The Indians unveil a new uniform, and it is good

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The Cleveland Indians have unveiled a new road uniform, and I think it’s pretty spiffy.  A gray version of that sweet home alternate they’ve been wearing for the past couple of years.  The block lettering and the colors — that deep red and dark blue combo — looks classic without being consciously retro.  Just a humdinger of a uniform in my view.

Only complaints: they’re taking the navy block C cap they’ve been wearing with the home alternates and making it the road alternate cap and are introducing a red home alternate version.  While there’s a neat St. Louis Cardinals road navy vibe to it all, I think the red cap looks too much like some fashion color cap you’d see at Lids or something.  I’d keep the navy block C for both versions.

Oh, and I’d make both alternate versions the full-time uniform, because they’re approximately 100 times cooler than the regular uniforms they’re keeping.  Those things look so 90s now. Like pleated khaki pants and three-button suits.  Oh well. Maybe they’re just doing a slow transition to the alternates over time and the script-lettering unis will be gone next year.

By the way: a couple of years ago over at my old Shysterball site I ran down the best and worst uniforms each team has ever worn. It was probably the most popular post I ever did back in the day, and I think it’s time for a refresher.  It will take a bit of time to put it together, but I think I’ll drop that bad boy — probably on a division-by-division basis — sometime this week.

UPDATE:  Quick! Someone get Paul over at The DiaTribe a consulting fee for those new roadies!

MLB crowds jump from ’21, still below pre-pandemic levels

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PHOENIX — Even with the homer heroics of sluggers like Aaron Judge and Albert Pujols, Major League Baseball wasn’t able to coax fans to ballparks at pre-pandemic levels this season, though attendance did jump substantially from the COVID-19 affected campaign in 2021.

The 30 MLB teams drew nearly 64.6 million fans for the regular season that ended Wednesday, which is up from the 45.3 million who attended games in 2021, according to baseball-reference.com. This year’s numbers are still down from the 68.5 million who attended games in 2019, which was the last season that wasn’t affected by the pandemic.

The 111-win Los Angeles Dodgers led baseball with 3.86 million fans flocking to Dodger Stadium for an average of 47,672 per contest. The Oakland Athletics – who lost 102 games, play in an aging stadium and are the constant subject of relocation rumors – finished last, drawing just 787,902 fans for an average of less than 10,000 per game.

The St. Louis Cardinals finished second, drawing 3.32 million fans. They were followed by the Yankees (3.14 million), defending World Series champion Braves (3.13 million) and Padres (2.99 million).

The Toronto Blue Jays saw the biggest jump in attendance, rising from 805,901 fans to about 2.65 million. They were followed by the Cardinals, Yankees, Mariners, Dodgers, and Mets, which all drew more than a million fans more than in 2021.

The Rangers and Reds were the only teams to draw fewer fans than in 2021.

Only the Rangers started the 2021 season at full capacity and all 30 teams weren’t at 100% until July. No fans were allowed to attend regular season games in 2020.

MLB attendance had been declining slowly for years – even before the pandemic – after hitting its high mark of 79.4 million in 2007. This year’s 64.6 million fans is the fewest in a non-COVID-19 season since the sport expanded to 30 teams in 1998.

The lost attendance has been balanced in some ways by higher viewership on the sport’s MLB.TV streaming service. Viewers watched 11.5 billion minutes of content in 2022, which was a record high and up nearly 10% from 2021.