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Mets Replace Stupid Sleeve Ad with New Stupid Sleeve Ad

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When the Mets unveiled their sleeve advertisement just prior to this year’s home opener on April 6, team owner Steve Cohen quickly said that the patch design would be revised because its red/white color scheme was too Phillies-esque. The patch wasn’t changed for the balance of that homestand, nor was it changed for the team’s subsequent west coast road trip. But with the Mets back in New York for the start of another homestand last night, the ad was redesigned:

Obviously, the color change isn’t the only adjustment that’s been made. The new ad is also much smaller (although the type size seems to be the same). Here’s an on-field comparison:

So at least the new one doesn’t occupy as much real estate as the old one, and it doesn’t make the entire sleeve look stiff and uncomfortable like the old one did, although it’s arguably more visually prominent. Naturally, I hate both of them, but you knew that already, so let’s skip that part and instead ask the following questions that I haven’t heard anyone else asking:

  • If Cohen didn’t like the initial ad design, why did it end up on the uniforms to begin with? I mean, he presumably signed off on the original design, right?
  • More specifically, if he wanted the ad to be rendered in Mets colors, why didn’t he insist on that in the first place? If he wanted the ad to be smaller, without all that extra space, why didn’t he insist on that in the first place? Was he involved in the initial process or wasn’t he?
  • Was the initial ad patch a last-minute rush job that they scrambled to come up with in time for the home opener without actually thinking about the design?

Just askin’.

Meanwhile: As a Mets fan,  I think the idea that the original ad was rendered in “Phillies colors” is silly. Lots of other teams wear white and red (Nats, Reds, Bosox, etc.), and trying to use an ad patch to gin up a Mets/Phils rivalry is kinda sad. The new ad is a better fit with the Mets’ color scheme, obviously, but that’s a matter of chromatics, not rivalries.

The Mets are the second MLB team so far this season to revise their sleeve ad. The Diamondbacks initially unveiled a big, black square and then quickly streamlined it. But that change was made in spring training, not during the regular season:




ITEM! Let’s Geek Out Over This 1999 NFL Style Guide

Last week’s Premium article about an early-1990s MLB Style Guide was such a hit that I’m following up this week with a detailed look at another rare item from my library: the 1999 NFL Style Guide. It’s filled with stuff like this:

I’ve photographed every page of the guide and provided commentary on each team’s entry, just like I did for the MLB guide last week. You can read the first part of the resulting article here. In order to read the entire thing, you’ll need to become a paying subscriber to my Substack (which will also give you access to my full Substack/Bulletin archives). Thanks!



Purp Walk Reminder

In case you missed it earlier this week, I’ve firmed up all the plans for this year’s Purple Amnesty Day, including the new T-shirt design (which you’ll need to order this week if you want to receive it in time for Purp Walk). This year’s festivities, like last year’s, will include a live event — this time in North Carolina. Full details here.



Cans of the Day

Do you want your popcorn to be as explosive as TNT, or do you just want it to go, “bang-o”? Either way, it’s interesting that both of these cans style “pop corn” as two words.

Comments (48)

    I’m not keen on ad patches, but I can tolerate them a little more when they are team colors. This is certainly better than the ADT patches being the only legible thing on the Marlins uniform.

    I agree, when rendered in team colors, the patches blend in more, and so it’s ALMOST possible to ignore them, and imagine that they aren’t even there!

    yes, totally agree with you Joe… but the designer/marketer in me says that if i am paying a premium for ad space on a uniform where it is NOT feature large and prominently like in soccer (for example) then I def want something that makes it MUCH easier to recognize my company’s identity. Therefore, the logo in my company’s colors.

    Don’t get me wrong…I despise the ads (not as much as Paul) but I am just looking at it from the entity’s point of view. Hope that makes sense. Ads still suck though. lol

    Agreed on both counts. First and foremost ad patches suck regardless of size, location and color.

    But the original ones were in New York Presbyterian’s colors. The original patch was pretty egregious from a design perspective due to it placing a small logo inside the maximum ad size.

    I’m reading between the lines and thinking there must have been some negotiation between NY Presbyterian and Cohen to render the ad in Mets colors.

    Shrinking the size was likely them realizing that the original was too large/too much blank space from a design standpoint.

    Great point. I have no knowledge of NYP’s branding but I thought that the first version employed their preferred colors and word mark, which the Mets had to accept due to the money being paid. I did not think NYP would change it so willingly based on owner and fan reaction.

    I’m going to counter with this – I’d rather see the D-Back’s (updated) patch that isn’t team colors, but is trimmed down so that it looks more like something you’d historically see as a patch on the side of a MLB sleeve than the new Mets patch which, while in team colors and smaller is both so boldly colored and also such a “standardized” rectangle that it stands out way more and distracts the eye.

    The only redeeming thing about the Mets ad patch is that it is team colors.

    There is nothing good about even the revised patch. But given it is now in team colors, and the nature of the logo / words being small and not immediately recognizable, in game when not looking directly at it, if you didn’t know what it was already, it could just appear to be some sort of team patch, like an anniversary or honorific addition to the uniform.

    Being thankful for small favors, perhaps teams have realized it looked awful for the patches to take up the maximum amount of ad space using empty space?

    As a Phillies fan I keep holding out hope that rumored ad is local convenience store chain Wawa. If I have to look at a jersey ad, I can deal with a locally beloved brand (even if their sandwich quality has gone to crap since they stopped doing in house deli slicing years ago) and if it is just their goose logo with no words…. it could be a lot worse (cough Comcast cough).

    I can envision Aramark taking up residence in the sleeve number space, but I’d settle…rather, would loathe less…a company with a more local flavor, like TastyKake, MAB Paint (both of which have had a long business relationship/promotion history with the Phils), Rita’s Wooder Ice, or AC(A)ME Markets.

    Yeah, Yuengling is one of a few local brands that has partnered with the team for years that has enough local love that would make the ad less awful. If we are condemned to having uni ads, popular local brands like Wawa, Tastycake, and Yuengling are infinitely preferable to national financial, tech, or pharma companies that happened to be based in Philly.

    It really ought to be a food brand, just for *ahem* palatability. Wawa’s the clear gold standard here, but Tastykake and Turkey Hill (especially in combination with a fresh advertising push behind Graham Slam) would also both be acceptable.

    That new Mets patch is much better than that first one. I don’t like seeing ads on the uniforms — or huge maker’s marks, for that matter. But this one is better.

    Simple answer: They both suck. It’s like choosing whether you want to die by a gun or knife. A little surprised the richest owner in MLB didn’t use this ad patch crap as a wonderful PR opportunity. “I love the Mets and would never think about soiling our uniforms with an ad patch. We will be ad free!”

    So far you can’t not like Uncle Steve, but first and foremost he is a businessman. Now if I owned the team :..

    Ambivalent. As a fan, wish NYM/Cohen could have been among the franchises not jumping into the ad patch era on Opening Day. It’s a small market move no matter how you look at it.

    But since a patch was inevitable, better a hospital (with a baseball history backstory) than, say, an energy conglomerate. (The ballpark name seemed to preclude a bank.)

    And while version 1 was totally off the carts bad, this one at least integrates a little with the overall uni.

    Now that this is out of the way, I am fascinated to find out whether the Yankees will go with a patch and if so which “partner” they will go with.

    “As a fan, wish NYM/Cohen could have been among the franchises not jumping into the ad patch era on Opening Day.”

    Actually, their first two series (on the road) were ad-free. It wasn’t until the Home Opener that they debuted the monstrosity.

    I always say that I think of it as “City Field” and then it really works for NYC.

    Maybe they thought the bigger, uglier patch would be so poorly received that we would actually applaud the changes? Either way, we are truly living in the stupid times.

    Why is no one talking about the fact that the fans apparently forced this change? The “Phillies colors” charge came from them, right?

    How much more of an effort – and this one wasn’t even organized – might it take to end ad patches completely?

    Great point. And whether or not “Phillies colors” was accurate (it’s not, as Paul points out), it’s what got him to change his mind and make it a better patch. It would’ve been fine to keep the white/red and make it smaller, but this is an upgrade if they choose to have an ad.

    My guess is that Cohen’s initial participation in this was initially in the dollars and not the aesthetics. At least the Met’s were not tone death to the fans and revised that monstrosity of a patch. Not all logo’s will work like the Diamondbacks. But at least this blends in more.

    It’s ironic after seeing how egregious these patches are that the Nike swoosh seems like a rather modest intrusion now.

    Paul – I’m with you – a Mets fan that despises ads on jerseys… but given it’s the reality these days, I don’t think it’s all that bad. It’s small, on the sleeve and it’s in Mets colors – blends in (from a distance, you could have told me it was a memorial patch – like the “Ya Gotta Believe” one for Tug – and I wouldn’t have even thought twice). Given the potential for disaster, I think this is a solid double.
    (What I will still NEVER accept, however, is the Nike swoosh on the front of the jersey – that’s 1000x worse than this)

    Any chance Cohen let the original ad patch go through as a bait-and-switch? People were going to be upset regardless, so by now making it smaller and in Mets colors fans will be more receptive to it than if they unveiled the revised version in the first place. Lesser of two evils.

    You have that the Mets are the first to redesign their patch, but then put how they’re the second to revise it. I’m assuming you mean that they were the first to give a complete overhaul, rather then just a tweak. Is this correct?

    The Cohen questions are pretty simple in that he probably never thought much about it till it was on the field. Likely shown a mock-up of it, agreed on the price, and said “Go”. But its a different matter once you see it on the field and hear whatever chatter maybe filtering its way up from the stands / dugout. Those giant white blocks looked so awkward and the NYP text was miniscule within.

    Even if ad patches are by the default a negative, there is better and worse ways to do them, and this revised patch is MUCH better.

    The N.Y. and Ariz. patch revisions are a big improvement, even if it is in the sense that having only two flat tires is better than having four flat tires.

    …even if it is in the sense that having only two flat tires is better than having four flat tires.

    That’s a good line! Might have to use that myself sometime.

    Good one. I also like Don Cherry’s reaction to two bad choices after his Bruins lost the Habs in the playoffs. When asked if he would be rooting for the Canadiens or the Rangers he said, that’s like asking if I want syphilis or gonorrhea.

    As a Met fan who pays close attention to aesthetics, it is a huge improvement in color and size, but now will be clearly seen from the centerfield camera. Of course, you can’t make out the writing in anything other than a closeup. What is hardest to accept is the team logo patch on the wrong sleeve for righties. If that were not messed up, I could eventually block the ad out in my mind.

    With the size and colors against the white background it feels like a bunch of patches for the lab jackets at NY Presbyterian were dropped off before opening day. None of it really makes any sense, the colors how small the font is on the giant square patch. It really feels like NYP was like “oh yea we have patches with our logo we can just drop them off” none of it feels designed for the space.

    Interesting point about the weird inclination to refer to a red and white patch as Phillies colors. Is anyone in Cincinnati complaining that the Reds’ blue and white grocery chain ad patch is Cubs colors?

    Ad patch revision is huge as far as overall uni appearance. All teams should do the same..
    A big BLUE Kroger on the Red’s sleeve? Nope.

    To be very clear, I’m with all of you in HATING the ad patches. But as an Astros fan, since it’s here to stay whether I like it or not, can they pretty please, with a big nice cherry on top, make their Oxy patch at least 1/3rd smaller and rendered in team colors? Such an eyesore as is.

    The smaller patch is an improvement, but it still sucks. Why cant team have ad patches in a round (baseball) or diamond (gasp, baseball diamond!) shape instead of these gawky squares? The only decent ad patch I do not mind (I hate ad patches) are the Padres Motorola patch. My rant for the day!

    “Was the initial ad patch a last-minute rush job that they scrambled to come up with in time for the home opener without actually thinking about the design?”

    I think the answer here is an obvious “yes”. I’m guessing, from all the early ad patch debacles, that MLB decided on a standard size patch they wanted adopted (huge, square), without taking into account extremely horizontal wordmarks (like New York-Presbyterian’s).

    While I agree that advertising on uniforms still sucks, I’d argue that making these patches a suitable shape and color is both more aesthetically pleasing and just plain better advertising.

    Mets new ad patch mildly less annoying on alternate blue jersey this evening

    Hey Walt!

    Paul & I briefly discussed this earlier. We’re surprised they didn’t render the patch in orange and white for use on the blue jerseys.

    The NYP ad is now slightly less annoying but this looks-too-much-like-the-Phillies argument is nonsense. If, for instance, Heinz, Kellogs or Avis would have offered more money but insisted on a red and white patch it would have been right there on the Mets uniform.

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