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Baltimore Orioles Debut City Connect Uniforms

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A good Saturday morning, Uni Watchers — I hope everyone has had a good week.

Last evening, the Baltimore Orioles’ City Connect (CC) uniforms made their on-field debut. They unveiled these on Monday, and Paul had the coverage — all the uni deets are here. As an added bonus, longtime Uni Watch reader Andrew Cosentino traveled to the Orioles Team Store, to check out the scene and gauge the fan reaction (you can read that report here). As it turns out, Andrew and his cousin Mario attended last evening’s game, and we’ll hear from him with some in-stadium reporting a bit further down in this article. (In the photo below, Mario is on the left and Andrew is on the right.)

Now then.

As with all uniforms, and particularly CC uniforms, one must withhold final judgment on how a uniform looks until it’s seen on the field. And of course, with many of the CC uniforms, Nike/MLB’s tortured storytelling is necessary to make sense out of some uniform elements. But as was the case with CInCY, the storytelling wasn’t really necessary to judge the unis on-field. And, like CInCy, the Orioles’ CC unis looked almost exactly on the field as we would expect based on the unveiling.

As we saw at the unveiling, there wasn’t much color in the unis: pretty much black and white with a dash of orange. Most of the color in the jersey was on the inside, and also at the top of the CC socks. In that photoshoot, some players opted to keep their sleeves down and top buttons buttoned, while others were unbuttoned and showed off rolled up sleeves, giving off hints of color. My biggest concern at the unveiling was how many players were going to lean into that rolled sleeve/unbuttoned shirt “blue collar” look, which it almost seemed these jerseys were designed for. Indeed, the team’s pre-game tweet leaned into that trope.

So — how did the players “get to work” last night? It was an interesting mix. Not everyone did the rolled sleeves thing, although many did, and there was an almost-equal mix of high-cuffers and pajama-style.

As you can see in that last photo, players who showed about as much “color” as possible also wore some pretty bright compression sleeves (I guess matching the many colors on the inside of the jersey). You’ll also note that while Baltimore (so far) doesn’t have an ad patch, the bespoke “B” logo appeared on different sides of the jersey — depending upon a player’s handedness — indicating an ad probably isn’t far off. Interestingly enough (and thankfully), I didn’t see any players with top jersey buttons unbuttoned, even though that might have added an extra splash of color on an otherwise very black uniform.

As we saw at the unveiling, the word “BALTIMORE” (in a distressed font that was almost impossible to detect at any distance) was in large white letters on the front, with NOB in orange and white numbers. Predictably, those who chose to wear their pants uncuffed looked very plain.

Although the uniforms didn’t seem to get an overwhelmingly positive reaction from UW readers, one of the things most people liked (myself included), was the stylized “B” logo the team wore on the cap (although most of us probably wish it were rendered in orange). True to form, it did look really good.

That same “B” logo was also worn on the sleeve (which side depended on a player’s handedness). CInCY did this with their CC unis as well, and while some don’t like repeating the logos on the cap and sleeve, I don’t mind it at all.

If you look at the above photo, you’ll get a good look at the black/gray “camo-esque” striping on the (non-rolled) sleeve, which is also repeated on the patch. That same black/gray trim was also used as striping on the black pants.

Here’s a closeup of the CC socks — normally I’d like the socks to be a contrasting color from the pants, but with that colorful design, I think they look better as a fat stripe around the shin/calf. It adds a nice, natural break between pants and socks. I was NOT a fan of the “BAL” in huge white letters down towards the ankle.

As always, OPACY looked gorgeous, and Andrew captured this beautiful shot of the field from his seats.

And as with all CC unis, the team created a special helmet mimicking the cap.

The groundskeepers did a nice job of mowing the new, customized “B” logo onto the field.

One of the issues with the CInCY CC’s was the confusion they somewhat caused — due to their being mono-black — in differentiating between the players and umpires from any distance. That was certainly true here, in a shot captured by Andrew.

Overall, the unis were about as expected, and — while I would not normally advocate for players to roll up their sleeves and “get to work” — in this instance, the players who did so added some sorely needed color to an otherwise very black uniform. In fact, those who wore non-black compression sleeves with rolled cuffs and CC socks, didn’t look as bad as I had otherwise thought they might.

They still ain’t great…but at least some of the players were able to add a bit of sorely-needed color.

You can see more photos here

And here are a couple videos: in one a full black uni and in the second a mix, with those showing color looking much better (at least IMO):

And now, here with some first-person commentary is Andrew Cosentino, who was at the ballpark last night.

• They used the neighborhood theme color blocks throughout the scoreboard. Not only on the main scoreboard, but also on the out of town scoreboard.

• The Orioles players also were wearing the CC uniforms in their scoreboard photos. On a related note, all of the Orioles graphics had the CC “B” logo.

• My cousin, Mario, pointed out that the CC uniforms matched the umpire uniforms.

• As expected, different shoes make it look very different.

• The uniforms look much better with high socks. It breaks up the monochrome.

• Some players (Cedric Mullins and Anthony Santander) wore purple and yellow arm sleeves.

• Other players wore all black and long pants (Adley Rutchman) and it looked bad.

• The all-black CC uniforms gave me some serious Ravens all-black vibes.

• They played a lot of Baltimore club music, which was amazing.

• A lot of people definitely showed up already wearing CC gear, but a lot of people were buying stuff. I saw quite a few people (myself included) walking into the stadium with jerseys and hats.

• The main store was absolutely packed. I don’t mind crowds, but it was too much for me. Even in the satellite stores, a lot of people were buying CC gear.

• I would say that people were definitely excited about the uniforms. I know it’s biased because people going to the game would inherently be interested in the CC gear, but there were more people wearing CC stuff than I expected.

• The attendance was much lighter than I would have expected tonight, but I credit that to the long holiday weekend. People in Baltimore tend to get away for long weekends rather than have people come to them.

• I ran into my friends Kyle (left) and Jon (right) at the game. They loved the City Connect uniforms so much that they both bought jerseys and hats!

[The Orioles also had some amazing artwork inside the stadium. Andrew has a description of that as well — PH]

The murals were oddly one of my favorite parts of the CC experience. Several years ago, the Orioles started partnering with local artists to create murals throughout Camden Yards. My favorite one is a tribute to the many Negro league teams that once played in Baltimore.

The two murals for the CC uniforms prominently reside near home plate. Yes, they’re near bathrooms, but it’s a completely blank canvas that would otherwise be plastered with generic Orioles logos. The two pieces, A Summer Day on the Stoop and Baltimore Blues and Hues, were both by SHAN Wallace. I actually didn’t know that she did the murals until I saw them in person and instantly recognized her style. It has a collage aesthetic to it that I really enjoy.

A Summer Day on the Stoop

Baltimore Blues and Hues

As easy as it is to be cynical and jaded about the Nike money grab, the murals are a rare instance where a local sports team actually reaches out to a local artist to contribute to the experience.

Here are some of the Orioles murals throughout the years.

There is also a Baltimore Sun article about the murals, but there is a paywall. This is probably the best excerpt. As a note, Gaia is my favorite muralist in Baltimore, so the fact that the Orioles have him as their consultant tells me all that I need to know.

“Wallace said she was first approached by Gaia, an artist and muralist who is a consultant for the Orioles, to set the collaboration in motion. After being shown the City Connect jerseys, Wallace designed two digital collages in just a little over a week. The collages were printed and displayed on vinyl, which she said is well suited for the elements at the ballpark.

“Wallace’s photographs, murals and other works of art center themes of queerness, Blackness and history, she said. Baltimore also acts as the setting and inspiration for her work — her Orioles mural being the latest example.”

Finally: here is my personal take on the CC uniforms. The uniforms aren’t great. They’re underwhelming. I get that. But it’s still a program that generated a lot of buzz around the city. Moreover, I think the Orioles really did go out of their way to reach out to local artists. Sure, I wish the artists created the uniforms instead of just contributing to the CC experience, but it felt more genuine than I expected. For example, the murals were great. Also, “You Can’t Clip These Wings” was created by Baltimore poet Kondwani Fidel. Plus, it’s more fun to just dive into the experience rather than be jaded! Here is the video I’m referring to.

Thanks Andrew — for the photos and observations and the great backstory on those murals! Here’s a link to Andrew’s IG post on the game.

Readers? What did you think of the Baltimore CC uniforms?


Guess the Game from the Uniform

Based on the suggestion of long-time reader/contributor Jimmy Corcoran, we’ve introduced a new “game” on Uni Watch, which is similar to the popular “Guess the Game from the Scoreboard” (GTGFTS), only this one asked readers to identify the game based on the uniforms worn by teams.

Like GTGFTS, readers will be asked to guess the date, location and final score of the game from the clues provided in the photo. Sometimes the game should be somewhat easy to ascertain, while in other instances, it might be quite difficult. There will usually be a visual clue (something odd or unique to one or both of the uniforms) that will make a positive identification of one and only one game possible. Other times, there may be something significant about the game in question, like the last time a particular uniform was ever worn (one of Jimmy’s original suggestions). It’s up to YOU to figure out the game and date.

Today’s GTGFTU comes from Charlie Schick.

Good luck and please post your guess/answer in the comments below.


Guess the Game from the Scoreboard

Guess The Game…

…From The Scoreboard

Today’s scoreboard comes from Scotty Corolla.

The premise of the game (GTGFTS) is simple: I’ll post a scoreboard and you guys simply identify the game depicted. In the past, I don’t know if I’ve ever completely stumped you (some are easier than others).

Here’s the Scoreboard. In the comments below, try to identify the game (date & location, as well as final score). If anything noteworthy occurred during the game, please add that in (and if you were AT the game, well bonus points for you!):

Please continue sending these in! You’re welcome to send me any scoreboard photos (with answers please), and I’ll keep running them.


Uni Tweet of the Day

We bitch about the CC unis, but we should be grateful it hasn’t come to this…yet


And finally...

…that’s it for today — big thanks to Andrew Cosentino for adding some in-person perspective on the Orioles CC unis!

Everyone have a good Saturday, and I’ll catch you tomorrow.

Till then…



Comments (31)

    Thank you so much for letting me participate, Phil! It was really fun being a “reporter” last night. I always tell Paul this, but the Uni Watch community is so important to me. I absolutely love my daily ritual of reading Uni Watch while eating lunch. Thanks again!

    Your report gave me a deeper appreciation of the O’s uniforms than I was ready to have; a sterling example of all parties doing their homework and sweating the details. If I didn’t like Baltimore’s CC uniforms before, I do now.

    Great report. Not a fan of this CC uniform, but I am impressed by what the club has done around it with the scoreboeard and the beautiful murals. Ans I love the hat: best CC hat so far.

    GTGFTU is October 4, 2022 when NY Mets beat Washington Nationals 8 – 0. Photo is from bottom of the 6th when Francisco Alvarez led off with a home run. He was greeted at the plate by Mark Vientiane.

    I think you’re right, except it’s Vientos on the left. I assume that’s just a typo. Alvarez switched numbers this year.

    GTGFTS is July 13, 1998 when the Milwaukee Brewers defeated the Philadelphia Phillies by a score of 4 – 2. The game was played at Milwaukee County Stadium. Doug Granville is leading off the game for the Phillies in the top of the 1st inning.

    That would have been Doug Glanville leading off for the Phils. He’s well-known enough to get his spelling corrected.

    Another apology is needed here. I should have checked that, especially since Doug played for and does some broadcast work for my Chicago Cubs.

    Not related to the scoreboard, but those post-Motre Bame/pre-restaurant chain-looking Brewers uniforms sadly didn’t stick around long. Such a great look, gone too soon.
    And sorry…but those O’s CC’s can’t be gone soon enough.

    These CC uniforms are meh and overhated. I’d much rather see the directed towards the Orioles controlling the Nationals broadcast rights. The deadbeats won a corrupt bargain and still won’t pay the Nats, fighting in court for the better part of a decade to avoid paying. Bad owners, bad franchise.

    The B on the cap would look great in orange though.

    The multi colored accents give a Miami vibe . The uniforms are OK but with all of the city’s rich history (ft mchenry, the Baltimore or Maryland flag to chose from , the actual colors of the Baltimore Oriole bird ) we just expected more

    I love love love the O’S city connects. I live in Baltimore City and I’m shocked at how authentic the sentiment behind the jerseys feel to me. I feel like the obvious move would’ve been the tourism stuff (crabs, charm city, monuments), but that’s not exactly what residents identify with. I’m not trying to speak for all residents of the city— I know very well not everyone likes them. But I think they’re great, particularly as fan-wear. One last thought: I think most of the Nike “story” elements are hokum. I wrote a Twitter thread where I theorize the two main influences are the “Baltimore Vs Y’all” tshirt and local art (specifically graffiti alley in station north). See the link for visuals:


    I tend to agree. Watching them on the on the field changed my perspective. I still don’t inherently love the uniforms, but they feel very Baltimore. It’s WAY better than if they just slapped on some crabs and a Maryland flag pattern.

    Agreed. They definitely grew on me, and for the first time, I really think Nike nailed it with the “storytelling”. I may swing by the store to get a hat (I already ordered a jersey).

    Some subtle changes that could have have added needed pop to the Uni:
    A.) orange trim to “BALTIMORE” (I know it would take away from the “story”)
    B.) an orange “B” (or maybe even multicolored link)
    C.) maybe a slightly smaller, arched “BALTIMORE” with a color number (maybe orange, or maybe the color of the player’s choosing based on one of the colors inside the jersey. And yea, that would mean non-uniformity on the uniform).

    “Plus, it’s more fun to just dive into the experience rather than be jaded!”


    Andrew- thanks for sharing your perspective as both a uni-watcher and a Baltimorean(?). Even if the uniforms aren’t the best design, I’m glad they captured and leaned into your city’s pride.

    Thanks for the feedback, Michael and Joseph! I was trying to keep things positive instead of being cynical.

    I don’t get the “mosaic” of colors, even with their storytelling. But with this, I’d prefer the socks being mosaic all the way, and not just the top. For that matter, compression sleeves would be better if they were also mosaic. I’d also like the white belt to be mosaic. And yes, the block “BALTIMORE” on the jersey would look better if it matched the script B on the hat.

    Here is the map that they’re referring to:
    I actually used a similar map for my wedding seating chart! Every table was a different neighborhood.

    The better Orioles uniform is in the background picture of Andrew’s 2 friends. Scott McGregor’s old Jersey.

    Great job, everyone, on today’s post! I love your thorough analysis, Phil, and I love Andrew’s first-hand report. Like walter, I have a bit more of an appreciation for these uniforms after seeing them in more context – especially when combined with the murals in the stadium. I’m still not in love with them – kind of like I can I can appreciate the concept behind them but don’t love the final execution. Like a teacher grading tests, I’m inclined to give them a B- instead of the D I was leaning toward because they showed their work.

    That hat really is nice, I suspected they’ll sell a lot of them and you might even see it or one with an orange B become some kind of alt road cap.

    The jerseys your friends are wearing almost look gray, I’m assuming that’s a lighting/flash thing

    The uniforms aren’t great. They’re underwhelming. I get that. But it’s still a program that generated a lot of buzz around the city.

    It’s like a lot of modern art. It’s more about selling the sizzle than it is about the content.

    And if you like sizzle, that’s OK. Enjoy.
    It’s not my taste, but at least it’s far superior to Cincy’s CC. At least you could read this one.

    Really appreciate the write up and photos! Seeing them on the field gives me a slightly greater appreciation for them.

    And this does lend some credence to my suspicion that MLB/Nike doesn’t really care about anything beyond how a specific CC uniform is received in the home city. Seems like, by that metric, the uniforms have been a success. Have any of the CC unis not been a hit in their home city?

    “MLB/Nike doesn’t really care about anything beyond how a specific CC uniform is received in the home city”

    Well, aside from being a blatent cash grab/merch dump, the whole raison d’être for the uniform is to City “connect.” So, yeah, the whole thing designed purposely to offer fans of a city a specific gimmick (or three) to get them to part ways with their money. But think about it. You’re NOT a fan of “X” team; you’re probably not going to be buying any merch for that team, so why would you want to own a CC jersey (or cap) for a team you don’t root for? But say you ARE a fan of “X” team; you may own a few jerseys and t-shirts for that team. The CC uni allows you to spend an additional $450 for gear for that club, which you might not otherwise have purchased. I think that may be doubly true if said CC jersey is universally panned. Fans might buy said jersey just to say F-U to the haters.

    I don’t care about sales of jerseys to fans, but from all that MLB has said about the program, it’s extremely “popular” (meaning sales are good). So, yeah, by that metric the program itself is a success. How teams look on the field of play is of no concern, so long as the jerseys & caps sell.

    O’s CC’s are actually pretty cool as far as CC’s go (not a fan of the program in general). If I were a fan of theirs’ I would 100% buy that hat. The uniform is over-hated but the hat is downright nice.

    Only thing I would change is, that hat with the B in orange would make it their best hat period.

    At least the Orioles cash-grab uniforms are boring bad instead of ghastly bad. (They could have ended up with something like that WWE alternate the Ham Fighters are wearing.) Nikefication is going to eat MLB and there isn’t a damned thing we can do about it.
    I, for one, will not spend a single penny on the Orioles cash-grab kit. YMMV.

    Whoever is responsible for green lighting the City Connect uniform debacle ought to be run out of town on a rail. The only thing that’s uniform about them is they’re uniformly ugly.

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