As fans, there are some uniforms that we absolutely love. We grew up with them. We bought them in the team stores. We recognized them on TV. These uniforms were a part of the culture of the organization and were embedded in the fabric of the city.
Times have changed. Logos have changed. Uniforms have changed. While some changes are for the better, some teams moved on way too quickly from great uniforms that were unique and made their teams stand out on the field. Here is a short list of some of the uniforms that organizations should consider bringing back into the fold, even just as alternate unis.
The San Diego Padres: “The Sand” Roads
The Padres wore the sand road uniforms from 2004 until the end of the 2010 season. The Padres are an organization that are known for having unconventional jersey combinations and color schemes. This is my all-time favorite road uniform. With teams trying to make their road jerseys pop and look unique as they travel to other cities, the Padres incorporated part of their environment into theirs. They looked different from every other team on the road. Those uniforms were unique. When the Padres changed to the grey and blue road jerseys, I felt that they lost a bit of personality that they were developing with their team identity. When you look at teams like the D-Backs who made a darker grey road jersey, I think now is a great time to bring the road sands back!
The Oakland Athletics: Back in Black
The Oakland A’s first toyed with the black uniforms back in 2000 for their 30th anniversary season in Oakland. Those jerseys only lasted one season, but they returned in 2008 and are one of my personal favorites of theirs. They added a black batting helmet and hats to match their tops in 2009 and used them as their alternate home jerseys. The one issue I had with them was that they still wore green sleeves under their jerseys. If they were to bring them back with black undershirts too, they would make a sweet addition to their rotation. I think that these would look better on TV than the yellow alternates that the A’s have been wearing at home the last few seasons.
The Cleveland Indians: Sleeveless Home Uniforms
These uniforms are another personal favorite of mine. As a die-hard Indians fan, what I loved about these jerseys was that while they weren’t the main home whites, they still were enough variation that made them feel different while not being the alternate blues. They had a feel of summer baseball to them. While Chief Wahoo was on the chest, they had a script “I” hat that were so cool. As the Indians try to figure out where to go next with Chief Wahoo, bringing these back and making some alterations might help them shift away from that logo. Bringing back the script “I” hat could help smooth things over with fans who may not have embraced the block C yet.
Then New York Mets: Alternate Black and Old Home Whites
While these uniforms came with the New York Mets into their new ballpark in 2012, they were phased out in 2013. The Mets had two home white uniforms, one with pinstripes and one without. They phased out the uniform without pinstripes and have two alternate uniforms, both being blue. The Mets phased out black in their color scheme and thus and drifted away from an identity that they had created in Shea Stadium and those great Mets teams from the early and mid 2000s. Bringing these uniforms back would give them some fresh looks that offer a bit more than just the orange and blue color scheme that they have went with recently.
The Toronto Blue Jays: 2004 Home White Jersey
After winning back-to-back World Series titles, the Blue Jays struggled. The organization shifted away from their traditional uniforms to new ones in 2004 with new home whites, greys, and an alternate black.
These jerseys fit with a new reimagining of the Blue Jays organization as they attempted to redefine in the early 2000s. While the team has gone back to its classic look, throwing these back into the rotation would offer fans new alternative logos that they can purchase and would give the uniforms a more “up to date” feel than what they are wearing currently.
The Miami Marlins: Please Bring Back Anything That Isn’t What You Have Now
Okay I’ll admit it. I absolutely hate the new Miami Marlins logo and uniforms. No team in their right minds should have 5 team colors and uniform combinations that include red-orange, blue, and yellow. When the team moved to their new ballpark, they looked to re-imagine their uniforms to fit with the culture of the region. Well, for many, the new look struck the wrong cord.
The new logo has too much going on color-wise and the team has been slowly moving away from the Marlin that was on their home and road caps from the past. Because they are a younger organization (their first season was in 1993), they have struggled like other expansion franchises to find uniforms that would establish a team identity. One thing is for sure, they need to dump their new uniforms as soon as possible.