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EXCLUSIVE: First Look at MLB’s 2023 Fourth of July Caps

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Major League Baseball hasn’t yet unveiled this year’s caps for Independence Day, but an industry source has provided me with images of this year’s designs for the Cubs and Tigers, as seen above. For now, those are the only two caps he’s shared with me, although I hope to have more to show you in the near future. The images were photographed directly off of a computer monitor, which explains the glare and the slight distortion of the caps’ shapes.

According to my source, all the caps this year are navy and red. And as you can see, they have a home plate-shaped side emblem featuring the team’s city and “USA” (although the Blue Jays will presumably have something different). Can’t wait to see how they squeeze city names like “San Francisco” and “Philadelphia” into that space.

The design approach is very similar to the format used in 2018, when all the caps were either navy or red with flag-desecration team logos, just like this year. But in 2018 the teams had their respective league logos on the side of the cap and also wore star-spangled jerseys. Here’s what the Cubs and Tigers wore that year, so you can compare the 2018 designs to this year’s:

As you can see, the stars/stripes patterns on the cap logos have been adjusted slightly this year, but it’s pretty much the same thing as in 2018.

Can’t remember what your favorite team wore in 2018? Here’s a graphic that put together at the time, just to refresh your memory:

Of course, if a team wore red (or navy) in 2018, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll do so again this year. The Cardinals, for example, could just as easily wear red this time around, and Atlanta might go with blue.

July 4 falls on a Tuesday this year. It’s not yet clear whether teams will wear these caps only on the holiday or for the entire four-day “weekend.”

Obviously, this is all just merch-dumpery, but that’s the uni-verse we now live in. At least these are less garish than last year’s embarrassments.



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Can of the Day

Simple, basic, classic — what’s not to like?

Comments (26)

    The Independence Day caps are a dramatic upgrade from last year!

    I generally like the caps for this holiday, but simpler is definitely better. Last year, and the years with the printed stars, look like a mess. But the 2021 designs were wonderful, and I really like these, too!

    For Philadelphia and San Francisco they could use Philly and San Fran respectively.

    “San Fran” is generally considered a no-no among Bay Area people… which probably means that’s exactly what they’ll use.

    Ugh, no thanks to either. Born & raised here and I hate the term “Philly” in general, it doesn’t belong on a uniform.

    Weren’t the 2018 caps the ones that originally had the opening words to the Constitution under the brim, that you pointed out and basically shamed them into removing? link

    On the plus side, it appears that the Stars and Stripes patterns are not a template but are customized for each logo. That’s a huge upgrade over the 2018 edition.

    I have yet to see an example of red hat for a team with no red in their color set that gets me excited or interested in seeing how it looks on the field.
    That said, I’m interested to see how the Pirates hat looks and am hoping it’s in navy this time.

    I was hoping to find some consistency about how they assign Red vs, Blue. Blue home, Red away? Blue AL, Red NL? Doesn’t look like that’s the case. However, it seems like each matchup is Red vs Blue according to the picture in this post and cross-referenced with the matchups from that day link

    “although the Blue Jays will presumably have something different”
    A reminder of how stupid this on field promo is, league wide, and shoehorning in the team that isn’t in the US.
    I’m all for putting a flag patch on the jerseys and/or cap on Independence Day, and also would be a sucker for star spangled team gear, not uniforms, (if I still was wasting money on new team gear), but this cap program is well past its expiration date. Between forcing Toronto into the program, and the need for “new” but derivative looks each year, give it a rest.

    Why not call these “National Pride” caps or something similar, since both nations’ nominal “birthdays” are within 3 days of each other. Now that every team plays every other team, MLB could schedule Washington to visit Toronto on July 1 and dress them up in Canada Day Expos fauxbacks, at least until the reborn Expos take the field.

    “Why not call these “National Pride” caps or something similar”

    What could possibly go wrong?

    I’ll never understand why the Tigers choose the red version of the 4th of July hat when they have no red in their color scheme. Teams with no red or blue like the Pirates, Giants or A’s have to pick, but the Tigers are a blue team.

    These are pretty good. I’ve never bought a holiday cap before but I may just this summer. I do think MLB should just go with the caps though, holiday jerseys are too much.

    Does it bother anyone else that the Tigers’ logo has stripes above the field of stars? Just me?

    I strongly prefer that! Not specifically stripes above stars, but stars and stripes used within discrete logo elements with thought and intention, rather than making it look like the logo was cut out of an actual flag.

    Time for the annual “Everything about these caps will clash with whatever the A’s/Padres/maybe Rockies wear since they wear neither blue nor red” holiday cap!

    I come from a country with a different history than the USA. We celebrate King’s Day (his actual birthday) and have no Parliament Day (even though we have a democracy in which our King does not have a decisive or political role). We would never think of wearing and selling soccer uniforms (our equivalent of baseball uniforms) celebrating the King or the parliament. It would be totally ridiculous to us. The same with soccer uniforms celebrating independence day, the armed forces or Father’s/Mother’s Day. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

    As a fan of a team that doesn’t have red or blue as part of the color scheme, I’ve never liked this gimmick. Whatever Paul’s feelings on my Rockies’ purple, I’m sure he agrees purple and black work better than purple and red!

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