem to have a really unusual helmet shell design. No word on whether they stop and frisk opposing players (from Coleman Mullins). … In a vaguely related item, here’s an absolutely amazing infographical site that tracks all the NYPD’s stop-and-frisks from 2012. Click around — the interface is very simple but very pleasing. ”¦ James Madison High School in Virginia uses the old Atlanta Falcons logo (from Kevin Corcoran). ”¦ Key passage in this article about the upcoming winter Olympics (brought to my attention by Phil): “But the I.O.C. has not answered such questions as: Will athletes face expulsion if they demonstrate on the medal stand, or wear T-shirts or rainbow pins or patches on their uniforms [in protest of the Russian antigay law]? What if someone wears rainbow-colored nail polish, symbolizing the gay pride flag, as a Swedish high jumper did at last month’s track and field world championships in Moscow?” Later in the same article: “At the track and field championships last month, the Swedish female athlete who wore rainbow nail polish said she was asked by officials not to do it again.” And this: “Asked whether an athlete in Sochi should be disqualified for wearing a rainbow pin, Anita DeFrantz of the United States, a longtime I.O.C. delegate who rejoined the committee’s executive board Tuesday, said: ‘That sounds like it’s moving too far. Sometimes, somebody just being alive is a protest against something, so I think we have to be careful regarding what is or is not allowed.'”

Comments (137)

    Question for non-Skins fan opposed to the name. Do you find yourself rooting against them more than you would any other team that is not a chief rival? I guess this is more for fans outside of the NFC East.

    Still. I feel there’s a great difference between taking an ethnic slur as a team name vs an ethnically-identified honorific. I have little problem with the name “Braves” but much more with the “Screaming Brave” logo. Other than some very old logos, I’m not even familiar with such a logo for the Chiefs.

    Certainly. And I live in DC, so I end up rooting against them even more to try to counterbalance all the love for them that surrounds me. I would like to see the team go 0-16 every year.

    Me too. If they’d but change the name, I’d become a fan in a heartbeat. But with the name, the Redskins are basically the only team that can make me root for the Cowboys, Eagles, or Bears.

    The English language has, by conservative counts, 300,000 ordinary words. I have heard maybe 20 of them shouted in anger as a racial, religious, or other group insult, including “redskin.” If Dan Snyder would simply call his team one of the other 299,980 words, I’d be all about the burgundy and gold.

    Like Berto, I live in the DC area, and I *want* to like the ‘Skins (RGIII seems like a nice fella), but then I see the nickname and the logo.

    Redskins is an insulting name and I have said so since the early 70s when I was a teen. Doesn’t make me root any harder against them though. The name needs to be changed and should have been years ago. No one would use a word like “Injuns” would they? No they would not. I implore Daniel Snyder to take the initiative and change the name. It doesn’t have to be a big negative. Turn it into something quite positive.

    I do think there is a place for Native American mascots if done correctly. Indeed, if you look at New Zealand, they have at least one rugby team that uses Chiefs and Maori, Native New Zealanders, imagery and costumes in their matches. Difference is that was all coordinated with the Maori such as Florida State coordinates with the Florida Seminole tribe. This is how it should be done, properly coordinated and making the Native Americans truly part of the team if you will just as the Chiefs in New Zealand and the All Blacks have done with the Maori.

    Strange but true: Although the Maori were the first humans on New Zealand, they’re not native. In fact, New Zealand had no native mammals except bats and seals when the Maori arrived there. All the other mammals in New Zealand — four million people, 60 million sheep, etc. — are introduced species.

    I’m not suggesting that this affects the issues of cultural imperialism, racism, and all the other things the Maori have dealt with — it doesn’t. I just think it’s interesting.

    Although the Maori were the first humans on New Zealand, they’re not native.

    Oh bosh. Sure, the Maori represent one of the last settlements of Polynesian peoples – if I recall something like 900 years ago. But come on. If the first people to a place are not “native,” even if they “only” arrived 900 years ago, then the word “native” cannot properly be applied to any human group outside of east Africa.

    There is said to be no indigenous land mammal species across all of Polynesia. Since something like 13,000 years ago, Polynesians explored and settled the many island chains, often bringing entire ecosystems of mammals and agriculture with them – and doing so in canoes. Really one of the most remarkable chapters in human history.

    I’ve heard the same thing said about North American First Nations, that all of the current tribes are descended from a group of people who migrated across a land bridge that existed across the Bering Strait prior to the last ice age.

    Unfortunately, that particular theory has been picked up by an appalling number of people to suggest that first nations are also immigrants to North America, are not really aboriginal, and thus don’t have any special rights or status over “later immigrants”.

    The theory that Native Americans are descended from several waves of migrants from Asia is the generally accepted understanding of human settlement of the Americas. Far as we know, all tribes are descended from people who came across the Bering Strait.

    But that doesn’t matter. What makes someone a “native” in this context? The native is the person living in a place when someone else shows up to settle there too. So American Indians are native peoples, and so are the Maori.

    One of the linked articles yesterday mentioned the writer traveling to the Pacific Northwest and marveling at how respect for the indigenous culture is basically part of the local culture, and they somehow manage to respect Indians without caricatures and “savages” imagery.

    I also wonder if Dan Snyder is resistant to change the name out of fear of local backlash? He is hated by the fanbase, but it seems to have eased a bit with recent success.

    Considering his season ticket base is heavy on Washington bigshots and folks in outer Greater DC (Price Williams and Loundon Counties, to name two, are more conservative than the District and its immediate neighbors), I’d say he’s very much sensitive to local backlash.

    I think his “NEVER” statement was for the benefit of the local fans, and not necessarily how he truly felt.

    The font (Opening Series, Sydney, Australia, 2014) and baseball look awkwardly distorted. But maybe it’s my eyes playing tricks on me. I’d recreate it, at least the bottom half, if I had the time. But if anyone out there is willing, the font in question is called “Brothers.”

    Even though I’ve never been a fan of green-and-gold together, I wish they had used green rather than red for the back of the banner; then it would make more use of the two colors that Australia uses for most of its international sports teams.

    The four year 2000-2004 gap in the Japan openers was not planned. The 2003 series was cancelled when the war in Iraq began.

    There was also a Rockies/Padres mid-season series in Monterrey Mexico. I think that was in 1998.

    Yeah, but that’s not overseas; it’s just on foreign soil (which, of course, is also the case for all the games played in Toronto and Montreal).

    Toronto and Montreal are not “foreign” soil. If the teams are based in Canada, then no game played in Canada can be considered “foreign soil”. The games played in Mexico — and didn’t the Mets also play some? — were in a country which no major league teams called home.

    (Now if a National League team played a game in Canada, maybe it would, since there’s only one team in Canada now, and it’s an AL team.)

    It’s more like your ex-wife and her new husband driving past your house in their new Porsche, just to make you feel bad.

    If I were a Montrealer, I’d stay far, far away from those games.

    Usually I try to stay away from the Redskins name debate, because whenever I wade into it, no matter how even-handed I try to be, I always get treated to a huge lovin’ spoonful of aggressive idiocy. To wit, this little nugget I got treated to this morning on another blog:

    Redskin was a term first used to describe Native Americans by….wait for this…Native Americans. That’s right, they used it to distinguish themselves from the white settlers. Nothing offensive about it at all, it was a term they coined.

    Right. Native Americans “coined” the “term.” In the 17th century. In English.

    @The Jeff,

    That lengthy, detailed and informative article is a far cry from the simple, conclusory statement that American Indians “coined” the “term” in the 17th century.

    It’s one thing to say that 17th-century (or 18th- or 19th-century) Indians had and used words and expressions relating to skin color, or describing/identifying their own skin color as “red,” to distinguish themselves from European settlers. It’s quite another to claim that 17th-century native peoples “coined” a term in modern English.

    no matter how even-handed I try to be, I always get treated to a huge lovin’ spoonful of aggressive idiocy.

    Must be hard, always being a victim.

    I mean, sure, that’s relevant, but language evolves. Like, if a bunch of black ballplayers didn’t see opportunities in the Major Leagues and formed a league in response, I’m pretty sure it won’t be called the Negro Leagues.

    Well, that’s kind of the point, though, isn’t it? This person’s main contention was that since the word was once used in an inoffensive way, and/or has an inoffensive origin, it therefore cannot under any circumstances, or at any subsequent time, be considered offensive by anyone. But simply stating that a word is not offensive doesn’t mean it’s not offensive. I don’t think a word can be objectively or empirically offensive or inoffensive; it depends on how, why, and yes, by whom it’s being used, and its effect on the listener.

    By way of example, the word “colored” is not inherently offensive; linguistically speaking, “colored” should be less offensive than “black” because the latter implies irreconcilable oppositeness, whereas the former only implies difference. Yet today we’re more comfortable saying “black” than “colored” because of, inter alia, the legacy of Jim Crow (and perhaps, Archie Bunker). Practically no one uses the phrase “colored people” anymore — not even the NAACP, for whom it’s part of their name — and anyone who does is immediately perceived to be a bigot or a racist.

    Your point is taken about the victimization language, and I didn’t mean for it to come across that way; the observation wasn’t meant to be about me. Nevertheless, I’ve complained a lot in recent years about expressions that evince self-congratulation and resentment coming from a certain political cohort, and I should be more mindful of that and more careful about doing the same.

    First off, apology to you and Paul – that first paragraph was unnecessary and uncalled for.

    Second, would it help if I told you that I don’t think “Redskins” is, at least on its face, racist? I don’t think either the name or Indian imagery in general is necessarily offensive. It’s more that as a culture, we’ve decided not to refer to people as “redskin”. “negro” or “coed”.

    And yeah, NAACP’s full name is an anachronism, but you know, the “CP” part is self-referential and they rarely refer to the organization by its full name. Plus, unlike “Redskins”, the backwardness of the “Colored People” in the name serves a purpose by calling back to the organization’s founding.

    So I don’t think anyone is necessarily racist for wanting to keep the Redskins name. But I don’t think anyone honestly believes it’s about “pride” or “respect” either. It’s tribalism and nostalgia for its own sake.

    I don’t know that the word “redskin” is inherently or empirically “racist” or not, and I don’t particularly care whether anyone thinks it is or it isn’t. But I’m not willing to go so far as to say that it cannot be, or that it must be.

    I studied the Harjo litigation in law school. I understand the argument that the term, to most people, in modern times, refers to nothing other than the football team. People hear the word and that’s what they think of, automatically, almost without exception. And I’m fine with that. If they want to keep it for that reason, fine. I also wouldn’t object if they want to change it. Keeping it or changing it won’t affect my life one iota.

    I guess what bothers me is the idea that anyone who is not offended by it, particularly anyone who is not an Indian, would somehow be harmed by the team deciding to change it. The phrase “political correctness” has become an empty expression of generalized resentment, an attempt on the part of the user, who typically has never been a victim of racism, bigotry, discrimination, &c., to make himself out to be more of a victim than the actual victim. Hence the debate becomes a Battle of the Grievances; you’re aggrieved and victimized by racism and bigotry, while I’m aggrieved and victimized by “political correctness.” Except that “political correctness” doesn’t actually harm anyone.

    Ultimately the team will do what’s best for its bottom line. The moment the continued use of the name starts hurting them at the cash register, they’ll change it. Not until then.

    Graf – I appreciate your thoughts and share agreement with most of what you have said.

    I do disagree with your characterization of “the term” Paul has ruled out-of-bounds as being empty. The term in question is not void of meaning. It has a commonly held definition, lineage, and is, notwithstanding Paul’s rule, part of our lexicon as evidenced by its application in countless academic publications – including the dictionary on your shelf.


    Not sure which “term” you’re referring to, but if you mean the one I think, I characterized it as “empty” because in my experience and observation, people who use it use it frivolously and for the reasons I described, not because they actually understand its proper meaning or application.

    I think the real question is, Exactly how many of you guys are attorneys?

    Because it seems like a lot of y’all went to law school.

    There is a funny segment in the film “Idiocrisy”, showing the name evolution of the hamburger chain Fuddrucker’s. In 150 years, it’s known as “Buttf—ers” — it’s still a family-friendly happy place, hosting kids’ birthday parties and the like. Publius, the trouble with lexicon is that it’s in constant motion, and we all have to be aware of that. The producers of ‘The Avengers’ avoided an “R” rating by having Loki call Scarlett Johannsen a “piece of quim,” which is archaic and out of use and unknown to most of the public, instead of a “c-word,” which everybody today knows is the most offensive thing you can possibly call a woman.

    Historical precedent & etymology are like “black holes in space or philosophy: Useless, but profound.” The only thing that really matters is current usage. And in current usage, as ArrScott notes, calling someone a Redskin is Fightin’ Words.

    Has anyone ever done a serious history of opposition to the Redskins nickname? I’m amazed that at the height of A.I.M., there wasn’t an organized, vociferous and pointed outcry. Why has it taken so long for this to come to a head?

    The acronym is HEADSUP? Really? Is Hasbro running the Defense Department now? Is the new uniform being designed by the Concealment And Multienvironment Operability program? Are new patches designed by the Force Logos And Graphics office?

    Actually, Australians can’t stand Fosters, you’re perpetuating stereotypes Paul. That’s like me saying you (and indeed ALL americans) love nothing more than kicking back and watching the game drinking lukewarm Budweiser

    I travel to Australia a lot for business and have never seen Aussies drinking Foster’s. SOme of the popular brands are Victoria Bitter, XXXX (Four X) and Carlton Draught. Also Cooper’s Brewery varieties are quite popular as well. Plus there a LOT of microbrews. As an Aussie i work with told me, Aussies don’t drink Foster’s they just sell it to Americans.

    you’re perpetuating stereotypes, Paul

    Really? Ya think? Like when I use a photo of koala bear and invoke terms like “Mate” and “Down Under”?

    Do tell.

    Americans can’t stand warm beer. Oh, we’ll drink it if that’s the only choice, but we can’t stand it!!

    That is true. Shouldn’t the stereotype be beer so bad that it’s only drinkable when it’s so cold it freezes the taste buds? And look, the picture turns blue to let you know it’s too cold to taste!

    Warm beer is an English Stereotype, if our beer advertisements are an indication of anything its that we love our beer cold.

    “Cold” for an English ale is warm for an American mass-market adjunct lager. You get much above 38 degrees F, and even the happiest Coors drinker will start to notice that his beer tastes vaguely of rotting organic matter. Whereas below about 46 degrees F, and good ale starts to lose flavor. A 48 degree glass of English bitter is still cold – stick your finger in the glass, and your digit will be numb within five minutes – but much it’s warmer than American macro lager can stand.

    I’ll take your word for it, but that doesn’t mean that the stereotype doesn’t exist.

    I was correcting the original post, where the commenter suggested that Americans like lukewarm beer, the correct stereotype is that the English drink warm beer. Even though, as you point out, their “warm” is still cold.

    It’s a stereotype most of the time its either not true or greatly exaggerated, so rightfully or not, the perception is that the English like their beer warm.

    “… Iowa State will be wearing its totally gorgeous throwbacks this weekend.”

    Throwbacks? Really. Yes, they are gorgeous except for the sickening flaw…maybe someone can tell me why they are wearing white cleats?! Scroll down to the shot of the 4 players in this link;

    Looks like black cleats to me. So per usual, this is not really a true “throwback”. How about if we are going to do throwback games, we do it ALL the way, not half ass.

    And for that matter, put sleeves back on the jerseys. And the uniforms should be made of wool and canvas. And use leather helmets. And beer should cost a nickel. And the ref should fire a real pistol at the end of each quarter. And no black players. And, and, and…..

    Dude, chill. No throwback outfit is 100% perfect. They’re still doing a really good job with this one.

    Nickel beers? At the Iowa State-iowa game?? For a 5pm kickoff??? No fan would make it to halftime. Hell, hawk fans wouldn’t even make it to kickoff.

    In all seriousness, I love these throwbacks; and even if I didn’t, the continuous efforts to honor Jack Trice makes me proud to be a ‘Clone.

    Hi Paul, it’s not about chilling out. I get it, it’s a uniform. We aren’t curing cancer here. I’m not going to go postal on anyone because of the white cleats. But, you get as crazed as I do about this stuff. I love that about you and the site. What I’m saying is, that if teams are going to do “throwbacks”, then do throwbacks. Pay attention to the details. The ISU throwback is actually awesome! But, the white cleats ruin it. And I mean ruin it. It looks stupid with the white cleats. The Steelers do this too. They do their bumblebee throwbacks and slap the white cleats on. Stupid. It looks dumb. It ruins the look. It’s the details. Kind of like how you like the blousing on baseball pants and actually wearing a stirrup vs. a sock that looks like a stirrup. I’m just as anal when it comes to football cleats. I am in LOVE with USC again! Black cleats, white laces, white socks. As you said in your ticker, “as it should be.” Cheers! Here’s to hoping ISU gets the black cleats out on Saturday. -Hoolie

    Ah, and their hat is made in the USA, not China! Perhaps this varies by team? I looked at three teams’ caps, and they were all made in China, so I assumed that was the case for all 30 teams. If anyone has, um, more time than I do and would like to give us a team-by-team rundown of these caps’ country of origin, feel free.

    Why is it that every cap besides the Blue Jays who play in Canada at that are made in China but they get theirs made in the USA?

    So I check all the caps for every ball club- VERY interesting results
    Baltimore- China
    Boston- China
    Chicago WS-China
    Cleveland Block C- China
    Detroit- China
    Houston- China
    KC- China
    Angels with GOLD Halo- China
    Minnesota- China
    NY Yankees- China
    Oakland- China
    Seattle- China
    Tampa Bay- China
    Texas- China
    Toronto- USA
    Arizona- China
    Atlanta which has both home and away- China
    Chicago Cubs- China
    Cincinnati- China
    Colorado with 3 caps- all China
    LA Dodgers- China
    Miami- Black Cap- Columbia- Orange Cap in one size- China
    Milwaukee- Ball in glove one size- China and Regular- China
    NY Mets- China
    Philadelphia- Home and Alt- China
    Pittsburgh- China
    San Diego- China
    San Fran- Home and Alt- China
    St. Louis- Home and Alt- China
    Washington- China

    Looking back at past matchups, I have to deduct points for inconsistencies – Mexico has worn black and USA has worn red recently.

    But US beating Mexico 2-0 in Columbus and looking good has become a nice quadrennial tradition.

    You think the Brazilians ever wear shirts that say “QUALIFICADO”?

    Ah, that’s a mean spirited comment. I’m glad for the USA, even though getting giddy about making the cut makes us seem like a small, landlocked Balkan state.

    See, still mean spirited. At least I don’t have chlamydia.

    I’m with you Cort. Seems weird for a country as large and athletically successful as ours to wear t-shirts celebrating making the cut for any tournament, especially one with a 32 team field. I could see making a big deal if the tournament only featured the top 8 teams in the world, but 32. . . a little over the top.

    But we’re also the same Country that sells all kinds of hats and shirts for making the NCAA Tournament every March-ish. And that’s a tournament that has expanded to 873,492 teams being included. So why not? Plus this shirt has a Swoosh on it, reason enough to be sold.

    Nike will make a shirt for anything, so I don’t blame US Soccer. But it does rub me the wrong way too. A single blown call in the 2002 quarterfinal against Germany kept Team USA out of the World Cup final game* and a second-place finish, and now 12 years later we’re supposed to celebrate with new shirts that we’re in the top 32?

    *Assuming USA would have defeated South Korea in the semi, which it would have.

    I graduated from James Madison High School in Vienna, Va. They have used the original Atlanta Falcons logo off and on for at least 30 years.

    When I was a student, the helmet was black with red Philadelphia Eagles wings (1970s-1990s version) with a white outline.

    Madison teams are nicknamed the Warhawks which makes as much sense as the Richmond Unionists or the New England Redcoats.

    “When I was a student, the helmet was black with red Philadelphia Eagles wings (1970s-1990s version) with a white outline.”

    North Catholic HS (Phila. PA) football would have looked great if they had done this instead of ripping off the Atlanta NFL team’s look for much of the ’70’s; they revivied the use of the logo in ’09 right before they closed their doors for good.

    I’m sure it has been mentioned here before, however, does anyone have info or a link that details the schedule of NFL teams wearing their throwbacks this season?

    When I first saw this it made sense to me that it had to be covered not due to a logo but due to a rule that I had to follow myself. In high school 10 years ago I had a heavy duty knee brace after ACL surgery and it was stated “any necessary medical equipment that can be covered by a team enforced part of the uniform must be so.” We wore long socks and the entire leg was normally covered so the brace had to be as well. Obviously all NFL teams wear long socks (or what they pass off as socks) and I figured if it was a standing rule in high school a decade ago, surely the NFL would cover their bases on the topic as well.

    This rule would also have explained why JJ Watt does not have to cover his, as several people in the comments section of the article stated, but apparently the league has no such policy due to their apology.

    Nice little detail at the end of ESPN’s coverage of last night’s USMNT win over Mexico:

    (US head coach Jurgen) Klinsmann won the World Cup as a player with Germany in 1990 and coached his native country to the 2006 semifinals. He’s lived in California for 15 years and understands the accomplishment.

    As he spoke during his postgame news conference, he had a Starbucks cup in front of him, presumably filled with champagne.

    “It’s not Aquafina,” he said, laughing.

    Uh, oh. I don’t know who’s going to be angrier at Klinsmann – Starbucks, Aquafina or Korbel…

    “We do not deserve to be called redskins,” the Oneida leader says in the ad. “We deserve to be treated as what we are – Americans.”

    Hey, how about “Washington Americans” as a team name? It beats “Washington Crooked Politicians”.

    And it matches the nicknames of the Nationals, Capitals, and United. Also, it would be a poke at the rival Cowboys, with their whole “America’s team” schtick.

    Plus, I defy anyone, no matter how devoted to the Redskins name, to protest against the Americans. (Similarly, I’ve been trying to persuade DC statehood advocates to amend their proposed statehood constitution to enter the union as the state of Reagan. And then dare to Congress vote against naming an entire state after the Gipper!)

    The only problem: Does burgundy and gold still work for the Americans?

    “‘Burgundy and gold’ represent the blood and treasure our selfless patriots have spent in defense of American Freedom. And like America throughout her glorious history, I can promise you that this team will have the strongest of defenses!”

    You can spin anything.

    I’m speechless. That honestly almost makes me want to stand up and sing the Battle Hymn of the Republic. Yes, you can spin anything, but that’s some prime spin right there. Someone oughta write that up and send it to Mr. Snyder.

    How about the Strawmen…like Ray Halbritter’s statements?
    Does the Redskins organization under Snyder’s ownership go around calling members of the Oneida Nation or any other American Indian tribe ‘redskins’?
    The proper noun “Redskins” as used by the ‘Washington NFL franchise’, Goodell and the NFL is directed solely at the team, its’ players, and football team-related operations.
    I’d like to ask Halbritter how the Oneida Nation of NY (the only nation for whom he speaks for?)is not being treated as Americans. Seems they got better than average treatment when it came to the issuing of upstate NY casino licenses…much to the dismay of the Cayuga Nation.

    Paul, just to let you know the ticker divided by sports is great. I still look over the sports I don’t usually follow anyway in case there’s something interesting. Where this is really helpful is that previously I would read the entire ticker and have several items I wanted to comment on. I would post my first comment, then go scrolling back through a long ticker trying to find the other items I was interested in, and sometimes had to scroll several times to find them. This way, after posting a hockey comment, I remember that I wanted to post about a baseball item and now I can zip right back up to the baseball section and find it quickly. So yeah, it’s working well…


    FWIW, the football field at ODU’s Stadium (I’m still calling it Foreman Field) has CUSA logos on it. As well, the field had CAA logos on it for the two years before the football team became a CAA member. Having said that, while the football team was/is an independent during these years, all of its other sports teams were part of CAA, and most of their sports teams are currently part of CUSA…

    Late, but: I loved the Mullins stuff yesterday. Sports cartooning, like comic strips, have been made less meaningful and readable for some years by the incredible shrinking newspaper, even going to back when print papers made money. Maybe the internet will help now.

    I’m dating myself, but comic strips used to have four panels, remember?

    Totally off thread, but: Eucalyptus?

    I was reading an old National Geographic (for the pictures of the uniforms, honest) and in an article about koalas it mentioned how their every fiber smells of the stuff when they’re autopsied.

    Describing the choice by MLB teams to acknowledge 9/11 as “pandering” is somewhere between insensitive and insulting. Come one Paul, I thought you were better than that.

    I think defaulting to nationalism/patriotism and making it more about the country rather than the people lost is how I see the pandering. And just the national anthem is good enough, you need to have “god bless america” in there too.

    I meant to say the national anthem is seen as not good enough, in that you need an extra patriotic song in there to prove how much we love ‘merica

    I think defaulting to nationalism/patriotism and making it more about the country rather than the people lost is how I see the pandering.


    It’s not a holiday, and it’s not a day for rah-rah “U! S! A!”-isms. It’s a day of mourning. Good day for a black armband and/or a moment of silence; bad day for the flag (which, if anything, should be at half-mast, not slapped on a cap).

    You’re right that the season opened in Japan in ’00, ’04, ’08 and ’12, but those weren’t the only times MLB has opened overseas — they did in Mexico in ’99 and Puerto Rico in ’01.

    Obviously, you are correct about that. All I wanted to point out is that MLB has begun its season in political entities other than those in which it normally holds its games other than Japan, which I don’t think was reflected in your original statement. I don’t mean to wrangle over the exact definition of “overseas” but it’s my understanding that it doesn’t necessarily mean literally “over seas” in most contexts, it usually implies “any other country” (than the U.S. or Canada in this case).

    Well, there’s actually been a finite number of games played in Toronto and Montreal, so that’s not exactly countless…

    As long as we’re counting games outside continental north America, don’t forget that the Expos played a total of 44 home games in Puerto Rico (Hiram Bithorn Stadium) in 2003-2004. They weren’t season opening games obviously but they were MLB’s biggest “offshore” venture.

    Did anyone else looked at the zoomed in picture of the flag patch on the 9/11 MLB hats and see how horrible the stitching is? The stripes are all zig-zagged, and the stars aren’t even stars. Terrible.

    Yet another reason that 47 year old men should not be wearing sports apparel in public.

    Also, his name is Nardeo, but in the photo, it looks like “Narded”, which somehow makes the whole thing so much creepier.

    That’s embarrassing. I can’t imagine what its like to be caught wearing a Leafs jersey in public.

    Yesterday the Falcons posted typical opening week at home stuff including a post saying “Cheerleaders Gear Up For Home Opener” with a slideshow I of course had to force myself to go through. I know I’ve been reading Uni Watch way too long when my thoughts were: “GD I want her….. SOCKS…” LOL

    Charlie Pierce also used these names to denote Washington’s football team: “Ethnic Degradations”; “Inhumane Glibness”; and “Unconscionable Slurs”. I love Charlie Pierce.

    Am I the only one who thinks that if Dan Snyder had a better PR campaign for the name, this wouldn’t be an issue?

    Ex. Taking money from the proceeds and donating to local tribes. Getting permission from local tribes leaders on the name. Setting up a museum at the stadium that honors local tribes. Creating schools and hospitals with the proceeds. Actually helping tribes rather than insuring they’re not insulted.

    The reason so many Native Americans don’t care about this issue is they are dealing with real issues.

    Rather than forcing a name change, why not force Snyder to pay a percentage of merchandise to the tribes in exchange for the name? Build schools, hospitals and roads for tribes in and around the DC area. Isn’t that far better than eliminating a name? There is a way better solution here nobody is talking about.

    The anti-Redskins PR/media campaign could be working to Snyder’s financial and market advantages. There’s no measure to quantify my feeling (then again, feelings are at the heart of this matter), but there may be a growing number of non-Redskins fans who have become Redskins supporters nonetheless because of this name-change campaign, resulting in more Redskins merchandise sales which is good for the Redskins individually and the NFL collectively (out of whose share of the merchandise cut should the “schools, hospitals and roads” come from? To limit access to them for exclusive use by American Indians would be discriminatory, right?)
    As far as Indian-centric philanthropic ventures go, IIRC there’s no Indian tribes per se in DC proper; Snyder has donated a lot of cash/time/influence/stuff to those in need in DC, MD and VA.
    No tribe can claim ownership of the term redskin (a term they would rather not be used by anyone, even those of American Indian descent?) or the proper noun Redskins, so Snyder doesn’t owe anybody one *ahem* red cent for the trademark he paid so much to acquire.

    Reds and Cubs did NOT wear their respective “American Flag” caps on 9/11. Did any other teams just wear their usual road / home cap?

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