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Monday Morning Uni Watch

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End of an era yesterday in Oakland, as the Chief and Raiders played what is likely to be the final NFL game to take place across an MLB infield. The Raiders’ next game in Oakland is in November (their Week Five “home game” against the Bears is in London), so their home schedule will not overlap with the A’s, even if the A’s go all the way to the seventh game of this year’s World Series.

I understand that players hate playing on baseball infields (the dirt surface is reportedly miserable), but I grew up watching NFL games on baseball diamonds, so I feel a little bit sad to see this phenomenon drawing to a close. Lots of additional photos here and here.

In other news from around the league yesterday:

• Surprising move yesterday in Green Bay, as several Packers wore captaincy patches — something they’ve previously done only in postseason games. It appears that new head coach Matt LaFleur has a different approach to this aspect of the game than his predecessor, Mike McCarthy, did.

• Speaking of the Packers, quarterback Aaron Rodgers wore a play-calling wristband. According to this article, it was the first time in his career that he wore this accessory:

• The Dolphins wore their beautiful white throwbacks:

• The Bengals went mono-black:

• The Ravens waited until their regular season home opener to bring back their old midfield logo (they had been using their helmet logo):

• Six teams wore white at home: the aforementioned Dolphins, plus the Rams, Ravens, Texans, Titans, and Washington.


Meanwhile, I’ve once again provided my picks for the week’s best- and worst-looking games over at Sports Illustrated. You can check that out here.

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ITEM! Free salty snack-themed cornhole set: Probably the strangest freebie I’ve ever received here at Uni Watch HQ showed up a few days ago, as the folks at Frito-Lay (whose official corporate name includes a hyphen, although their logo, as you can see above, does not — odd) sent me a cornhole set, complete with two boards and six bags that look like sacks of Fritos, Cheetos, and Tostitos.

Realistically, I have no use for this — no backyard, no front yard, no alleyway — so I’m going to give it away, but with a catch: If you want it, you have to come pick it up in person. It’s big (26″ x 50″ x 9″) and heavy:

You want? First person to claim it can have it, but you have to come pick it up sometime this week. Check that — already claimed! Thanks.

(Full disclosure: The cornhole set also came with several bags of chips. I’m keeping those!)

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Cap update/reminder: I thought it would be good to show our two Uni Watch cap offerings side by side — two different designs, different fabrics, different price points. That’s our Classic Cap on the left (wool, fitted or strapback, $42.99) and our new Gold Circle Cap on the right (cotton, strapback, $24.99).

Yes, they also have two different shades of green. That’s because we don’t move enough units to get a custom shade, so we have to use stock colors. (Personally, I like both of these shades of green, so I don’t mind the inconsistency.) Similarly, the cotton cap wasn’t available with a gold squatchee, but I’m fine with that too.

Anyway: The Classic Cap is available here, and the Gold Circle Cap is available here. My thanks, as always, for your consideration.

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Wrong number: Got off the subway yesterday at a stop I don’t normally use and was greeted by this quartet of derelict pay phones. I love how all four are different: One has a piece of the receiver; one has the cord but no receiver; one has no cord; and one has no phone. A variety pack!

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The Ticker
By Jamie Rathjen

Baseball News: This Twitter thread has MLB’s Joe Torre saying that the Yankees and Mets won’t be allowed to wear New York first-responder caps on Sept. 11 in the future because the league doesn’t want to determine “which tragedies qualify for special hats.” He did confirm they could wear patches, though (from @Zanerzas). … Before you criticize MLB for that, a Brooklyn city councilman has already beaten you to it after the Mets weren’t allowed to wear the hats last week (from @_Swift23). … Reader Mike Rosenberg is getting married in November, so he and his fiancée got yarmulkes with squatchees.

Football News: The Rams’ and Chargers’ new stadium already has a naming-rights advertiser (from @Cdud1970). … Syracuse retired the No. 72 jersey of LB Tim Green this weekend. Syracuse seems to distinguish between retiring jerseys and numbers, of which this was the former, meaning the number remains in circulation (from Jakob Fox). … The team of the day yesterday for Blaise D’Sylva‘s daily helmet collections happened to be Syracuse. … You can see Wade Heidt‘s Canadian college uni tracking in yesterday’s comments. … You know how QBs wear red “no contact” jerseys during practices? Back in the 1960s, Chargers coach Sid Gillman had his QBs wear red crosses.

Hockey News: Some items from the start of Canada’s Junior A season from Wade Heidt: The Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League’s Yorkton Terriers have new uniforms that are dark grey when team colors are black and orange. … The Alberta Junior Hockey League’s Calgary Canucks, whose new uniforms we had in the Ticker recently, still have royal blue helmets, even though they switched to navy blue jerseys and pants. … There was also a color-vs.-color game between the British Columbia Hockey League’s Trail Smoke Eaters (orange) and the Salmon Arm Silverbacks (black). … The BCHL champions, the Prince George Spruce Kings, also got championship rings. … New mask design for Islanders G Semyon Varlamov (from John Muir).

Basketball News: New uniforms for Washington’s women’s team, together with the men’s team, which we mentioned last week.

Soccer News: The women’s team at German club 1. FC Köln wore blue wristbands on Friday for gender equality and in memory of Iran’s Blue Girl, who died after self-immolating last week in protest at a prison sentence received for violating Iran’s ban on women attending soccer matches. … AS Roma’s women’s team also wore blue armbands during warm-ups. … Blue Girl’s favorite team, Esteghlal, wore warm-up shirts in memory of her. … Premier League team Wolverhampton Wanderers commemorated the 130th anniversary of their stadium, Molineux, on their shirts. The stadium’s first game was on Sept. 7, 1889 (from Josh Hinton). … D.C. United midfielder Ulises Segura wore a No. 32 NNOB blood shirt, instead of his No. 8, for about half the first half yesterday, but got a new shirt at halftime. … My brother Nate Rathjen says a source at USL Championship team Loudoun United told him that the team won’t wear their shirt from the league’s new collection of city-themed shirts this season, but perhaps in the first game of next season. Loudoun’s shirt is miles better than most of the others we’ve seen, but to use D.C.’s flag, instead of the flag of Loudoun County, Va., as a base doesn’t make much sense and is a massive missed opportunity. … Chelsea has worn four different goalkeeper kits in six games so far this season — “and that will be five in seven games this Tuesday,” says Denis Hurley.

Grab Bag: The Seattle Times interviewed Paul about the city’s sports uniforms. They’re also doing a Seattle uniforms bracket contest, including Washington State, which is most definitely not a Seattle school, though the paper writes about them. Meanwhle, they left out, among others, the NWSL’s Reign FC, which I find unacceptable, especially because Reign FC were mentioned in passing and weren’t just overlooked. … Walt Whitman HS in Bethesda, Md., has a lot of different logos going on (from Andrew Hoenig). … NASCAR driver Clint Bowyer made the space above the driver’s window usually that usually reserved for the driver’s name into a memorial for his grandmother (from James Gilbert). … A photo from earlier this year of Australian rules footballer Tayla Harris that went viral online and then became the basis for one of the logos for AFL Women’s is now the basis for a new statue. … Not sports-related, but interesting: the Massachusetts Turnpike, which is the portion of Interstate 90 in the state, has two different logo variations and a throwback logo (from David Sperino and John Costello).

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What Paul did last night yesterday afternoon: The only thing I miss about the old Uni Watch HQ is that I no longer have a backyard where I can grill. I’ve been going through grilling withdrawal this year, so yesterday I decided to haul a bunch of charcoal, beer, and grillables to Prospect Park, where they recently installed a set of public-use grills near the entrance closest to our house.

Marinated some chicken, invited a bunch of friends, spread out a few blankets for picnicking — perfect. Felt so good to be grilling again!

Sure beat the hell out of sitting on the sofa watching football. However you spent your Sunday, I hope it was just as good!

Comments (52)

    I too (being an old guy) will miss NFL games with baseball infields. That said, I wonder what the most famous games (Top 5 maybe) that were played with infield dirt. ?????

    The 1958 NFL Championship (the so-called “Greatest Game Ever Played”) at Yankee Stadium would likely have to be included. That being said, if you check out this YouTube video, it’s almost impossible to make out the dirt infield, as the players appear to kick up clouds of dust over the entire field. link

    Being ‘old guys’ ourselves (!!), a few friends and I were having this very discussion just this past Saturday (triggered by a newspaper article marking this Raiders-Chiefs game as the last of it’s kind)… and we came up with what we THOUGHT was a great list…

    ‘Funniest’ thing is, though, many of the absolute classic games we THOUGHT should be on our list – or, at least, the games we thought we REMEMBERED as ‘should definitely be on our list!’ (games like: “The Greatest Game Ever Played” – Giants vs. Colts, 1958 NFL Championship; “The Sea of Hands” – 1974 AFC Divisional Playoff ; “The Ghost to the Post” – 1977 AFC Divisional Playoff, “Red Right 88” – 1980 AFC Divisional Playoff), CAN”T be on that list – if you use “Actually played on a field with an exposed dirt infield” as the criteria, because…

    … it turns out (“after further review”, lol!) that while all those classic games WERE played in stadiums that doubled as both football and baseball stadiums – New York’s fabled Yankee Stadium, Oakland’s iconic Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, Baltimore’s legendary Memorial Stadium, and Cleveland’s beloved old behemoth Cleveland Stadium respectively – each of those games was ALSO played well after the baseball season had ended (December 28, 1958 for “The Greatest Game Ever Played”, December 21, 1974 for the “Sea of Hands” game, December 24, 1977 for “The Ghost to the Post” game, and January 4, 1981 for the “Red Rocket 88” game), so each of those games were actually played on fields that had already had the infields turfed over- (though you sure wouldn’t know that, watching the film of any of them, since they all ‘seemed’ to be played, at least partially, on dirt… or frozen dirt…!!!

    Crazy how the mind plays tricks on us “old” guys… ain’t it…??!!

    So… because our old, addled brains were absolutely FRIED by this point… the only game we could ‘settle on’ under the “Actually played on a field with an exposed dirt infield” criteria was “The Holy Roller” game (played on September 10, 1978 in San Diego’s San Diego Stadium*, home to both the San Diego Padres baseball team, and San Diego Chargers football team).

    *Interesting fact about “The Murph”: Though many of us “old timers” fondly remember it as “Jack Murphy Stadium”, it was actually called “San Diego Stadium” from the time it opened in 1967 until 1981, when it was re-christened as “San Diego-Jack Murphy Stadium” in honor of the long-time San Diego sports columnist, and it retained that name until 1997, when San Diego-based telecommunications equipment company Qualcomm purchased naming rights and renamed it “Qualcomm Stadium”. When those naming rights expired in 2017, the stadium was renamed “SDCCU Stadium” by new naming rights purchaser the San Diego County Credit Union…)

    There was a Dolphins/Pats game, I think it was 1994, season opener in Miami. Marino’s first game back from a torn achilles, Bledsoe and Marino both put up over 400 yards, unheard of back then, and 4 and 5 TDs respectively, with Miami winning in the end. Was an amazing game. Marlins we playing in Joe Robbie Stadium at the time.

    Actually, that was 1994. A great game, and it was played on dirt! Interesting that there was still dirt on the field in the middle of the MLB strike. Maybe they were holding out hope that they would resume playing baseball at any time??


    don’t consider myself old at 40, but I too will miss the dirt infields during baseball games. When I became cognizant of sports (not just the entirety of my lifetime, because I wasn’t a sports fan when I was 1), there were 15 MLB teams sharing a stadium with a football team who’s seasons would overlap (honorable mention being Milwaukee hosting 1 or 2 Packer games, Toronto and Montreal who didn’t have an NFL team, but shared with the Argos and Allouetts respectively) which was more than half the league. Take that and add the multipurpose stadiums that used to host both sports, but one of the teams left the stadium (RFK still hosting the Redskins, Shea Stadium after the Jets moved, The Oriels being lonesome in Memorial Stadium after the Colts skipped town and The Oakland Coliseum was left to the A’s since the Raiders by that time played in LA) and add the venerable stadiums that were never multipurpose stadiums but hosted an NFL team for a considerable time (Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park, Comiskey Park, and heck, Wrigley Field and Tiger Stadium hosted football as late as 1970 and 1975 respectively). All of that to say that baseball teams and football teams sharing a home was more of the norm when I grew up than the exception. Heck even when the National League expanded in 1993, both the Marlins and Rockies played in football stadiums. Even the baseball field I played on in Pony ball was also the league’s football field!!

    I loved it. I know the players hated it, but I used to love watching the Cubs play the Phillies at the Vet, then watch the Cowboys come to the Vet and try to guess how the football field was laid out in relation to the baseball field because it was hard to tell with all the movable stands. That and the almost non-existent yard lines due to them having to use some agent that was easy to pull back up for the Phillies games. Or that the Steelers only had a painted end zone for half the season. It was kind of fun! I went to a few football and baseball games at the Astrodome and was amazed how they made it look like a stadium for both sports. I never minded the crappy seating.

    Honorable Mention: I have no idea the game, but it was the last year the Rams played at Busch Stadium, and during the baseball season, they didn’t put the turf over the dirt cutouts, so I found it quite odd that they wouldn’t cover the dirt.

    Any game played at Memorial Stadium in Baltimore. I recall watching games on TV where it seemed the presence of grass was a pure accident.

    Semi-interesting and a big stretch…the Royals followed their KC stadium parking lot brethren into Oakland to play the A’s. So you could say the Royals-A’s game will be the last to play a baseball game right after a football to baseball field conversion.

    Hey Paul,

    When can one expect the gold circle cap to ship? I ordered one last Wednesday and there has been no update.
    I am not in a hurry, but I do to know when to generally expect things.


    Congrats Mike Rosenberg! We decided against the oy-vey button…and went with navy instead of my preferred orange, because even though orange was a wedding color, you can’t go wrong with a conservative “suit color” in that context. Orange yarmulkes would have made the ceremony look like a Philly Flyers playoff game, in retrospect. So you picked well with your charcoal!
    (Also note, I don’t recall being able to make an Expos style pinwheel yarmulke. Which would have been hilarious!)

    Thanks man.

    Ah man, Expos pinwheel kippot would have been awesome. We’re Nats fans, and getting married in DC, so it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch. She picked them out but I just couldn’t say no to getting to wear a squatchee at my wedding. Maybe I’ll find some matching stirrups to wear and not tell my fiancee until we’re at the chuppah.

    Is it just me, or does the Steelers logo on the newer style helmets appear to be a little smaller than in the past? (Smaller circumference of the circle).

    I don’t necessarily think that the Panthers need a complete overhaul. Some tweaks for sure, but the last two years of “pants roulette is ridiculous. Their best looks are White over White (I actually liked when they paired this look with the black socks instead of the blue), Black over Silver and Blue over Silver. If memory serves, they didn’t wear the silver a single time last year, instead going with a mix of the white. black, and blue pants. That blue over black is especially brutal.

    Yarmulkes with buttons have been around forever. Buttons are typically used with yarmulkes that are made of satin material. Knit, suede, and leather yarmulkes don’t have a button. Yarmulkes with an Expos-type pinwheel design are available, usually in leather or suede. Here’s website: link

    The Seattle Reign that’s mentioned in the Seattle Times article is not the soccer team, it’s the short lived women’s basketball team from the ABL.

    Yeah, I said it wasn’t the soccer team. By “mentioned in passing,” they said for the Reign basketball team “Not the soccer club — the hoops team.” Like, come on, just include the damn soccer team.

    Follow-up from a question in Sunday’s post regarding Georgia Tech’s helmets:

    “[D]oes anyone know the significance of the crown-looking decal on the back of the helmets?”
    Photo: link

    That logo is in memory of Dr. Aaron King, who passed away earlier this month. He has been the team dentist since the 1960’s.

    The logo also appears on the sideline, accompanied by his initials.

    The Raiders can pay homage to the infield dirt in Las Vegas. Just have brown coloration with their Sprint Turf field design where the infield is situated on the Oakland field.

    I’ve notice more and more local baseball fields have the brown coloration instead of actual dirt on warning tracks and the infield.

    But doesn’t that kind of defeat the purpose of the warning track? I don’t remember ever looking down to see what color the grass was, but I do remember feeling the difference as I got onto the dirt.

    The idea of a field turf colored with a brown baseball diamond is hilarious…would love for the Raiders to do that during a throwback night someday in Vegas.

    Just wondering what would happen if the Mets simply wore the first responder hats even without permission. Just do it.

    Force MLB’s hand, I can’t imagine they’d fine the team or players for doing so. There’d be so much negative press if the penalized them for a tribute to Sept 11th first responders.

    What a weak explanation from Torre.

    If your explanation is “its not a bad idea, but if we let them do it, where do you draw the line for a future tragedy”, the answer should be “let them do it and cross that bridge when we come to it”. Its the sort of explanation a grade school teacher gives.

    It pains me to say this, like almost literal, visceral pain, but Torre has a point. He’s basically invoking the ratchet effect in argument against permitting the first twist of the ratchet.

    The problem is that the ratchet already turned well past this point, on this particular instance of event commemoration, and Torre himself personally participated in that initial turn of the ratchet.

    I agree with Mr. Brashear above: This is a perfect situation for a wildcat labor action. Mets players should have worn the dang hats. Let Mets management or coaches try to scratch offending players from the lineup for the night’s game. Let league officials or umpires try to eject offending players from the field. What’s the point of belonging to a union if you’re not willing to act with even this minimal level of solidarity in the face of obviously overwhelming public support and zero meaningful potential consequences for action?

    Did the Yankees wear first responder caps in n actual game as you imply with Torre participating in that “ratchet”? I thought it was just the Mets who did so?

    The beauty of the Raiders and Chiefs crossing the dirt infield reminded me of a project I’ve messed with on and off: the perfect NFL Sunday. This Sunday had several of the elements minus snow. What would the best looking uni match-ups league-wide on one weekend? You end up with a lot of divisional games because those are great looking match-ups.

    -Chiefs at Raiders on the baseball cut-outs in the California sun.
    -Vikings at Packers which also happened yesterday (and I’m Ok with purple pants but it would be better if snowing)
    – Detroit at Bears (Lions in grey pants to downplay their recent bad choices and Chi in traditional home navy; snowing here too)
    – Washington at Cowboys with the roof open at Texas Stadium causing bad shadows.
    – Giants at Steelers (Giants with grey road pants and Steelers wearing throwback block numerals)
    – Bills at Dolphins (Bills in blue jerseys/white pants and Dolphins in throwback whites)
    – 49ers at Rams (Rams in throwback blues; more Cali sun but played in the late afternoon slot)
    – Jets at New England (yes, it will look like a USFL game; maybe snow helps)
    – Ravens at Colts (Baltimore in all whites at traditional Colts)
    – Cardinals at Seahawks (Cards in all white- best of worst and Hawks wearing grey pants to look a bit less like a high school team)
    – Saints at Chargers (NO in gold pants and white vs powder blues)
    – Bucs at Panthers (TB all white- best of bad and Carolina in traditional silver/black). (Best if played Thursday night so I forget to watch.
    – Titans at Broncos (Ten wearing light blue pants, Broncos in Navy alts)
    – Eagles at Bengals (Philly all white- best of boring and Cincy in white pants and either jersey) Put this on Monday; maybe I’ll forget to watch that too.
    – Jax at Falcons (Jags in all white to minimize and ATL in throwback blacks)
    – Browns at Texans (Clev in all white and Texans in traditional navy) Maybe there could be a Thursday double-header?

    Nothing about the current Jets or Patriots uniforms is reminiscent of anything worn by any USFL team.

    fILE UNDER SOCCER NEWS – In MLS this weekend:

    – Montreal Impact wore white at home (they normally were black and blue stripes, like Inter Milan)

    – New York City FC wore alternate gray uniforms at home (they normally wear blue).

    Your picnic looked great! I have debated hosting a grill party in Prospect, but have been wary about bringing booze because of the very large police presence in the park. (Last time I picnicked there a PD cruiser followed me onto a foot trail and parked ridiculously close by.) I couldn’t even take my bottle of booze out of my bag.

    I noticed a couple more teams went with pairing white pants with solid white socks: the Rams and Jags. The Jags were even more interesting in that they were wearing their dark jersey along with it to create a truly odd effect. Also, the Saints finally wore gold pants and looked so good and I just can’t understand why they ever wear mono black (or black pants at all for that matter).

    Eagles did as well last night.

    Ideally, the whole purpose of the white socks would be useful to defeat the leotard effect. Wear them with the colour pants. Yet, we are now getting white leotard looks. Jags looked really strange with that combo yesterday. They should have been wearing their black socks.

    It kinda stinks in the Raiders last season in Oakland, they have to play a home game in London? Who decides this?

    And the Panthers need to lose the black pants. Silver and gold helmet teams need matching pants. The white on white is ok I suppose, but all dark under a light colored helmet looks like pee wee football.

    The Ravens white jersey on purple pants was a first time ever for that uniform combo for a game played in Baltimore.

    One thing I was surprised that no one pointed out-

    When the Dolphins announced the white throwback uniforms this year, the pics showed the dreaded unitard look with the white socks that every other team with a color rush uniform has used, even if they were throwbacks (Saints, 49ers, Giants, Cowboys, Dolphins in their press release). However, yesterday the Dolphins were amazing and wore their throwback socks with the uniform instead of going full rash. This made the uniform incredible. If I’m not mistaken, this marks the first time since color rash was debuted that a team wore the entire color rash uniform with contrasting socks. I sure hope my Cowboys follow suit and break out their navy socks with their color rash uniform next Sunday.

    Also, I personally think Dallas in Navy versus Washington in white over burgundy is the best looking match-up in the NFL, followed by The Raiders in black versus the Chiefs in white over red. We got both games on the same day yesterday!

    This idea of “retiring” jerseys (but not numbers) is silly.

    I seriously doubt someone was going to be wearing Tim Green’s actual polyester/nylon piece of cloth from the 80s today. It might have lasted what, another year, two? Less?

    I feel assured my high school basketball jersey has been out or circulation for decades! No one has worn that sucker in honor of my five career points!

    MNF and this is the first time I’ve seen the Jets on TV this season. And… they’re wearing black. Horrible! I’m taking my ball and going home.

    I tried to watch but both uniforms are so bad I just couldn’t handle more than a few minutes.

    100 seasons to get to this???

    The helmets are all right. And I do like the number font. But all-Black? Ecchh.

    But it sure looks gritty. /s

    Odell Beckham Jr. just missed a bunch of plays in the Monday Night Football game because his visor was tinted–the officials noticed and kicked him out until equipment staff were able to swap it out. Clearly he failed to read Paul’s SI piece about banned equipment–even though it was inspired by him! Hey NFL stars–not reading Paul hurts your team!

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