My Guide To Buying and Wearing Jerseys

I love authentic jerseys.

 

They weren’t readily available to purchase when I was a kid, and my folks wouldn’t have allowed me to shell out the big bucks anyway.

 

The only jerseys you could buy back then were the cheap replicas and so I did.


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In the baseball season, I had a Lee Mazzilli New York Mets home jersey.

 


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My choice in hoops was a Larry Bird Boston Celtics road uniform.

 


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For football, I was the only kid in my school that had an O.J. Simpson San Francisco 49ers jersey (it was a form of protest by this broken-hearted Bills fan after they traded away my childhood hero).

 

When we travel around the International League with the PawSox, we see dozens of Red Sox jerseys in the stands every night wherever we go.  For the most part, I think it’s great, but I have come up with a few basic rules for proper jersey-wearing etiquette.

 

There are essentially three types of acceptable jerseys for a fan to wear:

 

1.  Any Current Player.  That’s right, from the superstar to the utility man, if he’s on the current roster it’s OK by me.  For example, if Boof Bonser makes the Red Sox and you can actually find his jersey, feel free to shell out your $175.  But if the player you have chosen is traded or released, the jersey has to go unless he’s a . . .  

 

2.  Team Legend.  Ideally, the style of the jersey should match the look of the player’s era.  This category is open to some interpretation.  For example, in my book Nomar Garciaparra doesn’t qualify as a Red Sox legend, but you might disagree.  However, if you bought a Coco Crisp jersey and are too cheap to get rid of it, you can’t try to claim that he’s a Sox legend.  One additional note about the “legend” category – if the player does something really bad, the jersey is no longer wearable (see my O.J. Simpson jersey).

 

3.  Wild-Card Category.  This can be an up-and-coming prospect, a memorable character in team history, a guy with a bizarre last name, a player that was just obtained in a trade or through free agency, or a former Pawtucket player that I really like (these are my rules after all).

 

Since spring training is just around the corner, perhaps you’re considering purchasing a new jersey to wear in 2010.  Here are some Dan Hoard-approved choices from all 30 MLB teams.

 

TEAM                CURRENT             LEGEND                WILD-CARD   

Baltimore             Matt Wieters          Cal Ripken           Rick Dempsey

Boston                  David Ortiz             Ted Williams         Kevin Youkilis

While Sox            Mark Buehrle          Carlton Fisk          Gordon Beckham

Cleveland            Grady Sizemore      Bob Feller              Justin Masterson

Detroit                  Justin Verlander     Ty Cobb                 Mark Fidrych

Kansas City         Zack Greinke          George Brett          Dan Quisenberry

LA Angels           Torii Hunter            Nolan Ryan           Brandon Wood

Minnesota           Joe Mauer                Kirby Puckett        Justin Morneau

NY Yankees        Derek Jeter              Lou Gehrig            Mariano Rivera

Oakland            Andrew Bailey         Reggie Jackson      Craig Breslow            

Seattle                Ichiro Suzuki          Ken Griffey Jr.       Jay Buhner

Tampa Bay          Evan Longoria        Carl Crawford        Carlos Pena

Texas                 Josh Hamilton         Nolan Ryan            David Murphy

Toronto               Adam Lind               Roberto Alomar      Marc Rzepczynski

Arizona               Brandon Webb        Randy Johnson       Mark Grace

Atlanta              Chipper Jones         Henry Aaron           Tommy Hanson

Cubs                     Derrek Lee              Ernie Banks            Kosuke Fukudome

Cincinnati            Joey Votto               Pete Rose                Jose Rijo

Colorado              Todd Helton            Larry Walker          Troy Tulowitzki

Florida                 Hanley Ramirez      Dontrelle Willis      Dan Uggla

Houston                 Lance Berkman      Jeff Bagwell            Chris Johnson

LA Dodgers         Manny Ramirez      Sandy Koufax         Clayton Kershaw

Milwaukee          Prince Fielder         Robin Yount           Alcides Escobar

NY Mets              David Wright          Tom Seaver             Ed Kranepool

Philadelphia        Chase Utley             Mike Schmidt         Roy Halladay

Pittsburgh            A.McCutcheon       Roberto Clemente   Brandon Moss

San Diego            Adrian Gonzalez     Tony Gwynn           Trevor Hoffman

San Francisco     Tim Lincecum         Willie Mays            Pablo Sandoval

St. Louis               Albert Pujols           Stan Musial             Matt Holliday

Washington         Adam Dunn             Gary Carter             Stephen Strasburg

 

By the way, not everyone agrees that wearing jerseys is cool.  I caught a female comedian named Whitney Cummings on the Tonight Show last week who questioned why so many guys wear jerseys while watching their favorite teams play on TV.  As she pointed out, she doesn’t put on scrubs to watch Grey’s Anatomy.

16 Comments

Lol i love the list ;)

I want a jersey but i’m always afraid that if I get one then the player is gonna leave or get traded. That sucks :P Of course you can save it and wear it as a throwback 20 yrs later but ya know. I only wish they weren’t so expensive…. ehh i guess that is a pro and con of having a jersey. I’ll stick with my t-shirt/mesh jerseys for now lol. I’ll have you know all the t-shirts i bought, the players on the back ended up leaving after that year. I hate to say I’m a jinx but i’ll try not to buy jerseys with good players’ names on the back just for good measure ;)

http://mimi.mlblogs.com

If you going to spring for an expensive one, the “team legend” category is your safest bet.

How about in the wild card a player from your favorite college you follow

That’s a great suggestion. I approve!
Thanks for commenting.

Dan, I’m not sure about you, but I have issues with jerseys not being the correct style as their professional counterparts (i.e., if you have a home Sox or Yankees jersey, it should NOT have the name on the back). This drives me up the wall.

And I like the college player suggestion!

I personally agree with you on the “correct style” argument, but the authentic jerseys are so expensive that I will cut fans a little slack if they want the name on the home jersey.

How’s this for a loophole? I got a #20 Cincinnati Bengals Tory James jersey in ’05. This way I have a Bengals jersey with my name on the back, but it’s not a personalized jersey. Acceptable?

~James

James:

Good try, but I can’t give it my stamp of approval. You could change a few letters and go with the Bengals current #20 David Jones.

i still wear my bill mueller jersey when im at the park, he was a fan favorite for a few years here and won a batting title so in my head thats good for a pass. plus i get a lot of compliments at mccoy on it, people still really like him and remember the 04 team. go sox!

i still wear my bill mueller jersey when im at the park, he was a fan favorite for a few years here and won a batting title so in my head thats good for a pass. plus i get a lot of compliments at mccoy on it, people still really like him and remember the 04 team. go sox!

Great list and fun to read, but….only a NY guy would put down Fisk as a White Sox legend, in Red Sox territory. This may bring back nightmares of seeing Fisk in those ugly, “oldtime” uniforms that Chicago wore. Yes, I know the stats and years may favor Chicago, but I do my best to erase them from my memory. I mean we’re talking about Carlton Fisk, the guy I saw play AA ball at McCoy. Carlton Fisk, the greatest “Anti-Yankee” of all time, the guy they named the foul pole after. Carlton Fisk the Sox legend…the real Sox.

Hyder, can you explain this to Dan?

Don

As an Indians fan, most of the player’s jerseys i bought are in another jersey.
http://clevelandbaseball.mlblogs.com/

Dan,
What about my homemade Ron Johnson Paw Sox jersey that I wore to the series in Louisville last May? Do you have any rules concerning specialty team wear? Is it still OK to wear it now even though RJ has made the BIG TIME?

Hi Dan,

I’ve been a Red Sox fan for over 50 years. I feel like most people in this area who have allegiance to their sports teams it’s Ok to support and wear jerseys for their favorite teams. I was never one of them until recently. I also thought of it as too much of a “player crush” and more of a adolescent gesture to worship players by wearing jerseys with palyers names on them. Especially now in the era of free agency, player movement between teams, a jersey certainly gets outdated. I found a happy medium that works for me. I did breakdown and buy two replica jerseys when the Red Sox won World Championships in 2004 and 2007. But instead of placing someone’s name on them both of my jerseys read “World Champs 04″ and “World Champs 07″. They are two events I will always remember and I feel its the best way to support the team and show my appreciation and allengience. I only wear them when I go to Boston and Pawtcuket. I haven’t seen anyone else with wording like this, so I guess that also makes me unique.

Good Blog !! Jay

I totally agree with Whitney Cummins there! And I guess most of the female population will be there with us. What is with guys and all these team jerseys anyway? No dudes, it is not cool. It makes you look like such wannabes! Get my drift? So we can conclude that there are essentially no types of acceptable jerseys for a fan to wear. Just like we never wear scrubs to watch the latest season of scrubs! Mephisto

I appreciate you sharing this blog article.Thanks Again. Really Cool.

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