The MLB is allowing its players some significant freedom in uniform choices later this season. Players will have the option to add a nickname on the back of their jerseys, wear shoes of their choice, and include a personalized patch for someone they feel was important in their development, according to a memo obtained by Jeff Passan at Yahoo Sports
Players Weekend, August 25-27, was negotiated between the league office and the MLB Player’s Association. Other items that have “minimal color restrictions” include gloves, wristbands, batting gloves, compression sleeves, and catcher’s mask. White gloves, sleeves, and wristbands are prohibited.
The proceeds from any jersey sales will be donated to the Youth Development Foundation. According to the YDF, the stated goal of the foundation “will focus on improving the caliber, effectiveness and availability of amateur baseball and softball programs across the United States and Canada”.
Players Weekend might mark the beginning of a period of general relaxation in how the league views players inserting their own brand or personality. Baseball may now be looking to follow in the footsteps of the NBA with more twists on alternate logos, uniforms, and equipment. It could also be a possibility to see more individual players wearing their own sponsored material in the future.
Regardless, I’m excited to see some of these jerseys. In case some of the Marlins players are currently reading this article and are struggling to come up with nickname ideas, I’ve attached a handy list made up of some well-established ones and others of my own creation:
-The Player Formerly Known As Michael