One of the first things that come to mind when picturing a baseball player is the uniforms. There’s something about them that make fans love, admire, or dislike the team’s caps, logos and overall look.
Some teams stick to a simple, sleek, and clean design while others made too many changes, or they just had too many alternate jerseys. Most major league teams have a proper uniform set, making this a tightly bunched list.
New York Giants
The 1905 Giants created a new uniform just for the World Series. The uniform was in all black everything with the NY on the chest. It shows some creativity as it marks the first time an alternate jersey was worn in the history of baseball.
A switch up in uniforms would be enough for the team to take home the championship title in five games. The Giants would continue to wear their black World Series uniform the following season.
New York Giants
The 1906 Giants were coming off their first World Series victory. They wanted everyone to be know whenever they stepped onto the field. The Giants chose to change their uniform by branding in the words World Champions across the chest.
That may have been a response from their management’s disdain for the American League. After they boycotting the Fall Classic in 1904, the 1905 team made sure everybody knew who the best team in baseball was.
New York Highlanders
The team would be given the nickname Highlanders since they played their games at one of the highest points in Manhattan, Hilltop Park. The team dawned half-button down collared jerseys which were standard during that time.
But, what really stands out the most is the classic lettering and spacing of the NY across the front. The uniform holds a special place in history as it was worn by New York’s first American League club, officially becoming the Yankees in 1913.
There’s no denying that the Chicago Cubs have so many great uniforms in their history. Although the familiar Cubs home white pinstripes are iconic, we’ll have to back to 1909. This team was just coming off their third consecutive World Series, but the team is credited for one thing. T
hey were one of the first Major League teams to introduce a pinstripe uniform during the 1907. Two years later, they upgraded with a cadet style collar and “Chicago” down the front.
New York Yankees
Over the past hundred years of Yankee tradition, one thing has remained the same: the white pinstripe Yankee uniform. This uniform actually pre-dates even the team name, as it was first introduced on Opening Day 1912 when the team was known as the Highlanders.
The interlocking NY had first been introduced to the sleeve of the team’s jerseys in 1909. Three years later, it was moved to the chest and for the first time ever, it paired with the iconic pinstripes.
In baseball’s early days, teams didn’t have official names. Brooklyn’s team began as the Bridegrooms, the Superbas, followed by the Trolley Dodgers in 1911. In any case, the 1916 uniform of the Robins was unique.
Not only did it feature vertical and horizontal lines, but it created a squared plaid style pattern that was worn by the New York Giants that same season. Brooklyn would win the pennant that year, but lost in the World Series to Babe Ruth and the Boston Red Sox.
Chicago White Sox
In 1917, Chicago’s regular season uniforms featured a large S with a small o and x logo on the chest. Plus, the American flag was on the sleeve as an acknowledgment of World War I.
During the World Series, the team sported a solid white uniform with the addition of the star-spangled patriotic version of the team logo. The Sox would win the World Series that fall, just two years before they were involved in the infamous Black Sox scandal.
St. Louis Cardinals
The 1926 team wore uniforms similar to the ones they wear today. The two birds on a bat logo was still there across the chest, but pinstripes were added to the grey and road uniform.
After they won the World Series, they modified their jerseys the following season. There was only one bird on the chest because the words “World Champions” was surrounded on the logo. St. Louis were the first team to incorporate that title into their already existing logo and uniform.
The 1995 Dodgers were the only team to win a World Series in Brooklyn. In that same season, the team’s uniform was introduced in 1952 when it became the first to ever feature the player’s number on the front of the jersey.
The iconic look remained the same until Los Angeles was added to the chest in 1952. One player that comes to mind is Jackie Robinson’s number 42. That was proudly worn and the number would forever be retired throughout baseball.
The Pittsburgh Pirates had some great black and yellow uniforms throughout the seventies. But, during the 1977-1979 seasons, this was the period when the team introduced a pinstripe home uniform.
The team had six uniforms looks going on during the three year stretch. The team interchanged three different style jerseys with three different colors of pants. All white pinstripes were worn at home games, and an all-yellow uniform was worn at both home and away games during those years.
We’ll give the benefit of the doubt to the Diamondbacks for having one improvement on their jerseys. The wordmark on their current uniform is better than those from 2007-2015. Plus, they got rid of the gonzo pants innovation from 2016.
But, having the worst uniforms in the majors is nothing new for the team, and really more of a Diamondbacks tradition. It’s pretty easy to see why these uniforms belong in the desert.
The M’s have had the same look since 1993. However, after a quarter of a century, their uniforms are becoming a tad bit out-dated. The little tweaks haven’t helped much, and like many teams, the Mariners have become overrun with their alternates.
The Sunday home-game cream alternates are sharp since they’re a nod to the old days. The Friday home alternates are seafoam green, and there’s even a fifth jersey and cap to add to the team’s collection.
There’s a total lack of identity being shown by the team’s primary look, and it really makes you feel for the sports fans of San Diego. Their current jerseys are as amusing as a bag of flour. On the road, they have just one alternative, the generic “SD.” At home, they have four different ones, including their Friday night brown-and-yellow throwbacks.
Seriously though, the Padres should revert to the brown and yellow color scheme, maybe they’ll win something for once!
It was awesome to see the Astros bring back the classic orange and navy cap in 2013. However, it’s the unnecessary details they added in that are in question, such as the shading on the star and gray beveling on the “H.” What’s even more disappointing is that the uniforms are extremely generic.
All they did was add piping and a lower left number to the team’s original road uniforms. Wearing an alternative based on their batting practice uniform’s didn’t help much.
Like the M’s, the Rockies look also dates back to 1993. Colorado’s never really had a full re-design and they’re still wearing the same basic home uniforms. But, they did make one welcoming change when they standardized their shade of purple by brightening it so it didn’t look blue.
Overall, the purple and black are not the best color combination. They can’t seem to find the right balance between the two.
Before 2015, the Twins had one of the best uniforms in all of baseball. After 2015, they dropped the pinstripes from their home uniform and added gold drop-shadow to the wordmark. Plus, they added a gold outline to the “TC” on their home cap.
However, things got worse the following year. The team added a gold-accented red alternative home jersey. But, things are less problematic on the road when they were their navy alternates.
The Brewers’ current design dates back to 2000. Still, every Brewers design that isn’t their infamous ball-in-glove logo suffers from the absence of the logo. The team started to wear those throwbacks in 2006, and the ball-in-glove logo has taken on increasing prominence in their uniform set ever since.
The unfortunate side of the return of the ball-in-glove is that the Brewers are now a team with two incompatible logos.
The Nationals have a navy stars-and-stripes alternate they wear with a navy stars-and-stripes cap. Those are on top of their usual home whites, road grays, and red alternate jerseys. But, in 2018, they added a sixth jersey, a navy alternate with “Nationals” across the front.
Altogether, the Nationals’ uniform set has too many options. With six jerseys and five caps, at least it sticks to a single red-white-and-navy color scheme that’s as patriotic as it gets.
We’ll have to go back to 1948 for this one. That’s when the team first adopted the black and gold of the city’s flag. Their primary home and road uniforms, the white and grey, are instant classics. The team even wear throwback uniforms on their Sunday home games, which have been the bumblebee yellow pullovers.
Their primary jerseys are an improvement over the unwelcome splash of red from the bandana on the pirate, which is really just a reminder of past mistakes.
Like the Nationals, the Rangers have a uniform set that lacks an identity. Every jersey says “Texas” across the front in some combination of the red, white, and blue. However, the Rangers can’t seem to commit to blue as their primary color.
They only wear red at home, but in 2018, they wore red caps 36 times. If it were up to me, they should ditch the red caps and jerseys and make a cool blue alternate.
The Phillies’ primary home and road uniforms haven’t been changed up since 1992. With the number and name font, it’s identical both at home and on the road, which feels a bit outdated.
It’s a classic look, but the cream alternate look was introduced in 2008 and worn sparingly. Then, they complicated things with their throwbacks of the 1973-88 powder blues. Worst of all, that’s a road uniform, but the Phillies are wearing the throwback at home.
The A’s certainly have nice things going on in their uniform set. But, the issue is this, they have too many of them. Green and gold is an excellent color scheme, just look at the success of the Green Bay Packers.
The A’s primary home whites and road grays are classics that go back to 1987. Their three alternates, and five overall jerseys, are too many, and could really use a tweak.
Tampa Bay Rays
It’s no surprise that the Rays like to keep it simple. They wear white at home, the powder blue on Sundays, gray on the road, and a navy alternate worn from time-to-time. Overall, Tampa Bay has a nice uniform set, even if it’s a bit dull to some.
However, hey debuted their best jerseys during their worst-to-first pennant-winning season of 2008, the same year the franchise had the most success since forever.
While we haven’t seen the team dawn their new uniforms, this a perfect spot for them. When it comes to the blue alternate, there’s not much to think about, which makes it empty up front. But, from looking at their new set, it’s a significant improvement over the nightmare ones they wore.
They just need to do something about the black-on-black text when it comes to the caps and black alternates.
Kansas City Royals
Like the A’s, the Royals have a great look burdened with too many alternates. In the Royals’ case, they have a powder-blue home alternate and a royal-blue road alternate. Don’t forget the version of their home uniform with trimmed gold after winning the World Series in 2015.
None of these look bad, they’re just used in moderation, minus the road blue. The powder blues with a white “Royals” outlined isn’t appealing.
Outside of the Yankees, the Tigers are the only other team without an alternate jersey. The basic design of the Tigers’ home jersey has been the same for all but one season since 1934. There’s a ton of tradition here, but one regrettable change came in 2018.
They enlarged the “D” on their home and road caps then decided on the difference between the cap “D” and the jersey “D.”
San Francisco Giants
The Giants have three alternates that keep their classic look. However, they only have two alternates which are solid colors. The Giants limit the gray “SF” alternates to Sundays, and they wear an orange alternate at home on Fridays. And, they wore a black alternate six times in 2016.
Meanwhile, their home and road jerseys are small variations of the team’s 1958 set. The road jersey was better with orange black piping around the collar.
After the 2018 season, the Chief Wahoo logo has been finally retired. Cleveland has replaced him on their caps with their red block “C.” They also have made a couple of additional tweaks to their uniform set.
They’ve discontinued the red cap and introduced a new red home alternate jersey. They converted their navy alternate into a road-only jersey. It’ll be exciting to see these changes unfold, that’s for sure.
The O’s share more than just a color scheme with the Giants. Despite both clubs reverting back to classic looks, the O’s wear their black jerseys and black O’s caps on Fridays. That leaves exposure for their home whites with white-front caps, and road grays with black-crowned caps.
Also, the word mark of “Orioles”, including their home whites, is too large to even be on a jersey, to begin with.
The Reds have 15 throwbacks planned for 2019 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the 1869 Red Stockings. That will complicate their uniform set in the coming season, but their jerseys are still very good.
It’s a simple wardrobe that consists of just three jerseys with a home and road cap. Now, it’s not the perfect set since the black drop shadow is a poor choice. Still, the overall design is very elegant.
Boston Red Sox
The Red Sox’ home uniform is one of the all-time classics. But, when it comes to the rest of their uniforms, there’s something very unique about them. Their navy road alternates are pleasurable, but their natural road grays are flat.
They just copied the font and color pattern of the home wordmark then put it on a blank gray jersey. Both road jerseys have the issue of the six-letter “Boston” being placed off-center out of necessity.
The tomahawk isn’t as obviously offensive as Chief Wahoo. Still, on their own merits, these are good uniforms. It’s a classic look that got updated in 1987 from a design which debuted in 1946. The basic look has been worn in all three cities the Braves have called home.
The current primary set is simple. They have just two caps and two alternate jerseys, with the tomahawk-free alternate being introduced in 2012.
New York Mets
When the Mets dropped the black for good in 2013, their uniform set improved. Essentially, what they’re wearing now is the same set they debuted in 1962. With just a few minor tweaks, they came up with a pair of royal blue alternates, one home, one road, each accompanied with an alternate cap.
Then home alternate renders “Mets” in orange outlined in white while the road alternate renders “New York” in gray outlined in orange.
Chicago White Sox
1991 was the year the White Sox went under more uniform changes than any other team. They donned a new black-and-white look, and they haven’t had a redesign since then. Their three jerseys from 1991 consist of a home pinstripe, a road gray, and a black alternate.
The only significant change was the unfortunate replacing of the white sox sleeve patch. Since 2013, they’ve made throwback alternates a standard part of their set.
The Cubs’ home pinstripes, with the bear logo on the left sleeve, are a classic. Other than special occasion uniforms, the Cubs wear their standard pinstripes for every home game. Their road uniform, with the team logo on the front of the left hip, dates back to 1997.
But, the blue alternate is a beautiful design with a bear cub crawling out of the “C.” The Cubs have one of the best-looking uniforms in baseball.
St. Louis Cardinals
Like their National League Central rivals, the Cardinals belong in the top. But, they introduced their new “victory blue” road alternates. They just never seemed to fit with the Cardinals overall look during their original run from 1976-84.
The Cardinals get credit for being the only team to have maintained its signature sock-stripe pattern through the pajama-pants era. Also, the yellow looks great, but Cardinals actually have red beaks. Sorry, Cardinals fans.
Los Angeles Angels
The Angels have a history of great uniforms, from their original halo caps to the one-year-only lower case “a.” However, the only real mishap was their Disney-era periwinkle wings design.
They have since bounced back from that garbage look by adopting their current set in time to win their first World Series in 2002. That said, they run on the red alternates quite a lot, by wearing it 92 times in 2018.
Toronto Blue Jays
From 2004-2011, the Blue Jays’ uniforms were the worst in baseball. But, their 2012 redesign is one of the best in the major leagues. Rather than replicate their championship-era look, they gave it an update on their right.
By snapping their playoff drought in 2015, and Jose Bautista’s epic bat flip, that may have made the new design iconic in its very own right. Their uniforms are the height of modern baseball design.
New York Yankees
Those home pinstripes are a classic for a reason. The Yankees have one cap, two jerseys, and no alternates. While their home uni’s are baseball’s equivalent of the little black dress, it NEVER goes out of style. And, while some fans may not like this, it looks good on just about everyone.
Or, if you don’t want to call it that, consider it as baseball’s tuxedo, making you feel like James Bond.
Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers have a redundant sleeve patch and alternative road jersey. The only difference between their “Los Angeles” roadie and their “Dodgers” alternate is the wordmark and the sleeve piping in the former. Both lack the white outline that makes the Yankee’s road uniform outdated.
But, add in the matte helmets, the white button on their caps, and the Dodgers uniform is both simple and loaded with wonderful tiny details.