[credit provider=”AP Images”]
Over the course of the last two seasons, there has been a disturbing growth in the number of players in Major League Baseball wearing undershirts with a prominent Nike Swoosh on the collar.The logo is so close to the jersey, that it may give some fans the false impression that Major League Baseball jerseys are made by Nike, when in fact they are made by Majestic.
Majestic has been the sole provider of big league uniforms since 2005. And despite the logo encroachment, they don’t sound worried. “Based on our consumer insights, most core fans know that Majestic is the official uniform of MLB,” said Michael Johnson, VP of Marketing for Majestic.
Major League Baseball has strict rules that keep non-manufacturer’s corporate logos off the uniforms (although those rules apparently don’t apply when the teams are playing in Japan). The only logo seen on big league jerseys is the small Majestic logo on the left sleeve. Of course, with most images taken from the front, the only logo seen by the fans is often the swoosh.
Undershirts are not considered part of the “uniform,” and manufacturers are often prominently featured on equipment. So we see swooshes in many other aspects of big league baseball, including gloves, and catcher’s equipment.
On the other hand, socks and stirrups worn by the players are apparently part of the uniform, as we never see the logos on those, even though they are featured prominently on socks in the college ranks.
The entire situation reeks of hypocrisy. Either the uniforms are sacred or they are not. Meanwhile, Majestic, a small company that has been providing great products to MLB for many years, is getting bamboozled by Nike’s almighty Swoosh (and their deep pockets).