I generally don’t read sports magazines, in part because there’s plenty of sports info available on the web, and in part because I already think enough about sports as it is. So while I was aware that last week’s issue of Sports Illustrated had a bunch of Mets on the cover (I think I heard a reference to it during a Mets radio broadcast), I didn’t actually look at a copy of the magazine.
But Marc Beck and Chris Andringa did — and they didn’t like what they saw. Andringa’s gripe was with the players’ footwear — “Who wears full uniforms [for a photo shoot] and then just throws on a ratty pair of sneaks?” A fair critique, but Beck picked up on something more subtle: Look closely and it appears that several of the players were wearing heavily worn brown belts.
Some quick background: The Mets usually wear black belts. They’re supposed to wear blue belts when wearing their blue caps, and a few players follow this rule, but most of them just stick with the black belt.
So how’d the players end up wearing brown belts for the photo shoot? Most likely the shoot took place someplace other than the Mets clubhouse, and whoever provided the unis forgot to provide belts. So the players probably just wore the belts from their street clothes, or else they wore the photo crew’s belts, or something like that. The funny thing is that the SI folks didn’t Photoshop the belts to black — would’ve been simple enough. Probably figured nobody would notice, which of course means they didn’t reckon with Uni Watch readers. Big thanks to Marc and Chris for their sharp observations (and for sending me scans of the magazine cover, because every newsstand I visited was sold out by the time I started investigating this one).
Uni Watch News Ticker: Ted Lilly of the Blue Jays had the initials “DJM” inscribed on his cap last night. Not sure why, but I’ve made a few inquiries — more details once I have them (with thanks to Riley Anderson for the tip). … Latest protest against the Sabres’ new logo came in the form of this cartoon, which ran in yesterday’s Buffalo News (with thanks to Jon Muck). … Interesting sponsorship boondoggle at the World Lacrosse Championships, where the Canadian team has the name of their equipment supplier, Warrior, on the back of each player’s jersey, with player surnames relegated to the back of the helmet (big thanks to Tom Langan, who began his communiquÃ© by saying, accurately, “The World Lacrosse Championships are underway and I’m sure you had no idea”). … Some interesting similarities on the back of the American team’s jerseys, too. … Yesterday’s comments section included a note about Rangers catcher Gerald Laird wearing a white mask on Saturday. You can see screen-grabs here, here, and here. This is the latest example of Mizuno, which is Laird’s equipment outfitter, providing a catcher with two different masks — a colored one for home (where Laird looks like this) and a gray-ish one for the road. Another catcher who does this: Victor Martinez (home, road). … Matt Frost reports that Rice is changing its football unis from this and this to this, this, and this. “I don’t know if they’re getting rid of the winged helmets, but the new head coach seems to be dumping all remnants of the old program (which went a stellar 2-10 last year), so it’s probable.” … You know how a boxer will often have his name printed on his trunks? I’d love to see the guy on the right in this photo do that — his name is (deep breath) Sod Looknongyangtoy (and he had a bit of a rough night on Saturday).