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Yanks Owner Says Team Has No Plans for a City Connect Uniform

As various MLB uniform rules and initiatives have come along in recent years, people always ask whether the Yankees will somehow be exempt from the rule or opt out of the program, even though that’s never the case. “The Yankees won’t wear those silly Players Weekend jerseys with the nicknames on the back, will they?” Yes, actually, they will. “The Yankees won’t wear the Nike logo on their sacred pinstripes, will they?” Yes, actually, they will. “The Yankees won’t sell ad space on their uniform, will they?” Yes, actually, they will.

So when the City Connect program launched in 2021, there was the usual chorus of people saying, “The Yankees won’t take part in this, will they?” And all along I’ve said, “Yes, actually, they will,” because MLB had explicitly stated that all 30 teams would be part of the CC program. The Yankees are among the 10 teams that have not yet received a CC uniform (the other nine are the A’s, Blue Jays, Cardinals, Guardians, Mets, Phillies, Rays, Tigers, and Twins), and the plan, at least to my understanding, has been that all 10 of those teams will get on board the CC train in 2024.

Or will they? Team owner Hal Steinbrenner, making a radio appearance on Wednesday’s edition of The Michael Kay Show, was asked if the team would have a CC uniform and had this response (the exchange comes at the 23:46 mark here [and is worth listening to if only to hear how much Hal sounds like Larry David impersonating Hal’s father on Seinfeld]):

I’m not having any serious conversations about doing it. I think I understand the reason [behind the CC program] — and again, I think it appeals to a lot of fans, especially younger fans, and you know, merchandise and all that. But we have not had any serious conversations about doing it. It doesn’t mean I won’t [do it] someday, but I don’t even know how that would look, quite frankly. I don’t even know what the look would be.

So there you have it: The Yankees do not have a CC design currently in the works, which means they will not have such a uniform for the foreseeable future. Good for them! The only question now is why they didn’t opt out of Players Weekend.

(My thanks to longtime reader Joel Keller for his assistance in locating the exact audio passage.)

Comments (44)

    Nice to the Yankees holding the line again, they have been slipping since the Boss died.

    If they do wind up doing it, I though they go navy with white pinstripes. I recall that being a consideration for a road uniform at one point. That being said, I hope they don’t do it at all.

    What would be really funny, is if Adidas or Under Armor could buy ad space on the sleeves of a Nike jersey LOL

    Yeah, that’s not going to happen. Pretty sure there would be non-compete, exclusivity clauses in Nike’s contract to prevent that possibility.

    In fact, teams are not allowed to sell uni-ad space to any company that directly competes with *any* MLB-wide partner, not just Nike.

    I don’t read that comment to mean they aren’t going to do it, just that they haven’t had the meetings with Nike to come up with the design yet. Steinbrenner’s not in any rush to do it, but if MLB puts their foot down and tells the Yankees it’s time and they have to join the program, it sounds to me like he’ll cave and go along with it.

    I agree. Sounds to me like this is a move for Hal to save face; He chose his words carefully.

    People: The design/production process takes several years. Many teams are already working on their *next* CC design. So if the Yanks haven’t had any significant talks about the design yet, that means it’s not happening next year or for the foreseeable future — which is exactly what I wrote.

    I don’t doubt the design process takes that long. But I do find it funny that it does considering how bad, unoriginal, or lazy so many of the CC and NBA equivalents are from Nike. Or even full on redesigns that they do for any league. Given all the design contests uni watch runs that always churn out better uniforms than what actually get produced, it is crazy to think it takes them so long to create such underwhelming, or often bad designs.
    From my own personal experience I am part of the GUD simulation league, it took me a couple of days to generate a uniform that is better than most of what Nike is putting out lately for football. Probably because decent uniforms aren’t concerned with overdesigned elements based on silly storytelling that you can’t even noticed during games.

    It took Nike several years to come up with that Dodgers CC uniform? I’m not sure I’d boast about that if I was them.

    I made my comment understanding everything you’ve said. I’ve just heard enough corpo-speech similar to Hal’s here that I won’t presume they have not been in the works already.

    Is it possible the City Connect uniforms are in the works and Hal Steinbrenner simply doesn’t know it? I’m not from New York, so I’m not aware of how involved he is as an owner when it comes to things like alternate uniforms.

    The ultimate power move would be to unveil their CC uniform, and it’s just their regular uniform. Then they could do some sarcastic storytelling BS. “The pinstripes represent the iconic pinstripes from the Yankees traditional home uniform.”

    I can’t see the A’s doing the city connect jerseys until after they move to Vegas. If they get city connect jerseys it’s going to be silly.

    Show me a serious CC jersey. Not a good looking one, but one that seriously addresses a visual need that has been lacking from an MLB team. Miami is the closest one that I can think of, only because they have been a visual trainweck since the rebranding, so any minimal success was bound to be positive.

    It’s not easy to top the Marlins here, but I’ll go with the Mariners CC – they haven’t looked right (or all that good) for decades.
    The compass and navy/green was then and is now not to my liking…the trident and blue/yellow is much more pleasing and fun.
    Now, about those pants…

    *unless/until they move. Deal isn’t done and with how much of a groundswell as there is for them to stay, I wouldn’t bet on LV being a sure thing. I do agree though, leave the A’s out of CC for now.

    I always thought there would only be 29 City Connect jerseys, since I doubted the traditionalist Yankees would go for something like that.

    I wish the whole MLB City Connect program would go back to the hell that spawned it. All of them have been abominations and the only nice thing I can say is the Marlins hat and colors were ok.

    IF the Yankees do it, I bet they just do a throwback look to the 1910s or something and call that their city connect. I don’t believe they are required to be clown suits. Most teams just let Nike talk them into one.

    Good for them. They have two great looks. If I buy a ticket to see The Yankees that’s what I’m hoping to see.

    And I’ll add that for 30 years I thought The Yankees colors were black and white.
    Maybe my eyes don’t recognize navy. Apparently there are several other teams as well.
    And it never made sense to me that a black and white team had an iconic logo that was red and blue. WTF.

    It would be really funny if the Yankees CC uniform turns out to be their mothballed reverse pinstripe design from the early 1970s.

    I really hope they end up doing something clever like making it identical to their home jersey, but with the pinstripes being a list of all their World Series titles.

    Different enough up close to make the MLB merch higher ups happy, but visually the same on the field. Alas I can dream.

    Hate the Yanks but give them credit for not buying into this ugly uniforms for sale foolishness.

    Being a lifelong Tigers fan, I really hope that they follow the Yankees’ lead and refuse to have a CC uniform as well, but I’m not holding my breath on that.

    Their owner may not be willing to draw that line in the sand at the current time.

    Detroit has refused to have an alternate uniform up to this point, so there is hope.

    I haven’t lived in Detroit since 1993, so I’m kind of out of the loop on this one.

    I can’t imagine the Yankees not doing this. Do they get a free pass for being the Evil Empire? To be honest, part of me wants them to give the whole CC program the middle finger. But then again they can’t be the lone holdout. Everyone has to participate in this silly merch dump.

    If true and they don’t do one, how many other teams are asking themselves “wait…we couldn’t have said no?”

    As various MLB uniform rules and initiatives have come along in recent years, people always ask whether the Yankees will somehow be exempt from the rule or opt out of the program, even though that’s never the case.

    We remember the Turn Ahead the Clock unis, and the Majestic logos. In both cases, the Yankees opted out.

    (If they’re looking for a way to retain their classic look, maybe they can take a page from the Orioles and put a design on the inside of the jersey.)

    Thank God. My favorite team refuses to partake in that CC garbage. Yankees prove again they are operating on a different level.

    The level where they have one World Series in the last two decades and underachieve every October? That level?

    Dial back the snark, buddy. This is a uniform site, so I was referring to the Yankees on-field look. No gimmicks. No softball tops No alt caps. No Sunday jerseys. No CC. No ad patch.

    I wouldn’t mind a City Connect that was very subtle — like the red and blue pinstripes that were propogated by Mitchell & Ness years ago, albeit never actually worn by the Yanks.

    “The only question now is why they didn’t opt out of Players Weekend.”

    If I remember correctly, the Players Weekend was a joint thing with the MLBPA. It would be unlikely that the Yankees would be presented with this agreement and be able to say “yeah, we’re not going to do that.”

    Has uni-watch ever covered anything about Yankees blue/black confusion? After posting here I posted a poll on Facebook – a photo of a Yankee player – is this blue or black? A decent amount of responses, and the breakdown was split pretty evenly. Half said definitely black and half said they easily see blue. My wife said she clearly sees blue and always has while I don’t see an iota of that color. She said men are more likely to see black while women would be more open to color all due to evolution of eye cones etc. Should be noted I always thought The Tigers, Red Sox Twins of the 70’s/80’s also wore black.

    Really odd release schedule for these uniforms. Why not just rollout 10 a season over three seasons?

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