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Love Song for Taney

LLWS - hed

By Morris Levin

In Williamsport, Pennsylvania this afternoon at 3:00 PM, the Taney Youth Baseball Association all star team meets South Nashville in round one of the 2014 Little League World Series. This is kind of a big deal in my neighborhood near Philadelphia’s Italian Market, where Taney is the area little league. Neighbors plan to leave work early to watch the game together at Milkboy at 10th and Chestnut Streets, and New Wave at 3rd and Catherine Streets.

Unfortunately for the communities from which these teams come, the game appears on Little League’s site, as Mid-Atlantic at Southeast.

The Taney team entered in the competition has a name, the Taney Dragons. They wear navy blue and white uniforms, and are taught to wear them properly. Taney wore their navy and white when they became Little League Pennsylvania Champions in Lower Perkiomen. Here they are as Mid-Atlantic Regional Champs in Bristol, Connecticut.

As if it was an honorific, Little League renames each team in its corporate communications during the World Series with a generic regional title. On Thursday, Little League summarized the afternoon’s match-up where Great Lakes beat Northwest: “A great effort by Pierce Jones carried Great Lakes to a 12-2 win in five innings over Northwest on Thursday at Lamade.” Great Lakes does have a real name, Jackie Robinson West, and had its own style until it reached Williamsport.

Russell Athletic pays Little League Baseball to advertise at the LLWS and be designated the official uniform supplier. Russell updates its basic youth baseball jersey and presents it in sixteen color combinations. The company introduces them at the LLWS after which it can begin arrangements to sell the patterns to leagues and coaches for the 2015 season. In this sense, the players, coaches, and umpires in the Little League World Series are mannequins for Russell’s 2015 sales efforts.

In Williamsport, Mid-Atlantic Taney has been outfitted as Russell’s take on West Ham United supporters whitewashing any sense of Taney’s neighborhood identity in service of this commercial campaign.

I am not necessarily anti-jersey advertising in youth athletics. Some of the greatest youth athletic clubs of all time have worn advertisements. I wore local company’s names on the back of my youth baseball shirts.

Philadelphia is a city of neighborhoods. Many national stories about the Taney team describe them as from “center city”. This has caused a bit of consternation among those of us who live south of South Street.

The Taney Recreation Center is at 26th and Pine Streets. Center City is Philadelphia’s downtown area which was the city of Philadelphia’s borders prior to the 1854 Act of Consolidation. South Street was the city’s southern border, and divided the City of Philadelphia from the Southwark District along the Delaware River, and the Moyamensing District along the Schuylkill River.

Taney Rec Center is in Center City. However one of the hearts of the Taney athletic program is Steve Bandura and the programs he runs at the Marian Anderson Recreation Center at 17th and Fitzwater Streets. Marian Anderson is in the historic African-American neighborhood where Marian Anderson was born in 1897. Steve’s program runs baseball, basketball, soccer, and other athletic programs. More so, he teaches his athletes about history. He called one team the Monarchs after the successful Negro League franchise Kansas City Monarchs. One of the traveling teams has been the Philadelphia Stars which he dressed in the Negro National League’s 1938 cap, and 1942 home uniform. They visit Cypress Hills Cemetery and pay their respects to the memory of Jackie Robinson. (Again- see how well they wear their classic uniforms!)

This is a public relations and sales opportunity for Russell Athletic. Teams and players delighted in the new uniforms and equipment.

But Little League is about geography and these are neighborhoods and communities who are proud to see their neighborhood on the big stage. I appreciate many aspects of living in the country’s Mid-Atlantic region, but I would not identify with the region as a definitional quality of my self-construct. Taney is part of the background aesthetic of my neighborhood. Boys and girls wear their Taney little league t-shirts around in whatever color their team happens to be that season. This is from five years in t-ball up to 15 year olds. Taney is part of my neighborhood. What is missed in Williamsport is the very variance between all of our neighborhoods and what defines each as home.

SEPTA’s route 47 bus goes by my house. As I walked to Shot Tower Coffee yesterday morning, a boy eight or nine years old was waiting at the stop with his mom. He had on his backpack and was ready for the summer day. Propped on his head was the navy blue Taney baseball cap with the full-block white T. You can buy one here ”“ the money goes direct to the Taney Youth Baseball Association.

Update on Bill Henderson Call for Assistance

Bill Henderson reports an incredible outpouring of response after I wrote here last week of his desire for assistance in researching the next edition of the MLB Game Worn Jersey Guide. Bill has personally written back to each of the individuals who have responded, and asks me to pass along here the message that he is in the process of trying to divide up the work in a way that makes sense. “So many people contribute facts and photos to me on an ongoing basis that one of the biggest challenges is coordinating and fact checking all of the input, by team and date, to make sure we have a complete picture,” he says.

Over the coming weeks, Bill is going to start laying out the scope of the future seventh edition, and will be back in touch with this who have volunteered to help. He is grateful for the support!

________________

Morris Levin is the proprietor of the business consulting practice Elysian Fields LLC in Philadelphia. He is not compensated for the editing of the Guide and has been reimbursed for postage expenses. Morris pinch-hits for Phil on Fridays when Phil pinch-hits for Paul in August. Morris’ favorite jersey is his 1987 Phillies #42 Don Carman batting practice jersey, and favorite uniform the 1950 to 1969 Phillies home set.

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And now a few words from Paul: In case you missed it yesterday, my latest ESPN column gives you the chance to vote on which is better — white uni or colored uni — for all 30 NHL teams.

And as long as I have you here:

• The winners of the raffle for the three copies of the “Compendium of Baseball Uniforms” print from Pop Chart Lab are Dan Herr, Andrew Schall, and Jim Frick. Congrats to them!

• If you haven’t already ordered your Uni Watch 15th-anniversary patch, get ’em now before I sell out!

•  At some point today — probably in the afternoon — I’m going to have an article posted on a new design site called reForm. I’ll have more details about this next week, but if you’re curious you can go to the reForm home page and see if my article has been posted yet (once it’s up, it’ll be at the top of the page).

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Fall2014_logo
U.W.F.F.L. Spring League

UWFFL Developmental League – Weekday Edition
By Rob Holecko

A short but sweet UWFFL update — two semifinal games on tap as the Spring/Summer Developmental League takes one more step towards crowning a champion.

The St. John’s Stingers, now 8-0-1 after defeating Cheyenne in the quarterfinals last week, head down to South Carolina to take on the Greenville Pointers. The Pointers are 9-0 and defeated Missouri in their quarterfinal last week.

Semifinal1

. . . . .

St. John’s at Greenville
  
pollcode.com free polls 

. . . . .

In the other semifinal, the Wild Card Charleston Navigators, now 9-1, are fresh off the upset of the Yellowknife Lumberjacks in the last round, and they head over to Little Rock, Arkansas, to take on the 9-0 Diamondbacks.

Semifinal2

. . . . .

Charleston at Little Rock
  
pollcode.com free polls 

. . . . .

The winners will face off next week in the first UWFFL D-League Championship, while also going on this week we also have some preseason rivalry games, as well as three regular season minor league games to kickoff the Fall Season. So head over to uwfantasyfootballleague.com and vote on some more football games, and we’ll see you next week.

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skins watch - 50 wide

‘skins Watch: “Here’s a Redskins-inspired ”˜Rednecks’ T-shirt” as reported in the WaPo (submitted by Tommy Turner). … The Washington Redskins visited Zuni Pueblo, but they wanted Native-made artwork and crafts, particularly stuff that promotes the Redskins team brand — not “Drunk Artists” (submitted by Paul). … Finally, Tom Currie writes, “The attached photo is pretty crappy but it looks like the NFL network is using the Washington logo with the r logo instead of the head a significant amount. The top left logo looks to be the r logo as was the logo they used for transitioning to replays and a few other places. Was there a reason for this besides the offensive nature of the logo?”

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Uni Watch News Ticker:

Baseball News: Following up on yesterday’s lede, Todd Radom sends this picture, “taken the day that Seattle Pilots officially became Brewers, 04/01/1970 — talk about team overlap.” … Here’s another great old photo from Bruce Menard, 110 Yrs Ago Yesterday (the Boston Americans [Red Sox] vs Chicago White Sox at South Side Park 8/14/1904). … Very nice vintage 1960s Houston Astrodome ashtray on eBay (from Jonathan Daniel). Also from Jonathan: If an Astrodome ashtray isn’t your speed, how about one from the Orioles?. Finally, check out this beautiful rare 1972 Orioles pin. … Check out the Iron Pigs upcoming “Pirate & Princess Night” jerseys they’ll wear on Saturday, August 16th (via MiLB Promos). Arrrrrr! … Ugh: The University of Northwestern Ohio has a red turf infield (h/t to Ryan Altenbach). … From This Week in Baseball from June of 1978, Jonathan Daniel sends this clip of the White Sox wearing green bowler hats on field presumably during warmups. “I did a quick search but couldn’t find any more info.” … Yesterday, Kenley Jansen was wearing (borrowing) Clayton Kershaw’s helmet (via Cody Pullan). … Reader Trés Lawless was watching the American Legion World Series, featuring Lakeville North, NE’s pinstriped, chest and cap lettered, and stirrup unis. Also, Brooklawn (NJ)’s unis had a ‘POP’ patch with a ’13’ in the ‘O’. … Stetson Pevear writes, “I went to the Braves vs Dodgers today and stopped by the museum. They had some great jersey relics including an original zipper jersey. I also found out they once had a satin jersey back in the 40s. I thought squatchee stickers on helmets were relatively new, but here is one on a 1992 Javy Lopez catcher’s helmet.” … Matthew McDonnough went to a Yakult Swallows vs. Hiroshima Toyo Carp game in Hiroshima earlier this week. One is a 3-digit uni number on the BP pitcher; the other is the little bit of flair/flare on the legs of the Swallows’ pants (meant to look like the tail of a swallow, perhaps?). … Michael Taylor of the Nats cut out the back of his BP cap to show off his high-top (from Yusuke Toyoda).

NFL News: More uni rankings, this time from CSN Washington who’ve ranked all 32 teams from worst uni to best. I disagree with their #1, but they got the worst one correct (h/t to TommyTheCPA). … Here is a really fantastic article on helmet choices faced by Lamar Hunt and the Texans/Chiefs in their early years. Highly recommended reading. … The Saints no longer have the shield on practice jerseys. (2013 and 2014). Thanks to Thomas Marcotte. … An E-mailer who goes by “Birdsfan” writes, “It should be noted that, in addition to abandoning the ‘dazzle yoke’ material on the former style/no change Elite 51 jerseys, the Eagles have adopted kiss cut numbers on the new style nikelace/Flywire jerseys. See detail on tv numbers here. Until this season, the Eagles used ‘traditional’ three-layer tackle twill numbers as seen here.” … In last evening’s Bears/Jaguars game, Jordan Palmer was wearing his wedding band; (here’s another, better picture), with thanks to Jen Hayden. … Chip Kelly apparently likes his players wearing white socks during practice and LeSean McCoy likes wearing black socks (from Yusuke Toyoda).

College Football News: Reader Preston Feiler sent in some photos of the new Miami Hurricanes unis. He’s not enamored with the look, especially the new orange jersey, which “have a horrible green stripe that goes across the back that wasn’t noticed before.” … Pitt’s season tickets feature images from old programs, which is nice (h/t Dan Kardon). … Since there aren’t enough uniform polls out there, here’s one more: ESPN asks who does alternate uniforms the best in the Big XII? … The CMU Chippewas have gotten some much needed new unis (although I not such a fan of the “Fire Up Chips!” on the sleeves. You can read more here. … From our Notre Dame guy, Warren Junium comes this: ND helmets appear to feature serifs on the over facemask decal, which was formerly sans-serif. … Wow. ake a look at the cover of the first Fiesta Bowl game program from the 1971 game (h/t Sully).

Hockey News: From our friend over at SportsLogos.net, Chris Creamer, the Carolina Hurricanes have released their 2014-15 Jersey Schedule. Based on that, they’ll wear their all-black (third) jersey 12 times during the season, all at home. … Looks like the St. Louis Blues will have a new look on August 25th (thanks to Joe Mueller).

Soccer News: Just in time for the Euro 2016 Qualifiers, Belgium has a new set of home and away kits (h/t to El Duderino from yesterday’s comments).

Grab Bag: Check out this pair of muddy sneakers. No, they weren’t worn in wet conditions or anything, they’re actually designed to look like they’re covered in mud. Just what the world needs (thanks, Paul). … Have you lost a leg, but want to support the Washington football or baseball teams? You’re in luck! (thanks to Yusuke Toyoda).

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And that’s going to do it for this fine Friday. Thanks, as always, to Morris Levin for his Friday segment. Great stuff! Looking forward to your next installment.

Everyone have a good weekend, and I’ll catch you again on Monday.

Follow me on Twitter @PhilHecken.

Peace.

.. … ..

“I’ve never had a better experience at a sporting event. Except for the time my brother snagged a BP home run, and a little Canadian kid bit him. He clamped down until my brother dropped the ball, then the wily Canuck scooped it up, and gave it to his mom, who deposited it in her handbag. Oh! Canada!”
— Cort McMurray

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106 comments to Love Song for Taney

  • The Jeff | August 15, 2014 at 7:43 am |

    “The attached photo is pretty crappy but it looks like the NFL network is using the Washington logo with the r logo instead of the head a significant amount. The top left logo looks to be the r logo as was the logo they used for transitioning to replays and a few other places.

    What exactly am I supposed to be looking at? The only Redskins logo I see in that blurry picture is the one on the score bug which certainly appears to be the team’s normal logo.

  • Dane | August 15, 2014 at 7:48 am |

    I also saw the R logo that was used during the Washington football team’s first preseason game. Here’s a better screenshot that shows both logos:
    https://cdn1.lockerdome.com/uploads/c7d99b037481650e25cf0a6393d6b768058508c1bb825734cd88bf7fb8979256_large

    Keep in mind, that was not the NFL Network using that logo. NFL Net was re-airing Washington’s local broadcast of the game from Comcast SportsNet. Kenny Albert and Joe Theismann also had the R logo on their microphone flags.

    • The Jeff | August 15, 2014 at 7:58 am |

      Ok then, so it’s this logo: http://www.redskins.com/assets/images/media-gallery/script_r_rbn_logoa2.jpg

      So the question is how long have they been using that? If it’s new this season, it may mean something, but if it’s been in use for the last decade, it’s nothing.

      • pboss | August 15, 2014 at 10:13 am |

        They’ve been using that for awhile, probably whenever Snyder came up with the idea of a Redskins Broadcasting Network.

    • Adam R. W. | August 15, 2014 at 8:00 am |

      Often in the preseason, NFL Network pretty much streams the local broadcast of the games. In this case, the broadcast is being done by the “Redskins Broadcast Network”. It’s a network logo, not an NFL team logo. Nothing to see here.

  • ClydeLouis | August 15, 2014 at 7:59 am |

    As Dane pointed out, the “Curly R” logo IS on the microphones because that’s the logo of the “Redskins Broadcast Network.” If you go to the team’s website, you’ll see most all the videos and mic cubes are branded as such.

    NFL Network was just retransmitting the home team broadcast, but they are still using the Indian head logo in all of their own original programming.

  • Ed | August 15, 2014 at 8:13 am |

    Errata department: In the NFL ticker entry about the Saint’s practice jersey, the 2013 and 2014 links are of the same photo…

    ed

    • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 8:25 am |

      Thanks. Should be fixed now.

  • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 8:32 am |

    The new Belgium unis are an unfortunate byproduct of what happens when uni suppliers change mid-cycle and they just get generic jerseys in team colors (like Bosnia at the World Cup). The home jersey is just the Condivo 14 and the away is the Toque 13.

    • Padday | August 15, 2014 at 8:48 am |

      The worst part (as this article from L’Equipe rightly points out: http://www.lequipe.fr/Football/Actualites/Le-scandale-du-nouveau-maillot/490355) is that the difference in retail price between the generic kit and the generic kit with Belgian crest is €55 (€30 and €85 respectively).

      • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 9:37 am |

        Oof.

        FWIW, the Condivo 14 generic (template for most of the Adidas World Cup jerseys this year) is pretty pricy, $59.99 before customization, so the price difference isn’t as staggering.

    • El Duderino | August 15, 2014 at 9:41 am |

      The generic look isn’t really the problem. It just that they didn’t put a minimal effort to turn the white accents to yellow.

      • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 9:46 am |

        Or add any red or yellow to the away jersey.

  • Rob S | August 15, 2014 at 8:36 am |

    Congratulations, Adidas, your Techfit jerseys look like stretchy trash bags.

    • Rob S | August 15, 2014 at 8:38 am |

      Think I forgot to close the link for the trash bag part or something: this should do it.

    • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 9:39 am |

      But do the jerseys come with OdorShield®?

    • BvK1126 | August 15, 2014 at 11:17 am |

      I’d like to put those jerseys in stretchy trash bags…

  • jwl3 | August 15, 2014 at 8:43 am |

    I can understand the pride and joy of Taney. When Goodlettsville, TN (the park that I played at!) made it all the way to the championship game, there was a buzz throughout the whole city. It reminds us why we played sports as a kid. Good luck, Taney (, but I’m kinda rooting for South Nashville because they’re the hometown team).

    • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 8:55 am |

      jwl3- That you might be rooting for South Nashville is precisely my point. They are your home town team, as opposed to a team called “Southeast”. Morris

      • Connie DC | August 15, 2014 at 9:43 am |

        Morris, your stuff on this site is always first-rate. Always glad to see your byline. And I certainly share your localist take on the Taney unis. Cheers!

      • Buck Fontana | August 15, 2014 at 2:09 pm |

        Spot on, Morris Levin.

        IMO, Little League is about as local as baseball gets. In my area, there are three LL organizations playing games within 15 minutes of home and these are neighborhood kids playing.

        The great thing about LL is that it allows a neighborhood group of kids to get all the way to the big stage. But then making them switch to some sort of regional identification is absurd. They’re not representing the Far West or the Southeast, but their local Little League organization.

        So, I’d love to see them wearing “TANEY” on their jerseys instead of Mid Atlantic. Just as I would have loved seeing “HAZEL DELL” when one of our local teams got to Williamsport, instead of “West”.

    • scottrj | August 15, 2014 at 9:18 am |

      While I sympathize to some degree with the point that being made to wear a uniform bearing a regional identifier dilutes Taney’s unique character and individuality, I can’t help but think that the tradeoff – namely, being able to watch the game from the corner tavern in lieu of traveling to Williamsport (not exactly a tourist mecca) to do so – isn’t a completely unfair tradeoff. To the channel-flipping casual fan, “Taney” signifies nothing, whereas at least with the regional identifier that same person can determine instantly if there’s some rooting interest in sticking around to watch. In which case, if the announcers do their job, the casual fan will learn about Taney’s compelling backstory anyway.

      • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 9:37 am |

        Or they could identify the team as “NORTHEAST” (or whatever) in every way (on screen graphics, scoreboard, etc.) and refer to them that way on the audio, but still let the kids wear their “TANEY” unis.

        • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 9:45 am |

          scottrj- There are multiple ways to celebrate the origin community and identify the team in LLWS regions. Each team could wear their own uniforms with a LLWS region patch on their sleeves or chests. NCAA Basketball now looks like this where tournament teams wear both a conference (region) patch as well as NCAA patch for tournament.

        • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 9:52 am |

          But what if they run into another team with navy and white uniforms? It’s less likely that the teams would have alternate uniforms..

        • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 10:21 am |

          “…what if they run into another team with navy and white uniforms?”

          ~~~

          Holy shit, I guess we’d have to call off the whole thing then!

          (Sorry for the sarcasm — I’ve been working 12 & 13 hour days this week in addition to all the UW stuff — I’m literally running on fumes today).

          But seriously, so what if another team had similar uniforms? It’s not like they’re playing a sport where offense/defense are in equal numbers (football, basketball, hockey, soccer) make that an impossible situation.

          Would it possibly be confusing? Yes. Would it make the game unplayable? Hardly. If teams at the MLB level can both wear dark tops simultaneously and play a game, so too can the 12 & 13 year olds.

        • JTH | August 15, 2014 at 10:46 am |

          I would be completely astonished to find out that these kids did not at some point in the season play another team that was wearing navy jerseys and caps.

        • JTH | August 15, 2014 at 10:49 am |

          well, that was worded pretty poorly.

          What I meant to say was that the chances that they did play games against teams wearing similar uniforms are very high.

          Hell, when my son was playing travel ball, his team played games against teams wearing identical — literally — uniforms.

        • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 11:16 am |

          (Sorry for the sarcasm – I’ve been working 12 & 13 hour days this week in addition to all the UW stuff – I’m literally running on fumes today).

          Tsk.

        • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 11:29 am |

          “Tsk.”

          ~~~

          oooohhh. Sorry, that’s not the answer I was looking for.

          But you could address my other points about the teams wearing similar unis and how that might actually affect play (which is, would it be confusing? possibly. but unplayable? hardly). Feel free to disagree.

        • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 8:29 pm |

          oooohhh. Sorry, that’s not the answer I was looking for.

          But you could address my other points about the teams wearing similar unis and how that might actually affect play (which is, would it be confusing? possibly. but unplayable? hardly). Feel free to disagree.

          How about this then. It might not affect play, as you said. But they have another key…constituency: ESPN. I could easily see Little League saying “we have to make things look good for TV, so let’s make sure all 16 teams have uniforms that contrast to each other.”

    • ScottyM | August 15, 2014 at 10:16 am |

      I found today’s entry by Morris to be very personal and without much focus. This is not an attack on him. Of course the local team transitions to a regional team in the LLWS. And I imagine the kids LOVE the opportunity to receive a brand new set of unis — which they can wear with pride, and keep for generations. That’s what so unique about it.

      The interesting point — for this site — might have been how the hometown unis had a cut unique to the way the kids were taught to wear them (socks, bloused, etc.). Meanwhile, the Russell unis appear to be a standard sloppy, baggy cut minus the socks?

      • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 10:34 am |

        ScottyM- Thank you for your feedback. I wrote this piece as a personal piece and went out of my way to specify my neighborhood points of orientation. Youth athletics to me is about community and communities. Our neighborhoods are distinct from each other and tell our stories. Each little league has a name for a reason, and uniforms and names on uniforms tell each league’s story. That is what is lost. I have written more technical posts here, and I do indulge in these more unfocused meditations. Morris

        • ScottyM | August 15, 2014 at 12:29 pm |

          Understood. Obviously, you have tremendous pride in the community. Neighborhoods (and their little league teams) are distinct all over the U.S., so that’s not unusual.

          I don’t agree that the neither the names, nor the “story” is lost with the shift to LLWS uniforms. They are an honor to wear, and the television broadcasters go out of their way to add color and personality to each locality.

          If I’m not mistaken, the teams are “All-Stars” from their respective communities. So, in essence, they’ve already switched out of their original, local team uniform… into the All-Star team uniform, correct? And now they’re representing a geographic region. That’s a huge honor.

          The unfocused comment comes from my having trouble with transitions that were hard to follow in places (“Taney Rec Center” ‘graph to the “Russell PR” ‘graph). Regardless, I appreciate your points and passion. Good luck to your team.

    • mike 2 | August 15, 2014 at 11:52 am |

      Very interesting piece from Morris.

      For the international teams, maybe the perspective is a little different – we had a local team go to the LLWS a couple of years ago, representing Canada, and it was a tremendous honour to get the new uniforms with “Canada” on the front, playing for their country.

      I certainly understand that there’s not the same pride playing for “Southeast”.

    • walter | August 15, 2014 at 12:40 pm |

      My first impression is uniforms from a template tend to level the playing field, metaphorically. Because if a team in ragged, patched uniforms shows up, faces a team turned out like the New York Yankees, and wins, it’s the feel-good story of the year. If they lose, it makes the team look bad and by extension, the network for seeming to line up a clay pigeon.
      Getting back to the occasion of teams wearing identical color schemes, it can certainly be done… but would you want to watch it?

      • scottrj | August 15, 2014 at 1:56 pm |

        Very valid point. The possibility (if not probability) exists that teams competing in the LLWS will come from divergent socio-economic backgrounds (just by way of example, the median incomes for the towns representing the current Northwest and Southwest teams are 50% higher than the median income for the town representing the Midwest). In that situation it’s certainly foreseeable that you may have a rag-tag-looking team facing a spit-and-polish one. About 10 years ago a friend of mine’s kid competed in a LLWS regional final against a team managed by former MLB All-Star Dante Bichette – I’ve got to believe Bichette’s squad was outfitted as nice as any in the competition, and probably nicer than most.

        Let me be perfectly clear: this is not to suggest, even remotely, that anything about Taney is remotely rag-tag, because it’s not. Just saying that while I sympathize with the point that what makes them (and every other squad, for that matter) unique is being lost somewhat, ensuring that the competitors are outfitted in a way that eliminates any possibility of some kids being made to feel uncomfortable in some way is a small price to pay.

      • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 2:52 pm |

        Could there be some sort of happy medium, Walter?

        Could all teams reaching the big stage be given the opportunity to wear the templated generic unis if they so choose, or to stick with what got them there (so to speak)?

        I don’t disagree that if a team wants a bright, shiny new uni that they can keep forever as a cherished memento is necessarily bad (although I prefer each team to keep its unis), so they should always have the option — but why not also provide the team with the option to don its own unis and wear them, especially if their hometown is on the front, with pride?

        I don’t see the harm in that.

        ~~~

        Now, with regard to this:

        “Getting back to the occasion of teams wearing identical color schemes, it can certainly be done… but would you want to watch it?”

        That’s a tough question to ask on a uni board, since all or most of us probably care as much or more about the unis than we do the sport or team…but…

        these are 12 and 13 year old kids, not professional (or even college/high school) athletes…would I want to watch them (versus say Oregon vs. Texas or something) any less because they happened to be dressed similarly? No.

        They’re kids playing a kids game, and while my OCD might take a while to adjust, I certainly would not care whether these kids were wearing similar unis, or whether they were “rag-tag” or had holes in them or whatever — I’d be watching because they’re playing a game (and hopefully having fun).

        I’ll save my rancor of shitty uni matchups for the pros and semi-pros (college football/basketball). Because at that level it DOES matter. Here, not so much.

  • Ryan | August 15, 2014 at 8:44 am |

    The Javy Lopez helmet clearly says 1998 NLCS on the brim.

    • George N | August 15, 2014 at 2:46 pm |

      And that’s not a squatchee sticker on the top of it either. I’ve seen, and actually own, a few batting helmets that have the white sticker on the top of the crown. The Yankees used to have one on their batting helmets for the longest time.

      The squatcheee sticker is color-matched to the baseball cap and it is raised as well.

  • scottrj | August 15, 2014 at 8:45 am |

    Am I missing something? The ticker item about the Redskins’ visit to Zuni Pueblo attributes the “no drunk artists” language to them, but the actual story linked to does the opposite.

    • The Jeff | August 15, 2014 at 8:53 am |

      I’m guessing the article got changed between it’s initial submission and now.

    • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 9:09 am |

      I think it’s in reference to the “be respectful” and “don’t smell of alcohol” postscript in this letter, which came from the governor’s office and not the team, though it looks like some people thought the “don’t be drunk” directive came from the team/team’s grassroots organization.

    • walter | August 15, 2014 at 1:12 pm |

      When I applied for this job, nobody had to tell me not to show up drunk or slovenly. So my attitude is, if you reek of alcohol or are a slob, it’s your funeral, not mine.

  • Simply Moono | August 15, 2014 at 9:04 am |

    “Was there a reason for for his besides the offensive nature of the logo?”

    I think someone did the thing where you accidentally type the same word twice in a row, or someone had a rough time with autocorrect.

    • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 9:14 am |

      That was a direct cut/paste quote from the submitter. I’ve corrected it (to what I think he meant) now.

  • Original Jim | August 15, 2014 at 9:28 am |

    The renaming of Little League regional teams is not a new idea. This has been going on for at least 30 or so years. Teams from each state play to represent their region in the World Series.

    Giving them region-specific uniforms not only makes it easier to identify where the team is from (Mid-Atlantic vs Taney, for example), it reduces the possibility of two identically-clad teams playing against each other. It’s bad enough to watch both MLB or MILB teams playing in their alternate uniforms when they’re the same colored top, how can you identify a much smaller Little League team?

    Russell, New Era, and Easton sponsor the World Series, and supply the uniforms and gear to the kids (I think the umpires are on their own, but most shirts are made by Honigs).

    • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 9:40 am |

      Original Jim- That this is not a new idea makes it no more laudable. Mid-Atlantic or Southeast or Great Lakes tells me so little about where the team is from as to be slightly better than useless. Of all sports, baseball is functionally among the most immune from confusion arising from teams wearing the same color. Morris

      • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 9:59 am |

        It might be a case of manufacturer’s convenience. For example, the Great Lakes Regional championship was contested between teams from Illinois and Indiana. They could have screened “Illinois” on the gold Russell jerseys, I suppose, but they would have had to wait until late Saturday afternoon to do so (as opposed to screening “Great Lakes ” on them much earlier).

        I, too, think the LLWS uniforms should better reflect the various regional teams, but manufacturing concerns may play a bigger part than we imagine.

  • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 9:40 am |

    You guys might be shocked to learn that the Washington football team is appealing the USPTO ruling: http://bigstory.ap.org/article/redskins-appeal-trademark-decision-team-name

    • The Jeff | August 15, 2014 at 9:51 am |

      I am absolutely shocked… that it took this long to become official.

      • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 10:58 am |

        Well, since they’re at the appeal stage, they need to prepare an argument that’s more than the My Cousin Vinny defense.

        And while the last ruling was overturned based on standing of the petitioners, that doesn’t seem to be the case this time around.

  • Jeff | August 15, 2014 at 9:42 am |

    Great piece, Morris. Tremendous read.

  • Don G | August 15, 2014 at 9:45 am |

    That Taney piece I think is my favorite I’ve ever read on this site. Great to see a community take pride in its team, and using baseball to teach kids about the past. Awesome. I may get one of those hats for my oldest son.

  • Joseph | August 15, 2014 at 9:48 am |

    On the CSN Washington ranking of NFL uniforms I rolled my eyes at the incredibly low ranking of the Colts. But it lost all credibility by misidentifying Miami’s dominate color. The Dolphins wear aqua, not teal.

  • Flip | August 15, 2014 at 10:00 am |

    ‘Cept for the leisure suit collar, I always was a fan of the ChiSox clam digger look. (Well, maybe not the shorts.)

    • JTH | August 15, 2014 at 10:43 am |

      Well… the clam diggers and shorts were mutually exclusive with that uniform set.

    • walter | August 15, 2014 at 1:14 pm |

      To me, the leisure suit collars were part of the fun! Mind you, it would have made a better impression had the collar gone all the way around.

  • Thomas J | August 15, 2014 at 10:26 am |

    Faaaascintating article on the Chiefs’ helmet history. Did not know about Lamar Hunt personally designing the interlocking KC.

    The point about Riddell changing its design from paiting the outside to putting dye into the plastic shell is another great detail. Especially since it tweaked the color of Chiefs’ helmet.

    Really makes one appreciate those Hank Stram uniforms. Some of the best ever. Super Bowl I might have been the most aesthetically pleasing ever.

  • Brian | August 15, 2014 at 10:37 am |

    Taney’s new uniforms do have a slight Philly tie-in (unintentional, I’m sure): they use roughly the same colors as the Phillies’ road uniforms from 1973 to 1988.

    http://soaznewsx.com/Portals/0/Images/Mar%202014%20pics/031714%20pics/MikeSchmidt.jpg

  • El Duderino | August 15, 2014 at 10:49 am |

    FIFA just released their technical report of the World Cup. It’s a treasure trove of scouting, graphs, charts, rankings and statistics. Yet most importantly, tons of action shots of the World Cup. Page 88 has shot of the tournament’s best uni-matchup, Croatia and Cameroon.

    I would recommend checking out all of them.
    Men’s Tournaments: http://www.fifa.com/aboutfifa/footballdevelopment/technicalsupport/technicalstudygroup/menreports.html
    Women’s Tournaments: http://www.fifa.com/aboutfifa/footballdevelopment/technicalsupport/technicalstudygroup/womenreports.html

  • Jonathan | August 15, 2014 at 11:22 am |

    The ring Jordan Palmer is wearing isn’t actually a wedding band, it’s one of the QALO rings that was actually featured ON UniWatch a while back with a Q & A from Palmer.

    • JTH | August 15, 2014 at 12:19 pm |

      Indeed.

      But that IS actually a wedding band. The company’s slogan is “A functional wedding band for an active lifestyle” dontchaknow…

    • JenInChicago | August 15, 2014 at 12:30 pm |

      Yes, I am aware of that, I sent that as a side note that didn’t make the ticker.

      • JenInChicago | August 15, 2014 at 12:31 pm |

        Actually – I believe I typed wedding “band”.

    • Cort | August 15, 2014 at 1:33 pm |

      My wife does a lot of baking, cooking, gardening and sewing. Her ring was always getting gummed up, scratched up and tarnished.

      I work with a lot of very aggressive chemicals. They eat up my wedding band like crazy.

      We bought each other QALO bands last year. Best purchase ever. They are indestructible and easy to clean. They look nice. They’re great!

      (I received no financial remuneration for this endorsement, and am not an official spokesperson of QALO).

  • terriblehuman | August 15, 2014 at 11:24 am |

    A nifty (if not the most easily navigable) interactive feature ranking Premier league clubs based on kit supplier and shirt sponsorship deals: http://espn.go.com/espn/feature/story/_/id/11354724/kit-deal-more-important-ever-premier-league#

    • Ryan M | August 15, 2014 at 4:03 pm |

      At first I was like “oh, great, another one of those sites that kinda sorta looks like it’s scrolling down the page but kinda sorta doesn’t because of the kit outlines’ stationary position,” but then I saw that it actually changed from home to away to third and was fairly impressed with that feature.

  • Vee63 | August 15, 2014 at 11:32 am |

    I had to have a nap after voting on all those NHL uniforms.

    • Jet | August 15, 2014 at 12:59 pm |

      I hear ya. It asks “which do you like better?” when for most of them I was really voting on which one I hated less…

      -Jet

      • walter | August 15, 2014 at 2:42 pm |

        I only voted for the ones I care about.

  • Kub | August 15, 2014 at 11:40 am |

    CMU has a gold jersey too…. https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BvBkOzDIAAEiohI.jpg
    going w/ the Titans stripe on the shoulders it looks like

  • mike 2 | August 15, 2014 at 12:04 pm |

    “In last evening’s Bears/Jaguars game, Jordan Palmer was wearing his wedding band; (here’s another, better picture)”

    What kind of ring is that? The answer is in the Uni-Watch archives!

    http://www.uni-watch.com/2013/11/22/talking-wedding-rings-with-bears-qb-jordan-palmer/

    • JenInChicago | August 15, 2014 at 12:33 pm |

      Yes, I know – I didn’t have time or the energy to look it up – I just said his wedding “band”.

      • mike 2 | August 15, 2014 at 1:32 pm |

        I only noticed it because my wife bought me a qalo band after seeing it on this site. I hadn’t realized the last blog post was about the same QB.

  • Hodges14 | August 15, 2014 at 12:21 pm |

    Remember when Mike Chamernik (I think it was him, my now 21 year old memory may be failing me) asked the UW’ers what their biggest pet peeves were in terms of uniforms? I have to put the Little League World Series uniforms as a late addition. I mean sure, the colors are… vibrant to say the least, but Morris is right in the fact that they are too generic. If Russell Athletic is so adamant about getting good publicity, maybe they should design uniforms based on the all-star uniforms that the kids wear in the pre-Williamsport tournament. I’d much rather see Jackie Robinson LL on a uniform than Great Lakes.

  • Bruce Menard | August 15, 2014 at 12:27 pm |

    To see the larger version of my edit of the 1904 Boston Americans [Red Sox] vs Chicago White Sox at South Side Park 8/14/1904, go here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bsmileart/14924296901/

    Cheers!
    ~Bruce

    • Jet | August 15, 2014 at 1:03 pm |

      Did anyone notice that there’s 10 men on the field in that picture??

      FOUR OUTFIELDERS!

      ??????

      -Jet

      • DenverGregg | August 15, 2014 at 2:44 pm |

        Four outfielders, but only three infielders methinks.

        • Jet | August 15, 2014 at 3:36 pm |

          I see four infielders as well.

          -Jet

    • P Hoelter | August 15, 2014 at 4:09 pm |

      Very bizarre. I had to check for myself, and I see 10 Guys wearing white sox. Bases are loaded with Americans and there are no base coaches and a single ump at home. Could it be a composite photo stitched together in the dark room? Spacing of the fielders is just right for my 10 person co-ed softball league.

      • P Hoelter | August 15, 2014 at 4:40 pm |

        This game was also the American League debut of Dutch Zwilling (White Sox) and Dutch Lerchen (Americans.) Is this the only time two guys named Dutch played their first game in the same game? Double Dutch?

      • DenverGregg | August 15, 2014 at 7:37 pm |

        I think there are base coaches at both first and third.

        • P Hoelter | August 16, 2014 at 12:13 am |

          Doesn’t quite make sense. There are 10 guys white white sox out there. The guys on the bases with dark sox are from Boston. 1st and 3rd dark sox guys could be coaches standing right on top of base but that doesn’t change 10 guys with white sox.

  • Graf Zeppelin | August 15, 2014 at 12:57 pm |

    I don’t mind uniform rankings/assessments/opinions that differ from mine. As expected I disagree with a lot of the CSN rankings and comments. What bothers me is statements like this:

    Aside from the Browns, the Texans have the NFL’s most conservative look.

    I suppose one’s definition of a “conservative look” may vary, but it’s hard to fathom that the Texans’ look is more conservative than, say, the Raiders or the Giants. For one thing, each of those teams’ home jerseys has one-color block numerals and no striping or other decoration of any kind. Neither team has an alternate jersey, the Raiders have only one set of pants, and both are wearing essentially the same helmet designs they wore in 1965.

    Not that the Texans’ unis aren’t conservative by expansion-team standards, but I think there are several teams whose designs are more conservative than theirs (and, for that matter, the Browns’).

    • Dave | August 15, 2014 at 1:53 pm |

      The Jets home has no stripes? It has the over the shoulder stripes, inverse color TV numbers and the Jets patch at the chest.

      • Graf Zeppelin | August 16, 2014 at 12:40 pm |

        The GIANTS’ home has no stripes. GIANTS. Not Jets. Giants. Please read the comment again. It mentions the Giants, and only the Giants, not the Jets.

        …it’s hard to fathom that the Texans’ look is more conservative than, say, the Raiders or the Giants.

        Giants. Not Jets.

  • TA | August 15, 2014 at 1:23 pm |

    I suspect there are some LLWS teams that like getting the new uniforms, and some that wish to be better able to assert their local identity. But then I looked at the Little League website and saw articles that refer to the teams exclusively by the name of their region, which is absurd. I read a game recap about “Europe-Africa”, and I still don’t even know whether they are from Europe or Africa. At least ESPN tends to identify a team by its US state or specific foreign country, regardless of what it says on the uniform.

    • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 3:16 pm |

      Exactly! Or they could write, Taney (Mid-Atlantic), or South Vancouver (Canada).

    • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 8:20 pm |

      The “Europe-Africa” team is from Brno, Czech Republic. It’d be easy to add their country flag to the jersey (if they don’t do so already)

  • DenverGregg | August 15, 2014 at 1:31 pm |

    ESPN has a nifty interactive graphic depiction of all of this seasons kits for the premiership: here.

  • Mike Wissman | August 15, 2014 at 1:48 pm |

    Nice post on Taney, Morris. I found your take on their ‘Mid Atlantic’ color scheme interesting. My wife was at the parade in Williamsport and said she was thrilled the team got to wear unis similar to the Phillies 70s-80s maroon and powder blue. Agree though that the teams should not be forced to shed their identities. Corporate America rules another day.

  • Dave | August 15, 2014 at 1:52 pm |

    Is it me, or do those “muddy” shoes look like the wearer stepped in dog poo?

  • Kevin | August 15, 2014 at 2:15 pm |

    At the top of this page you see a Nike Jersey that has been modified with the schools name and an Under Armour logo. Clearly you see the “Flywire” but with the UA on the shoulder. Plus it’s neat to see the excess of some of the bigger high school programs. Unless you’re going to a Division 1 school, you’re not gonna get much better facilities after graduation.

    http://jenkstrojanfootball.com/end_zone_plans.html

  • PWalk | August 15, 2014 at 2:16 pm |

    Hey Morris,

    Could you list any more local businesses in your write up about Taney today? I get it your proud of the team and the neighborhood but come on! I know what your referencing here, life long Philly resident, but does it need mention on UW? Stick with the unicentric chat and leave the plugs for the advertisers.

    • Morris Levin | August 15, 2014 at 3:28 pm |

      PWalk-

      Community is about specific locations and names, and not general whitewashed concepts like Mid-Atlantic. This is about uniforms.

      I am confident I could have squeezed in at least sixteen or seventeen more local business names. I doubt any of the ones I did mention will see any revenue increases based upon their mentions here (let’s not flatter ourselves too much!).

  • hugh c. mcbride | August 15, 2014 at 4:21 pm |

    Mr. Levin: Excellent post today. I especially appreciated the personal perspective that you brought to the piece. Nice reminder of how the impact of unis doesn’t stop at the foul lines (or even inside the stadium).

  • Rad | August 15, 2014 at 5:05 pm |

    Does everyone see what I see? Is that matte black on the Eagles helmet or an illusion? From Twitter:

    https://twitter.com/Eagles/status/500380744179802112

    Now look at Foles’ helmet – looks different:

    https://twitter.com/Eagles/status/500382855948959744

    The Eagles are going full Jaguar. Just what I wanted. More BFBS, please…

  • Wolpertinger | August 15, 2014 at 6:11 pm |

    Re: Eagles…Looks like their Midnight Green jerseys won’t be ready early in the season. Production issues with Nike. See here: https://twitter.com/ZBerm/status/500380315047952384

    • Simply Moono | August 15, 2014 at 8:29 pm |

      This baffles me.

      Now bear in mind, I know nothing about what actually goes into developing colors for Nike or any company, and I don’t claim to be educated in any facet of what goes into finalizing a physical uniform.

      That being said, if Nike has the ability to imprint and sublimate the frickin’ Taj Mahal on basketball shooter sleeves in greater detail than the actual structure itself, and can make a uniform 14% sexier, 41.87% glow-in-the-dark…ier, in addition to announcing the switchover to Nike from Reebok back in October of 2010, and having the uniforms ready by April of 2012, a full year-and-a-half after the announcement, and we are a month or so away from the regular season starting, and Nike has used the word “innovation” so many times, you’d think they invented the word, AND they have the green cuffs and collars ready for the black top, you’re telling me that they couldn’t develop the color for two seasons into the new deal, and now that they ARE developing it, they’re still ironing out the kinks to the point that the Eagles won’t even get the tops until later on into the regular season?

      …GG, Swooshie.

    • Phil Hecken | August 15, 2014 at 9:33 pm |

      If only, as Hugh McBride said on the Twitter hours ago, the NFL had published a schedule so Nike would know when to have the jerseys ready.

  • Wolpertinger | August 15, 2014 at 6:14 pm |
  • DJ | August 15, 2014 at 8:13 pm |

    That’s new… the White Sox painted their logo in white on the grass behind home plate at the Cell.

  • jason | August 16, 2014 at 8:54 pm |

    I really enjoyed this take on Taney little league and Philly. As a new Philly resident since may I can attest to how the city is divided into little neighborhoods that every one takes pride in such as torresdale for mine.