Today is sort of a minor holiday for me: the reveal of this year’s slate of Special Events caps and jerseys!
Every year MLB produces a series of caps and uniforms to be worn on holidays (and now, holiday weekends). The tradition first started with 4th of July and has now expanded to holidays such as Memorial Day, Mother’s and Father’s Day, and a new day you’ll recognize that will be celebrated in a new way. Let’s dive in, shall we?
Jackie Robinson Day
Celebrated league-wide on April 15th, Jackie Robinson day celebrates one of baseball’s pioneering players; along with Larry Doby in the AL, Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier on April 15th, 1947.
MLB used to celebrate the day by having all players don Jackie’s #42; this year will have a markedly different look. #42 patches will adorn on-field caps, jerseys, and socks. There will more than likely be other details to look for on the day as well alongside the league-wide donning of Jackie’s number.
Starting in 2016, the Mother’s Day caps have been some of the brightest and most colorful of the season’s Special Events caps and this year’s is no different. This year’s iteration will differ from previous season’s offerings and include team colors (on the brim and logo) alongside a very bright pink crown and hot pink logo details. Caps will feature the hot pink in various ways; this Orioles example is one of the more extreme looks. At first blush (pun intended) the material appears to be either heather or the spandex-like material a la last year’s cap.
The jerseys themselves are a refreshing look from previous seasons as well: only a pink ribbon will be featured on the standard color jerseys.
This year’s Memorial Day look is a bit of a departure from previous seasons’ looks. While camouflage will still be in play for the cap, its use will only be in a dark sublimation on the crown. The five stars (one for each branch of the military) motif will remain from last year’s caps though these stars appear to be stitched rather than a glued rubber patch. A plain olive brim (which doesn’t look like last year’s ripstop material) completes the cap.
The jerseys will resemble last year’s look with team’s standard template color replaced with olive.
One of the most popular Special Events caps of the year will maintain the same motif as the Mother’s Day caps with light blue making up the crown. Departing from the Mother’s Day caps is the color use on the brim; many teams are going with either a navy or blue for the brim even if their team’s color palette doesn’t feature blue. Some teams (A’s, Angels) will utilize their own team color on the brim and logos.
Team jerseys will also be subdued and only feature a blue ribbon. Why a basic look this year? It could be due to a change in jersey manufacturer: you might recall that Under Armor will take over manufacturing of MLB jersey and uniform outfitting from Majestic. The caps won’t change though; New Era will still make the on-field cap.
4th Of July
The 4th of July caps are absolute lookers this year compared to the rather unextraordinary looks of years past. This year will also mark 10 years since the first Stars & Stripes caps saw their way onto the baseball diamond:
The American flag-embroidered logos are nothing new for the cap community; several designs featuring the special embroidery have already hit stores in various iterations. I for one am happy to see embroidery back on the 4th of July cap after last year’s glued-on logo.
Another feature on the cap is the addition of the NL (or AL) shield on the side, further mimicking Lids’ Ultimate Patch collection series of caps. Better still is the underbrim design which gets a big thumbs up from this cap collector:
It appears the sweatband from last year’s cap will carry over save for Toronto’s version (I can’t answer why they didn’t go with “Oh, Canada” either). A very nice addition indeed to an overall great looking cap for the nation’s birthday...
Except this detail. Oops?
MLB's new Independence Day caps have "We the People" underbrim. Nice idea, but Independence Day celebrates the ratification of the Declaration of Independence, while "We the People" is from the preamble to the Constitution (ratified 12 yrs after Declaration). Bad civics. pic.twitter.com/7Jqse81ogK— Paul Lukas (@UniWatch) March 19, 2018
Each team will get their choice of navy or red caps; the Padres will sport navy.
The jerseys will look much the same as they always have with either a starry red or navy insert in lieu of team colors.
Here’s a look at the whole lineup:
You can expect to hear more from me when the All-Star Game and Home Run Derby/Media designs arrive. What do you think of this year’s Special Events caps and jerseys? Will you save your money or plunk some down on these caps?
My thanks once again and as always to the excellent work of Chris Creamer over at Sportslogos.net. I highly suggest giving his article a read if you want to check out other team’s designs, on-field socks, and more.