The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

MLB’s New Uniforms: Curve Ball or Changeup?

AP Photo / Charlie Neibergall

In an attempt to keep the players cool during the 2024 season and improve their performance, Major League Baseball (MLB) created new uniforms designed by Nike and manufactured by Fanatics. These new jerseys have received mixed reviews, not only from the players but the fans, as well.

Introduced with the arrival of spring training, the new Nike Vapor Jerseys provide players with “25 percent more stretch and dry 28 percent faster than their predecessors.”

MLB has been working since 2018 with Nike and Fanatics to bring wholesale changes to the jerseys, which previously had been manufactured by Majestic since 2005. Nike would undertake the process of designing the new uniforms, while Fanatics, which acquired Majestic in 2017, would manufacture the jerseys using the same factories that Majestic had previously used to produce the jerseys.

The league, in collaboration with Nike, took a technologically forward approach to fitting the players, as more than 300 players underwent the process of receiving body scans during the months toward the end of the 2018 season. After initial designs were created, all players were fitted and measured by the Fanatics team in 2023 to ensure a proper database for their implementation during the 2024 season.

Some players have given positive feedback on the jerseys: as outfielder Corbin Carroll — who plays for the Arizona Diamondbacks — said per ESPN, “I definitely feel faster in it.”

According to MLB News, Kenley Jansen, a pitcher for the Boston Red Sox, had similar remarks about the uniform’s on-field effect. “It feels more fit on your body, and how light it is,” Jansen said.

Los Angeles outfielder Jason Heyward highly touted the new uniforms, according to the Dodger Blue. “Somehow this feels even more authentic than the ones that we’ve been wearing, to be honest. The material feels that much nicer. It feels like it’s going to breathe better. And I think a really cool part for the fans is the number on the back having that different texture,” Heyward said.

Though players enjoy the feeling of the new uniforms, problems have surfaced during spring camps with its appearance. Due to the lighter fabrics being used, there are complaints arising over the “amateurish” look of the jersey, due to the smaller numbers and letters being used.

The pants also pose their own set of problems. Some players have complained about how the eggshell color of the pants makes them see-through.

“A lot of the rhetoric is confirmation that the pants are see-through,” MLBPA executive director Tony Clark said, per ESPN. “It’s been an ongoing conversation where each day has yielded something new that doesn’t seem to make as much sense as you would like it.” 

Founder and CEO of Fanatics Michael Rubin believes his company is being unfairly criticized for the uniform problems. According to USA Today, Rubin spoke out about the controversy.

“Nike designs everything. Hands us a spec and says, ‘Make this,’” Rubin said. “We have made everything exactly to the spec. And Nike and baseball would say, ‘Yes, you’ve done everything we’ve asked you do to.’”

According to ESPN, an MLB spokesperson has come out and said that adjustments are being made to the uniforms, especially the pants, with regards to their fit and color. This came after MLB, Nike and Fanatics representatives received complaints from players during their visits to training camps.

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