A glimpse of an alternate baseball jersey universe has been found in San Diego.
Thanks to Twitter user @justintyre, we’ve gotten our first-ever look at what Major League Baseball teams might have looked like had Under Armour taken over the on-field uniform contract for 2020, as had originally been the plan.
Announced to great fanfare at Baseball’s 2016 Winter Meetings in Maryland, the ten-year deal was slated to begin in 2020 and included on-field jerseys, as well as “base layer” gear (undershirts), game-day outerwear such as jackets and hoodies, and year-round training apparel (workout/locker room shirts, shorts). Of course this never happened, by 2018 the deal was off and Nike was more than happy to step in to take over.
Tyre, shopping at the San Diego Padres annual “garage sale”, found a white prototype Padres jersey in brown and gold with the team’s “SD” logo on the chest and again on the sleeve. Under Armour’s UA logo on the right side of the chest, similar to Nike’s “Swoosh” placement now.
Now, this design wasn’t necessarily what the Padres were planning on using, it’s more likely Under Armour was just giving them a preview of the new jersey cut so I’m not too interested in that (although… what’s with the sleeve patch?). Focusing on that jersey cut, in the photos Tyre shared you can see an almost mesh-like material at the shoulders, which would’ve been new for baseball:
I touched base with Tyre and asked for photos of the back of the jersey to see if there was any pattern in the fabric and he was happy to oblige. Check out this diamond-like pattern back there, this very well could’ve been rolled out to every team in the league:
The material looks extremely lightweight which may have been better for players on hot days (but as a fan purchasing a $400 authentic jersey? eh… not so much)
What’s interesting is that Under Armour seemed to be getting set to roll out their own jersey cut for the start of the deal in 2020, unlike Nike who simply re-badged Majestic uniforms for the first year (or possibly two) of their deal.
Special Thanks to Justin Tyre for sending us these photos!