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The New MLB Jerseys are Not Being Welcomed with Open Arms

With Spring Training in full swing, all eyes are on the players reporting to their team complexes. Once pitchers and catchers reported, fans quickly noticed the differences in the on-field uniforms for the 2024 season.   

  

While Nike has been manufacturing MLB jerseys since the start of 2020, this marked the first year with the new Vapor Premier jerseys manufactured by Fanatics. The league is promoting the jersey as a better-fitting alternative uniform designed with the players in mind. 


Photo Credits: @Yankees on Instagram

 

Fan Reactions 

On Twitter, many quickly noticed that the name on the back of the jersey is arranged differently than it has been for many years. While the traditional jersey had the last name straight across the back of the jersey, the newly produced jerseys have the name in a circular shape above the number. For longer last names, the name surrounds most of the number. Astros pitcher Justin Verlander, for example, is one player spotted with this jersey issue. Shorter last names are also victims of this, with superstar Shohei Ohtani’s jersey getting the circular treatment as well.   

  

Fans have also noticed how the fabric of the pants is noticeably different. In a Twitter video posted by the Seattle Mariners, fans were in the comments tweeting about Cal Raleigh’s pants and how you can almost see through them. In the video, it was noticeable that you could see the tucked-in jersey through the pants, which had never been the case before the jersey switch.   

  

Fans are also outraged that these jerseys appear cheaper but are more expensive than last year. Last season, replica jerseys were typically sold for $135, and authentic jerseys were sold for $300. This season, replica jerseys are sold for $175, and authentic jerseys range from $325 to $370. Many fans are calling out this issue, wondering why the cost is higher when the quality is much lower than the season before. 


Photo Credits: @Thebobbymullins on X


Player Reactions 

Around camp, the new jerseys have been the prevalent topic of discussion. While some players are neutral on the subject, many are very open about the issues they have faced since the jerseys were introduced. The biggest flaw many players have complained about is the texture of the jersey, describing it as feeling cheap and a t-shirt material. Cardinals pitcher Miles Mikolas even questioned the design of the pants, discussing with reporters how they no longer make the pants specially for each player. Trea Turner has also been vocal about his feelings on the jerseys, telling reporters how “everyone hates them.”   

  

MLBPA executive Tony Clark held a press conference recently urging Nike and Fanatics to revisit the jerseys before Spring Training ends, considering the pushback from players. He considers that getting used to a change like this usually takes time but notes how many issues these jerseys have caused.


Photo Credits: Ashley Landis / Associated Press


Commissioner Rob Manfred has come to the defense of these jerseys, telling the media that the jerseys are designed with the players in mind and believes that they will be popular during the season. With Spring Training now in full swing, only time will tell if these jerseys are still on the backs of MLB's best players, or if they will be replaced by a new version.   

 

Edited By: Sarah Muñoz 

Social Media Content Created By: Jenna Rose Weisenbach 


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