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The new batting practice/spring training caps have been unveiled and they are mostly OK

Dec 27, 2012, 10:40 AM EDT

Astros cap

Uniwatch’s Paul Lukas has an exclusive look at the new batting practice/spring training caps for 2013. The good: they have gotten rid of the little stretch panels and superfluous striping and look more like regular caps now.  The bad: some of the designs are lame.

Oh, and there’s ugly. For reasons that completely escape me given how the team has slowly eliminated native American iconography from their uniforms (i.e. getting rid of the tomahawk on the alternate jerseys, etc.), the Braves have unveiled a hideous BP cap with that old “screaming Indian” logo. Most of us had thought that they had canned that thing, but apparently not. Poor, poor form, Atlanta.

That aside, the missteps are merely ones of color schemes. And some of the new ones look downright cool.

  1. natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 10:49 AM

    If Chief Wahoo and Nocahoma are real Native Americans, and their history is being celebrated, I could almost understand. ALMOST. If they are real names, I’d like to hear it, but I’ve searched the internetz and haven’t found any stories that reflect actual events. The images are cartoonish and SICK. The DC football team’s image is fine, but the NAME is the worst, the absolute worst. Sadly, the Potatoes are good this year, and I want so much to be excited.

    • paul621 - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:08 PM

      Just in case you were being serious, I’ll point out that “Nocahoma” is a little too close to “knock a homer” for me to believe it’s an homage to a real person.

      • townballblog - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:21 PM

        hahaha…Noc-a-homa….haha, I didn’t notice it until you pointed it out.

      • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:47 PM

        I was, so THANKS!! Even more absurd!

    • townballblog - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:19 PM

      I learned my lesson earlier this year about not getting political in here…well, too political anyway (thanks, Franciscofc…I mean that:)

      That said, and I’ve argued this before, it is not like they’re taking a Native American symbol and bashing it. They’re actually taking the symbol and making it the face of their franchise, something they are proud of, and to a certain extent, something some people will worship.

      I’ll be happy to change my opinion on the matter and say it is indeed offensive if someone gives me a good reason, I haven’t heard one yet. Until then, I think this is totally okay.

      • jwbiii - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:00 PM

        The Braves’ Indianhead symbol is very political. It is a direct descendant of the Civil War Copperhead movement. Their symbol was a clipped Indian Head penny, often worn as a lapel pin. Later, the New York Tammany Hall political machine adopted that symbol. James Gaffney, a Tammany Hall New York alderman, purchased the Boston NL team, then known as the Rustlers, in 1912. He changed the name to the Braves and added the Indian symbols.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 4:59 PM

        TBB- thank you for saying what I clearly could not say with a level head. I let emotions get the best of me sometimes, especially with these type of PC issues that only see outcry a few times a year when it’s pertinent (yet most people who cry fowl on here have not joined any petitions to get them to put the kabosh on these names). I have yet to see a logical explanation as to HOW they are meant to be hateful, offensive, spiteful, ignorant, etc. They are the face of a franchise. There are proud fans wearing the logo. And I support keeping them in place.

      • townballblog - Dec 27, 2012 at 8:21 PM

        JW – I understand what you’re saying but I meant not getting too political as in using the HBT platform to get into politics (though sometimes we do as often it can be unavoidable).

        Nevertheless, I didn’t know that about the history of the logo, kind of a cool thing to know.

        Rockthered – Yep, anytime.

    • louhudson23 - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:44 PM

      Surely you fellows were being sarcastic in not knowing it was Knock a Homer…they have certainly never made a secret of it and I have been watching the chief for well over 40 years now and we knew it as little kids and looked for him at the ballpark…

      • townballblog - Jan 3, 2013 at 11:13 PM

        Nope, not being sarcastic. I grew up a braves fan, still love them, but when I was little I didn’t speak English so the connection never clicked.

    • blackandbluedivision - Dec 28, 2012 at 1:22 AM

      The idea is it’s a character. They’re taking a made up icon or picture. Calling it Native American and honoring that. They’re not honoring Native Americans they’re honoring a stereotype and a joke. Especially when these logos were created in 1912 a era when racism ran rampant. It sickens me that no one would step up and fix something like this.

      If you go to another country and they have a soccer (whatever sport) and have a team called the Americans and use a picture of a drunk “RedNeck” as their logo. How would you feel? You might laugh, but I guarantee somebody in this country would be offended. Which is the case here. If you’re not offended, fine, but don’t ignore someone that is.

      • townballblog - Jan 3, 2013 at 11:10 PM

        I’m not ignoring anyone who is offended, I merely disagree with it being offensive. As a matter of fact I said that I would happily change my view on the subject if someone presented a good explanation as to why it is offensive.

        And as far as I can tell none of the Native American personas are being portrayed as being drunk… Your drunk redneck reference is a lame argument.

      • townballblog - Jan 3, 2013 at 11:14 PM

        PS – And yes, I might giggle a bit at a Drunk Redneck logo :-)

      • blackandbluedivision - Jan 4, 2013 at 11:39 AM

        “I’m not ignoring who is offended.”

        “As a matter of fact I said that I would happily change my view on the subject if someone presented a good explanation as to why it is offensive.”

        Well look around you. People are telling you why it is offensive. You’re ignoring what they are telling you just because you aren’t offended. It doesn’t matter if you’re offended. If I say something to piss you off and I go and tell you that it doesn’t matter because I’m not offended, does that make you feel better? Now consider how you feel versus a population of people.

        Native Americans make up 0.9% of this country. Just because there isn’t a uproar doesn’t mean that a good amount of Native Americans aren’t offended.

  2. chill1184 - Dec 27, 2012 at 10:52 AM

    I like last year’s style better but the Tiger’s one for this upcoming season is pretty sweet.

  3. realgone2 - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    I’m sick of everyone being so easily offended. Thumbs down away, you jerk offs.

    • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:19 AM

      Gee, I bet this was a post by a white male. Anyone offended by that assumption?

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:53 AM

        He’s offended that so many people are easily offended, and is quick to be offended by others showing their offense to his comments.

        I think I got that right…

      • heyblueyoustink - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:14 PM

        I cringe when anyone automatically generalizes that ” it must be a white dude” in any kind of instance. It comes off as kind of bigoted in it’s own right, if you really think about it.

      • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:48 PM

        heyblue==> That is EXACTLY my point. Thanks for helping!

      • paperlions - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:45 PM

        The funny thing about the automatic assumption of “it must be a white dude” (and I am a white dude), is that the assumption is pretty much always right. As the only group that doesn’t really know what it feels like in the US to be discriminated against, it pretty much takes a white guy to be so able to not understand why someone would take offense to a characterization of a race/sex.

    • Sign Ahead - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:24 AM

      Is a tacky cartoon character really that important to you?

      • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:33 AM

        Um, yes. This is a GAME, remember, it’s not decisions about the Middle East or the “fiscal cliff”. So, yeah.

      • Sign Ahead - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:45 AM

        I think I’m having a Poe moment.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:35 PM

        natslady- we’ve been down this road before…

        so if it’s a GAME and you don’t LIKE it? Don’t watch it. You’re not being forced. It’s a decision by management and MLB. Do you think we need our federal government to mediate this as well? Absoultely ASSANINE that people are so focused on things like this when there are so many other issues going on in everyday life that actual have an effect on people. Not “how does this team’s cartoon image make you feel?” As a matter of fact lets take it a step further. I’m offended that Stewie on Family Guy has a mishapen head. It’s offense to children with hydrocephalus. Seth McFarlane should be forced to make his head normal. And I’m offended by everything that comes out of Spike Lee’s mouth- as a public figure, he should be forced to shut up about anything race related. And I’m offended by Heather Graham’s performance in The Hangover- how inappropriate is it that they make a sweeping generalization about strippers having baby’s and trying to get rich quick off doctors who are clearly loopy on GHB? That’s incredibly offensive to strippers…

        See what I did there? EVERYTHING offends somebody. If you want to whine and pout about it? Good riddance. But to EXPECT changes just because it offends somebody, and to criticize a business for making a business decision? Yea… unless you’re willing to cover the cost of changing every last lick of merch being sold, the potential PR backlash, and whatever other expenses may come about? Good luck with that. The only symbol they care about is the almighty ‘$’ and Cleveland, Hotlanta and the Skins are surely not losing any business these days because of their mascots.

      • Sign Ahead - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:39 PM

        So many false equivalences…so few convincing arguments.

      • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:52 PM

        rockthered, so it’s okay to offend people if it’s a game? Um, no. Ever been in middle school. Names can really hurt. My point is, yes, it’s not the fiscal cliff, but YES, it is a GAME so why offend people? I grasp that people are attached to the logo and have maybe spend thousands of dollars on gear, but that is no excuse. If your grandmother had not been able to vote when she was 21 maybe you would understand.

      • Sign Ahead - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:12 PM

        This is where my comment about tacky cartoon characters comes from. Right now, it seems like Chief Wahoo and whatshisname from Atlanta are better protected than actual living, breathing human beings.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:26 PM

        natslady…missing your point altogether here. What exactly is the correlation between female voters decades ago and an animated logo of a baseball team that’s been around just as long? Apples and oranges. It’s absurd to compare the two other than from a PC standpoint. People are way too focused on protecting feelings. It’s absurd. And you’re so focused ont he logo offending people with statements like “so why offend people” but that is absolutely not the reasoning for the logos. Never was from the start. And if you truly think it is… that’s quite the skewed view on things.

        I get your point- somewhere, someone is offended and it needs changed before a tear is shed and America falls apart… But did it ever occur to you that there are MORE people that would rather keep the team names the same? Actually, I’d love to see a poll. Show me how many people feel it’s offensive and need the name changed. I still think it’s not nearly as high as you would think. It’s on the same grounds as the Occupy junkies- they think they’re some monstrous group who will have an effect but really more people are just walking by and shaking their heads and telling the hippies to take a bath. It’s a commendable effort, but in the end, it’s wasted time. I think I’m partial to keeping the teams in tact solely because I’m tired of the PC BS that engulfs everyday life. It’s always “that’s not fair” or “what about me” or “that’s offensive to somebody don’t say/do that.” And really it’s gotten to a point where NOTHING is acceptable anymore. And personally, I find THAT offensive.

      • paperlions - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:52 PM

        Images that belittle people based on offensive stereotypes should not be used:

        Is this one okay to use?

        Are this okay?

        There is no defense of images like Wahoo or names like Redskins (I don’t have much problem with their icon).

      • cur68 - Dec 27, 2012 at 8:34 PM

        The second of your links was really compelling ‘lions. I think people have grown so used to seeing the Indian’s logo that they are missing how derogatory it is. Its not until you place it in the context of other’s of its ilk that you can really see what you are looking at. Its a good exercise to engage in for this sort of thing and you can apply to many other sports teams.

        Now I must go. The Washington Blackskins are playing and I don’t want to miss anything.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:21 PM

      It’s not about being offended. It’s about being respectful and, ultimately, growing up.

  4. hojo20 - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    The Braves should just change their name to satisfy the PC types. Maybe the Atlanta Perimeter Circles would work, unless it would offend the squares that protest team names/mascots/logos.

    • Sign Ahead - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:33 AM

      If they’re really set on Perimeter Circles, then that would make my inner math geek really happy, but I’m sure there are other options between “casually racist” and “deliberately boring”. Let’s call it “Plan B” in case they can’t find something better.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 4:53 PM

        signahead- I strongly suggest you don’t call it plan B. That may be offensive to someone who is pro-life.

    • koufaxmitzvah - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:24 PM

      What I find most absurd is how people take to the internet in order to broadcast themselves as clear dolts who can’t think beyond the scope they were raised. This isn’t about squares not liking circles but rather respecting other people on this planet, especially those whom our fathers/grandfathers (i.e. ancestors) treated as not just play things but as total trash.

      And if you can’t accept this as an understanding to the world of sports logos, then maybe you should just avoid thee conversations in the future No one is trying to change your opinions, Anonymous. We’re just trying to remove ignorance and hate from our lives.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:40 PM

        I can sum this up very easily: do you think changing a few sports teams name will remove ignorance and hate from people? furthermore do you honestly think these teams are perpetuating hatred? Do you think they originally named these teams to generate hatred towards people of Native American decent? I can agree that it may have been a touch of ignorance from the start, but in no way was it meant to breed hate and anger in their direction.

        Its. A. Team. Name. Nothing more.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:52 PM

        Its. A. Team. Name. Nothing more.

        So change it, and eliminate any appearance of racism/bigotry? If it’s not an issue…

      • paperlions - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:54 PM

        Exactly. If it isn’t a big deal….then why the strident defense of inaccurate stereotypes.

      • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 4:51 PM

        I’m defending it because there’s no need to change it. It’s not meant to offend. It’s not meant to hurt. It’s not meant to mock. It’s not meant to generate hatred. It’s not meant to create controversy. It’s not meant to perpetuate a negative sterotype (which I STILL cannot figure out what the negative sterotype is here…). Inversely, people who whine about it are the ones creating controversy, suggesting what they THINK it represents. Generating hatred towards those who are fine with the mascot because it’s just a mascot. Finding offense in something as simple as a logo…. actually let’s stick with that- where is the negative stereotype? I clearly don’t see it. I see a mascot that has been around for decades. Someone please explain to me the negative connotation with these team names. Help me see what I clearly have an issue seeing here…

      • koufaxmitzvah - Dec 27, 2012 at 5:10 PM

        The Indians team name and logo was ultimately designed designating a people as an animal or inanimate object. That’s a fact, whether malicious or not, a group of White Americans were to have mascots.

        If the name The Braves is so important, then don’t place a caricature on the uniform. Sell the merch by name only.

  5. Brian Donohue - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:14 AM

    Used to play softball in Prospect Park Brooklyn with Paul (the writer), way back in the 90’s when he was a kid. Even back then he was a sort of uni-guru, knew stuff about uniforms that I’d never even thought about. I guess sports writing has become a lot like IT, an arena of specialists. I’m not sure if that’s a good thing or not, but then again I’m more of a utility player in my arena. It might be cool if NBC would try an experiment for a week or so: Calcaterra, you’re writing about golf this week; Florio, you get baseball…

  6. hisgirlgotburrelled - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:20 AM

    I clicked the link before reading the second paragraph and was surprised when I saw the Atlanta hat. But they aren’t changing their team name or are going to stop handing out tomahawks at games and stop playing the chop thing every 30 seconds. It’s like putting bacon on a Big Mac, except offensive.

  7. mntreehugger - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:30 AM

    I hope they all wear them with the brim totally flat, like the graphics show. I really love that

    • seeinred87 - Dec 27, 2012 at 6:21 PM

      I don’t want to disagree too vehemently in case you were kidding, but flat bill hats are the worst thing ever. I cringe when I see guys wearing a flat brim with the sticker still on it in public, and I cringe a little harder when I see a pro ballplayer do it.

  8. sometimesimisscandlestick - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:34 AM

    I liked seeing the elephant logo back for the A’s; I haven’t seem that for years. On the other hand, why bother with a separate cap for spring training – let alone home and away?

    • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:36 AM

      The elephant logo is really cool. I read the history. Nice going, A’s.

    • nolanwiffle - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:00 PM

      $trange….I wa$ a$king my$elf that very $ame thing.

    • APBA Guy - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:20 PM

      I like the elephant logo also, but that is some bright yellow on the bill. I’ve gotten to like more gold, like in the alternate home jersey.

    • contraryguy - Dec 27, 2012 at 9:31 PM

      Money money money.

      of course, PETA will probably be coming along to ditch the A’s cap as it depicts an exploited circus animal…

  9. Jackson - Dec 27, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    Over/under on the odds the Braves get a lawsuit filed against them by some special interest group for using that logo?

    • ezthinking - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:55 PM


      • Ducky Medwick - Dec 27, 2012 at 7:45 PM

        I guess I would take the over then…

  10. tc4306 - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:25 PM

    Like the changes by Texas and the Mets. Blue Jays, not so much.

  11. Cereal - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:36 PM

    They look pretty good besides the Braves racist logo. I have NO issue with the Braves team name but that logo is pathetic especially this day & age. The Indians (team name) & Redskins (team name & logo) are a joke & should be changed as well. “Braves” like “Chiefs” is an endearing term to most Native American tribes. The Indians should change their name to the Tribe & the Redskins should change their name to the PigSkins & change their logo to a football of some sort. Its 2013 people, lets be respectful !

  12. rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    Why is nobody mentioning the fact that the new Astros logo looks almost identical to the Texaco gas station logo??

  13. schlom - Dec 27, 2012 at 12:47 PM

    Why the hell is the Padres hat so boring compared to the rest of them? It’s like they went out of their way to design a terrible hat!

  14. indaburg - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:17 PM

    I’m not thrilled with the Rays sunburst. As a small accent on the uni, it looks fine but on a cap by itself, it looks like someone splattered yellow paint. I love the Mr. Met, Mr. Redlegs, and big props to Oakland’s elephant cap. I might have to buy that one. The rest are pretty dull.

    • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 1:55 PM

      Aw, inda, I like the sunburst. Seem cheerful and positive!

      • indaburg - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:28 PM

        As an accent, I like the sunburst. On its own, not so much.

        Btw, I agree with you regarding the Braves logo. It is very difficult to convince people who by birthright are at the top of the socio-economic ladder to see things our way. They just don’t get it.

  15. baseballbarrister - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    So Paul Lukas gives the Mets an A and the Braves an F even though the two hats are similarly designed? What a typical New Yorker; please take your politics elsewhere.

    • natslady - Dec 27, 2012 at 2:31 PM

      Where is he supposed to take them? It’s HIS blog!

      • baseballbarrister - Dec 27, 2012 at 5:57 PM

        No ma’am this was not his personal blog, which I read frequently, this was ESPN. If he wants to write about the issues facing Native Americans he is free to do so; but using this platform to make a cheap political point was tacky and ultimately pointless.

    • rockthered1286 - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      He couldn’t give the Braves anything other than an F or there would be an outcry that he’s prejudice towards Native Americans for liking the hat. And I’m sure in the end, he would be suspended like ESPN does with everyother person that works for them…

  16. bengalsucker - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:21 PM

    Wow I love the Reds’ cap. Don’t know why the “away” cap got a C- though. I may buy that one if I can find it.

    • paperlions - Dec 27, 2012 at 3:57 PM

      I love the fact that Mr. Redlegs has a popped collar.

      • jayscarpa - Dec 27, 2012 at 7:33 PM

        The Yankees caps are fugly. Do the teams design the caps or does MLB do it? Ugh.

        The Mets cap is a winner, I might even get one.

        The Oakland and Houston caps are also very nice.

        Texas should have just gone with the flag, a little bigger, with no T

  17. hcf95688 - Dec 27, 2012 at 8:19 PM

    After reading the outcry here and elsewhere, I will definitley be purchasing a Braves BP cap.

  18. mqcarpenter - Dec 28, 2012 at 9:45 AM

    That braces cap is disgraceful. u how a key player refuses too wear it so there is a real conversation about this coming this spring

    • jerseydevi1 - Dec 28, 2012 at 11:37 AM


  19. jerseydevi1 - Dec 28, 2012 at 11:36 AM

    I’m buying the Braves hat, too. My wife has Cherokee in her heritage and she actually collects alot of this kind of stuff. She says it helps her remember her heritage. There are some she doesn’t like, but we have several old Braves hats and such with this logo on it already. It will be fun to add to the collection.

    Can’t remember who posted it earlier, but I agree with them about all of the “offended” people not doing anything about it. If you are so hurt by it, petition the team to get it changed. Stop going to games and buying the merchandise. Hit them in the wallet and they will listen.

    I am offended that so many people take offense to so many things. Serious question to those who get so upset. How does this affect your life or the lives of your family members? Seriously. Is it so worth getting upset over? I was always taught that the key to taking offense to something is that you do exactly that. You TAKE offense. Nobody gives it to you or forces it on you, you take it. It is a conscious choice that you make. Make the conscious choice to not care and watch how much happier you are.

  20. cosanostra71 - Dec 28, 2012 at 1:44 PM

    I’m not offended by the Braves’ or Indian’s logos, but I still don’t like the Braves’ hat. It is too busy for my taste. Same with the Mets/Reds hats. I personally prefer simplicity. Like the Tigers, Cards or Giants’ hats. I like the Mets/Reds’ logos, but not on a hat. I honestly think it comes down to symmetry- with logos like that, you can’t really achieve it.

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