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BREAKING: Pirates City Connect Uniform Leaks

The Pirates aren’t due to unveil their City Connect uniform for another two weeks, but we got a hint last month via a T-shirt leak. In case you’ve forgotten what that looked like, here are the T-shirt pics:

It appears that the “PGH” T-shirt is indeed based on the team’s City Connect jersey, because a source has just provided me with a photo showing Pirates shortstop Oneil Cruz and a teammate apparently taking part in a photo shoot to promote the CC uni. Take a look:

The front and back of the jersey appear to match up with what we saw on the T-shirt. The yellow jersey will apparently be worn with black pants (a real CC specialty) and a yellow cap with a black brim.

My source did not take the photo but knows the person who did.

This will be the final CC uniform to be released this season. It’s currently scheduled to be unveiled on June 22, and to make its on-field debut on June 27.

Comments (50)

    Yikes. I know there is historical precedent for the black pants paired with a yellow top, but that is not a good look. It is made much worse with the PGH. Is there a real reason why they feel the need to go with the three letter abbreviations and other gimmicky designations? There is no way that is more attractive than a new or throwback font/script that just says Pirates or Pittsburgh.

    Nike’s “Don’t make the City Connect pants black” challenge (impossible)

    I’ve had a fondness for Pittsburgh since I visited there a few years ago and got the throwback yellow jersey with my name on the back (a bit cringe for an adult, but it’s mostly for the pun). I don’t love these unis, but I’m glad they went with yellow.

    For what it’s worth, I don’t think that’s cringe. I got one with my family’s name and the number of people in my family on it. (Kinda like Jackson 5.) It’s fun. You like it. Don’t let other people’s tastes alter how you have harmless fun.

    Obnoxious City Initials Plastered on chest… check
    Black Pants
    Overwhelming negative reaction
    Yep .. must be a legit Nike Shitty .. sorry City Connect uniform

    I think you just coined the new term from these money-grabs the Nike Shitty Connect series

    Not exactly cutting edge. Do they know the Pirates wore yellow over black pretty regularly in 1977-1984?

    I think the fact that we’re surprised by any actual connection to the team previously tells you everything you need to know about the CC campaign.

    They didn’t go too far, I like it. Yellow-over-black is cool for Pittsburgh. I don’t mind the abbreviated names, that can be classic in its own right.

    I get it, the font has to be from the future. But aside from that…

    They definitely are reminiscent of the bumble bee unis. The hats are cool. Don’t think the Pirates ever wore that exact hat. In the early 70’s they wore a similar hat, but in mustard yellow. Then they wore a similar hat, but in pillbox form.

    “Pgh.” is the standard abbreviation for the city. (“Pitt” is the university, and “PIT” is the airport.)

    I’m not a fan of abbreviations on jerseys, but PGH is much better than PIT.

    Beat me to it,

    I’d rather have it look a bit like the Turn Ahead The Clock uniform but instead with the pirate from the 70s, the one who looks like Dean Partin.

    Aren’t there more than a handful of teams that didn’t use team colors? I don’t mind it

    It’s hard to make out the font on the cap, but it appears to not be the normal cap logo nor does it match the “P” on the jersey. Looks a little Pepperdine-ish to me.

    Any chance of a better pic?

    Jimmy Fallon, “thank you, frequent uniform unveilings, for continuously trying to visually ruin sports.”

    As a Pirates fan I’m overjoyed that they went with a gold (yellow) jersey! There’s already two black ones in the “4” set and I was afraid they’d add another one. It’s not clear yet whether there is any trim on the jersey sleeves but I’m hoping there is as it seems to be on the pants. I’d rather have black pants with this one than yellow, but they would really need some CC yellow socks. I don’t mind the PGH on the front – at least it’s not 412!

    I like this uni… mostly. It’s not the use of PGH that bothers me so much as the complete package of design choices that make up the “word”mark. It’s straight black on yellow, which is harsh to look at without a drop shadow or outline. It’s massive, yet the stroke of the letters is relatively thin, the combination of which makes the pirates “double-arched” font style a negative rather than a positive. The font looks like a mix of the pirates usual, a basic thin athletic font, and a digital clock font, and I don’t care for it much when it’s squished into the double arch. If there’s trim on the sleeves, it’s not enough to distract from the harsh starkness of the black in yellow.

    But aside from this total dislike of the wordmark, I like the jersey.

    If they were going for a throwback vibe should’ve gone with glorious red vest

    Really don’t understand this whole City Connect project.

    This is simply an alternate Pirates uniform.

    Sounds like you understand it just fine. That’s all these are meant to be is alternate unis. They give them a spiffy name for marketing purposes and then (in most cases) skew the design to fit that spiffy name, again, for marketing purposes.

    Conclusion: they are alternate uniforms.

    City Connect? Looks more like a bog-standard alt uniform. Such direct continuity with existing team uniforms and history makes me suspect that the Yankees CC uniform will be white pinstripes with a Tiffany-style NYC on the left chest.

    I’d have put “Pittsburgh” or “Pirates,” both things I associate with the city of Pittsburgh.

    Paul, I am curious how do you feel about rogue leaks like this? I understand when there are marketing leaks with inadvertent postings or retail shops putting displays up early, or when google purposefully creates their own leaks. But curious about what your thoughts are when an individual intentionally does something I say “underhanded” to create this opportunity.

    My feeling about leaks has always been that my life would be simpler without them. But once they happen, my job is to report on them.

    I’m not concerned with a source’s motives; I’m just concerned with confirming whether the information is legitimate and reporting on news that breaks on my beat.

    If teams have a problem with that, they can easily inoculate themselves simply by looping me in beforehand on an embargoed basis. If the Pirates had done that, I would not have reported on this leak from this source. But the Pirates didn’t do that, so I was at liberty to report on the news, which I did.

    Also, I’m not sure why you distinguish between this type of leak and a retail leak. When merch is displayed ahead of its official release, that is often “underhanded” as well. But again, I’m not concerned with the motive.

    I wrote a piece about the psychology of leaking back in 2015: link

    Three letter abbreviations are too small as “words,” and require a font that’s too big.

    PGH on the left chest may look better, but then the dangling swoosh on the right… I don’t know. Thankful it’s not a red vest.

    When can this “clean AF” trend end already? It’s clear that Nike’s gonna keep giving us crap like this until it’s over.

    I like the Pirates’ yellow over black, but the PHG text is “Phg-ing” silly looking imo.

    City Connects are what they are. We all knew the Nike-fication would happen. At least they’re doing it to special jerseys and not the regular sets. As a jersey alone it doesn’t look awful, simply because black over yellow is a cool look.

    “As a jersey alone it doesn’t look awful”

    Precisely. Most of these CC uniforms … no, check that … ALL of these CC uniforms are designed with the retail sale of the jersey or cap (and sometimes both) as the primary driver. Whether or not this is to the detriment of the uniform as a whole is of no concern. They are merch dumps, plain and simple.

    I’m still quite frankly amazed that 5 of the 6 CC uniforms this year were designed with black pants. Some of them actually pull it off, but again, the pants — as far as Nike/MLB’s bottom line are concerned — are of no concern.

    As a Pirates fan, I don’t love these, but I don’t think they are too bad, at least on the City Connect spectrum. Also, there’s definitely precedent for the gold tops with the black pants, so I think it’s a little different than it is in some other circumstances.

    I am not fond of that typography, it just feels to templated. Also, it will annoy me when they try to sell us some bullshit about how the typography “tells a story” about these “beloved” bridge patterns.

    That’s going to be nauseating.

    I will complement them, though, on at least getting the abbreviation right and making it PGH rather than PIT.

    That is the correct abbreviation that a lot of people mess up and it is a really weird phenomenon. It’s pretty unique to Pittsburgh in that people outside the city seem to universally abbreviate it PIT, whereas the people who actually live in a d around that city abbreviate it PGH.

    The CC uniform promotion, which might have been a madcap laboratory of whack and exciting uni design has revealed itself to be anything-but. There is a predictable, by-rote quality to it all…a certain sameness has crept in, thoroughly. Which has the odd effect of making CCs like Boston, San Diego, and SF–uniforms I actually dislike–seem the more successful for at least being a bit unexpected and jumping off the rails that everyone else is on. The Black-Pants/Historical-Echoes League that is taking shape is a stinging indictment of the limitation of Nike’s imagination…or the woefully conservative aesthetics of MLB ownership.
    CityConnect = So What?

    The CC uniform promotion…

    See, that’s the problem right there: It’s *not* a uniform promotion. It’s a merchandise program fronting as a uniform promotion. Unsurprisingly, that results (mostly) in bad uniforms.

    Haha…oh I’m with ya! Fact is, I used “Promotion” in my comment as a pejorative, for the very reason that it “promotes” sales of merchandise and nothing more…

    Awful. Should have put the Clemente Bridge on them with the term “Bucs” inside the bridge design.

    Yinzer here, I’ll need to see it on the field as Paul says but I like the idea of going back to the 70’s like Atlanta did. As far as a connection to the city, whatever. Steel City is over used sort of like the Big Apple or the Windy City so that’s refreshing. As well as the PIT airport code or to confuse it w Pitt. Would like to see what Three Rivers across the chest would have look liked in the block letters tho it’s a tad long. Maybe Buccos? The Burgh? Think any of those 3 I’d take over PGH.

    Well , my amateur team in which i was an inadequate right fielder wore yellow jerseys over black pants so I cannot be all negative about it because of fond memories, thousands of miles away from Pittsburgh. But having said that, this is a careless and uninspired design on many levels.

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