There’s something you don’t know about me. I’m kinda obsessed with sports uniforms. The way you don’t talk politics with your dad at thanksgiving, that’s the way people tiptoe around me and the subject of Kelly Green v. Midnight, or the Flyers’ black period and don’t even get me started on monochrome in the NFL. Someday maybe you and I can sit down and I’ll show you my Powerpoint on Cooperalls. So when I heard that the Reading Phillies were rebranding, I got a little agita. Turns out, it could’ve been a lot worse.
As I previously noted, the R-Phils, whose 46-year affiliation with the Philadelphia Phillies is the longest in professional baseball, felt like they needed to
sell some more merch distinguish themselves from the big boys down the road, contracted with Brandiose Sports Marketing for a top to bottom rebrand: team name, logos, uniforms, the whole shebang. Well, on Saturday, they unveiled the new look.
The Team will now be the Reading Fightin Phils, and as GM Scott Hunsicker says,
“The Fightin Phils reaffirms our bond with the Phillies in a creative, unique way”
True dat, yo. In fact, the Fightins standard home set is a beautiful pinstripe on cream that is styled after the 1950 whiz kids.
Gone is the Pagoda, a nod to the 100-year-old structure that for reasons of incongruity overlooks Reading, replaced by an Ostrich.
The Crazy Hot Dog Vendor is one of the best minor league promotions I have seen, and now this guy gets his own spot on the Uni. That has got to be some kind of dream come true for somebody.
But from there, shit gets a little out of control: In addition to the Fightin’s home and road sets and a navy blue alt., there is an entirely different set of “Baseballtown” jerseys. a Black and Powder blue along with a Road Grey that all say “Baseballtown” across the front. All of those corresponding caps and logos pretty much exist because of one of the most depressing sentences in professional sports:
Our analysis showed us that Baseballtown resonated across all metrics.
Baseballtown is the name Reading gave itself, waaaay back in 2002, when All-Star games were meaningless and HGH coursed through the veins of the greatest players the game has ever known. So the uniforms come pre-steeped in like, 10 years of history. Having said that, I gotta give props to the faux flannel pattern on the polyester road grays. That is a nice touch.
All of that adds up to Seven different caps you can buy in the store.
There has been no mention of hosiery: The Phillies are a team who requires their minor league affiliated players to go high-cuffed, and with all this nostalgia in the air, it would be nice if stirrups and sanis were mandated rather than just high socks. That’s how they do it in Wilmington, and if it’s good enough for the KC Royals, it should be good enough for the
R-Phils… I mean the Reading Fightin Phils, or even the Baseballtown Baseballtownies. As long as they don’t fuck with my Churger, none of these are dealbreakers.
— Adam Brodsky
Adam Brodsky, is, in no particular order, a World Record Holding Folksinger, Writer, Baseball fan, and Beer League First Baseman who hits for average. His Novel will be out when he fucking finishes it, so get off his back! You can follow him @adambrodsky