Two interesting moments during last night’s Yanks/Braves game in Atlanta.
One of them came during the top of the 9th, when Mariano Rivera got a rare turn at bat — only the second regular-season plate appearance of his career, and only the fifth overall. So this was a very unusual chance to see him in a batting helmet.
But hey, what’s with the “91”? It was on the back of the helmet, too — apparently Rivera had to use Alfredo Aceves’s helmet. Granted, closers don’t bat very often, but are you really telling me that the spare-no-expense Yankees couldn’t be bothered to have a helmet for a Hall of Famer? Next you’re gonna tell me that Derek Jeter’s range isn’t what it used to be. (For the record, Rivera flied out, stranding three runners. Clutch performer my ass.)
The more interesting tidbit occurred in the bottom of the 8th, when Brian Bruney came in to pitch. Turns out he didn’t have the Yankee Stadium patch on the back of his cap. No biggie there — as we’ve previously noted, Jeter and Robinson Cano have also gone patch-free lately. But they’ve at least had the MLB logo on his cap, while Bruney did not have it last night.
I did a little checking and discovered that Bruney’s cap was also plain-backed during his two previous appearances, on June 19th and June 16th. His last appearance before that was on May 19th (he spent several weeks on the DL), and in that game he had the stadium patch. So his no-frills cap appears to be something he’s worn only during his latest stretch of activity.
Here’s the thing: Where can you even find an authentic Yankees cap without either the stadium patch of the MLB logo? Bruney might just have a collector’s item.
(Thanks to everyone who sent submitted info and screen shots, including Doug Keklak, Terrence O’Donohue, Jesse Ghiorzi, Chris Merce, Brian Harvey, and of course Phil.)
Raffle/Redemske Reminder: I’m currently raffling off four pairs of Wilco tickets and taking up a collection to help out former Uni Watch bench coach Bryan Redemske, who broke his back in a cycling accident last week. Full details on both of these projects here.
Last Chance to See That Thing You Never Cared About Anyway: This is the last weekend that the Candela Structures exhibit will be up at the City Reliquary. Also, I’m giving a private showing of the exhibit to a couple of people at noon tomorrow. If anyone wants to get in on that, let me know.
Uni Watch News Ticker: The Brooklyn Cyclones became the Baracklyn Cyclones two nights ago. Photo gallery here. ”¦ Brian Schulz reports that former Vikings player Randall McDaniel had some interesting things to say during a radio interview yesterday: “He said he was going to give Canton his shoulder pads, which he was issued on day one as a Viking and wore his entire career. They also asked for his practice jersey, because he had only used ONE practice jersey his entire career as well. He said it was so patched and stitched up that it barely resembled a jersey any longer, and that the only way you knew it was purple was because the end that tucked into his pants was still a brighter purple, while the other parts of the jersey was a mismatch of lavender and white stitching. He went on to say that it’s currently hanging in his home and that he told Canton no, they couldn’t have it.” ”¦ Pawtucket and Durham recently held a Negro Leagues night, and Peter Romano took a bunch of photos. ”¦ Reprinted from yesterday’s comments: The 76ers didn’t quite revive their old logo exactly intact — they slightly altered the 6. ”¦ A few days ago I mentioned the Spaghetti Bowl. Turns out there’s a bunch of photos of it in the Life archives (with thanks to Lance Smith). ”¦ Interesting ESPN branding/style guide here (good find by Alan Borock). ”¦ Amazing old jersey available here (with thanks to Kevin Marks). ”¦ NOBs are being restored to Utah’s basketball uni. ”¦ According to this story, UNC “will wear throwback uniforms in a number of games that honor a championship team from the past” for the upcoming season (with thanks to Chris Warfford). ”¦ Mike Hersh reports that the College Vault folks have branched out into horse racing, as well as non-sports topics. ”¦ You know how Phil and several other readers are tracking various teams’ records by uniform? The Mets are doing that too (with thanks to Greg Michelena, who took that shot prior to last night’s game at Shea). ”¦ Georgia Tech’s hoops team will wear throwbacks through the 2009-10 season to honor the anniversaries of the 1960, 1985, and 1990 teams. According to this item, the team’s home whites will resemble the 1960 uni, and the road golds will be patterned after the 1985 and 1990 designs (with thanks to Glynn McGehee).