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About the Nats new uniforms and the Curly W

By Dan Steinberg

(Photos by Katherine Frey - TWP)


When the Nationals gathered VIPs, sponsors, season-ticket holders and media members for a fashion show Wednesday night, there were pre-event cocktails, and pre-event cocktail napkins, adorned with a blue Curly W logo. That should have been a clue.

Thirty minutes after the drinks were poured, the team's second major uniform change in three years had been revealed, and there were a whole lot more Curly Ws in the building. The new home uniform will have a Curly W on the left chest instead of the old block "Nationals." The patriotic blue alternate uniform will have a red-white-and-blue Curly W on its chest. The sleeves of all four jerseys will be adorned with the team's new primary logo, featuring a Curly W. The interlocking D.C. is now called "miscellaneous art," and doesn't appear on the uniforms.

"We accomplished what we wanted to - something sharp and different and with more emphasis on the Curly W, which is what everyone wanted," owner Mark Lerner told me after the affair. "Everyone wants the W."

Well, they're going to get it. There are also a host of other changes, outlined below:



Home Weekday Uniforms

* Red numbers with blue outline were added to the right chest.
* Blue and red piping was moved to the placket, which brackets the buttons.
* The names and numbers on the backs are now red with a blue outline, and there's no more gold.
* Red and blue piping was added to the pants.

Road Uniforms

* Gold trim was removed from the numbers on the backs.

Red Alternate Uniforms

* Blue piping was added to the white piping on the front.
* Gold trim was removed from the numbers on the backs.

Patriotic/Blue Alternate Uniforms

* Gold trim was removed from the numbers on the backs.

All four models have the piping moved to the end of the sleeves, and the new primary logo added to the left sleeve.The road hat is a darker blue, with a red bill, for both the gray and the patriotic blue uniforms.

But the Curly W is the headliner here.

"From a brand perspective, our ability to develop the Curly W into something that's iconic and instantly recognizable and understood is exactly what we're about," COO Andy Feffer told the media. "And the more equity that we can build in that simple, easy to understood symbol and what it stands for - youth energy, authenticity ... If we're able to communicate that in an authentic way that really resonates, it's a much more effective play. And oh by the way, it looks great. You'll see it on TV, it'll pop, it's simple to understand."

Simple to spell, too, as the wags immediately noted. The home jerseys will never again be misspelled, unless someone forgets how to spell "W."

The baseball people said they were on board, especially praising the white home jerseys for their brighter white and cleaner overall look.

"Like the Dodgers uniforms," Ryan Zimmerman said.

"It's sort of a clean, professional baseball look," Mike Rizzo said. "Kind of no frills. I really like the clean look, especially the white uniform, how the white pops out there."

"The white one actually has a little bit more character to it," Ian Desmond said. "It's not expansion team-y, with the big block lettering across it. It kind of gives us a little character. Hopefully we can live up to it."





The block Nationals will remain on the scoreboard, and Feffer said it could still be used in merchandise and promotions. But the focus is squarely on Ws.

"It'll be part of the scoreboard, the game presentation, marketing materials, merchandising, all of those elements will express the same, simple look and feel that fans have told us that they love," Feffer said. "More than anything what they express in their interviews and their discussion with us: they want to see more of the Curly W. They believe that's the one unique element that represents our players, our fans and our city....

"We wanted something unique and different. We don't want to be a Me-Too brand of the Phillies or the Mets or the Braves or anyone else. We wanted something to differentiate ourselves, not only within this marketplace but within baseball. And I think you can see from that it's something very unique and different. And it will stand out. If you lined up all the jerseys of all the teams across a wall and you looked at that, you would immediately see that the Nationals stand out as something different."

"The Curly W logo, that's our main logo, and we decided to go with that," Mike Rizzo said. "We felt that the Curly W was the way to go."

By Dan Steinberg  | November 10, 2010; 8:34 PM ET
Categories:  Nats  
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Next: Zimmerman on Cliff Lee, Gold Glove, Adam Dunn

Comments

Naah, doesn't look AT ALL like the Walgreens curly "W"....

Posted by: Juan-John1 | November 10, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Walgreens called. They want their curly W back.

Posted by: wahoo2x | November 10, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Looking at the last picture, the emphasis is on two things - the Curly W, and the colors red, white, and blue. Not liking red bill on the road hats (looks too much like Atlanta). In 3 years, I'm sure they'll be tweaked again, because we'll all own this gear by then.

Posted by: kingrob76 | November 10, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

As a huge uniform guy, I love that you spent so much time on something like this. Great stuff as always, Steinz.

Posted by: MichaelJenkins | November 10, 2010 9:27 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Senators had the curly W before Walgreens was established

Posted by: sweetw | November 10, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Senators had the curly W before Walgreens was established

Posted by: sweetw | November 10, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

"In 3 years, I'm sure they'll be tweaked again, because we'll all own this gear by then."

They'll have to redesign the uniforms in three years because they'll have to say Portland, Las Vegas or Charlotte.

Posted by: dugly2ugly | November 10, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse

I don't like them. The red alternate is fine and I've never like that red, white, and blue alternat. It looks too gimicky. But why change the white jersey to match the alternate jerseys? I think the white jerseys from last year great.

Posted by: poeticfire | November 10, 2010 11:20 PM | Report abuse

So, I live in Arkansas, and most people don't have any idea who the Nationals are. The other day I had on my cap with the curly W and a guy came up to me and said, "Oh, you work at Walgreen's, me too." No joke.

Posted by: MrDumberton | November 11, 2010 1:17 AM | Report abuse

Agreed about the road hats, but I yes on the new home jerseys. A thousand times yes.

Posted by: jaycane40oz | November 11, 2010 1:21 AM | Report abuse

the blue alternate is an abomination. Really, I just don't get it. Who actually agreed to that one? Amazingly stupid. I couldn't be happier to be rid of the gold trim and block letters. Given that, I'm meh on the new home red/white unis. They're fine. I would have preferred Washington script, or even Nationals script...but it'll do pig, it'll do.

Now for what really torques me --- why in the name of God did the Nats do away with the all blue road hat in favor of a Walgreens/Braves rip-off? Get rid of that stupid-ass red bill. Honestly, who comes up with this trash and who approves it?

Overall - FAIL. Trash the red bills and burn the blue jerseys and I may stop vomiting.

Posted by: DisgustedinArlington | November 11, 2010 2:09 AM | Report abuse

Aww, I actually liked the interlocking DC. So few of the teams (outside of the DC United, obviously) incorporate the DC into their merchandise.

Posted by: NotoriousREG | November 11, 2010 3:31 AM | Report abuse

Great Uniforms: Clean and classic.

Posted by: cr8oncsu | November 11, 2010 5:48 AM | Report abuse

The road uniform is still better, though I dont like the change to the two-color hat.

The home uniform is moving in the right direction, though I am still partial to the original Senators home uniform with the block W. Guess we'll never see that again, except on nostalgia days.

WHat they really need to change are the bats -- to the ones with hits in them.

Posted by: Meridian1 | November 11, 2010 6:06 AM | Report abuse

Who the heck is Curly and when did he become our mascot? Where are Larry and Moe?

Oh, that's right...manager and GM.

Posted by: howjensen | November 11, 2010 6:42 AM | Report abuse

I like the new white home jerseys, very clean looking. The old Natinals jersey was pretty generic.

I don't like the red bill on the road hats. It seems like that was changed for the sake of change and not much else. My favorite hat that I own is my navy blue curly W Nats hat, wear it all the time.

Posted by: Fitz157 | November 11, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse

I'm also not feeling the two-tone away hat. It doesn't seem to fit with the away uniform, and it smacks of several other hats in MLB.

Posted by: JohninMpls | November 11, 2010 8:12 AM | Report abuse

Big improvement on the old jerseys. The "Nationals" looked like it was made using Word 2003's Word Art feature (although at least that would have had spell check). I will miss the interlocking DC though.

About the poll at the end on the best looking DC jersey, I wish instead we could vote on the worst. Skins, Caps, (New) Nationals, United, are all great jerseys. But can Leonsis just scrap the Wizards entirely...

Posted by: mmbDC | November 11, 2010 9:26 AM | Report abuse

I'm not feeling the red bill on the road hats. At all. It reminds me of the Braves. The all blue road hat, however, was just clean and classic. Easily my favorite. Looks like I'm gonna have to buy 2-3 more all blue road hats before they sell out!

Also, I was hoping for a script "Nationals" on the primary home jersey. I wouldn't call these unis a mess, but the only jersey I would even consider buying is the is the road gray with the script "Washington."

Posted by: MEssex | November 11, 2010 9:40 AM | Report abuse

I'm not feeling the red bill on the road hats. At all. It reminds me of the Braves. The all blue road hat, however, was just clean and classic. Easily my favorite. Looks like I'm gonna have to buy 2-3 more all blue road hats before they sell out!

Also, I was hoping for a script "Nationals" on the primary home jersey. I wouldn't call these unis a mess, but the only jersey I would even consider buying is the is the road gray with the script "Washington."

Posted by: MEssex | November 11, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Sorry for the double post...

Posted by: MEssex | November 11, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

Sorry for the double post...

Posted by: MEssex | November 11, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

from the comments here...I'm glad to see I was not the only one who is upset about the solid Blue Road hat.

BOO!!...KEEP THE SOLID BLUE HAT!! It was the best thing of their whole uniform line up.

The 'alternate' nonsense is ugly and always has been...who the hell keeps pushing that trashy look.

The new white jerseys look nice,...never liked the red ones...we look like a cheap Cincinnati copy (thank you
Bowden!).

Suggestion: Home uniforms thin blue pin stripe, with a thin blue 'Nationals' script across the front.

Posted by: arioch666 | November 11, 2010 9:52 AM | Report abuse

I think this was a missed opportunity. I generally like the curly "W" on the home whites---much, much better than the old block letters, and even better than the prototype script that was floating around. Not a huge fan of the red and blue piping. And I think the road hat would look better with a red top and blue bill. The blue alts remain an abomination. So this is an improvement, but not a home run.

Posted by: jcj5y | November 11, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Ya daggone right everybody wants the W!!

I like it.

Posted by: walkdwalk | November 11, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

I don't give a flaming farkle what they look like, as long as they WIN!

Posted by: justmike | November 11, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

+++++"In 3 years, I'm sure they'll be tweaked again, because we'll all own this gear by then."

They'll have to redesign the uniforms in three years because they'll have to say Portland, Las Vegas or Charlotte.


Posted by: dugly2ugly | November 10, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse ++++++

Always love hearing from those nonsense speaking fans who know absolutely nothing about sports and can only hope they can chime in enough knowledge to make them sound like they aren't talking out of their behinds.

Unfortunately, it didn't work for ya this time dugly. Perhaps you can try to swindle over a basketball conversation on the Wizards board. Just talk about Gilbert Arenas and guns, that should be enough to get ya through!

Posted by: RobInVaBeach | November 11, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

+++++"In 3 years, I'm sure they'll be tweaked again, because we'll all own this gear by then."

They'll have to redesign the uniforms in three years because they'll have to say Portland, Las Vegas or Charlotte.


Posted by: dugly2ugly | November 10, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse ++++++

Always love hearing from those nonsense speaking fans who know absolutely nothing about sports and can only hope they can chime in enough knowledge to make them sound like they aren't talking out of their behinds.

Unfortunately, it didn't work for ya this time dugly. Perhaps you can try to swindle over a basketball conversation on the Wizards board. Just talk about Gilbert Arenas and guns, that should be enough to get ya through!

Posted by: RobInVaBeach | November 11, 2010 11:15 AM | Report abuse

+++++"In 3 years, I'm sure they'll be tweaked again, because we'll all own this gear by then."

They'll have to redesign the uniforms in three years because they'll have to say Portland, Las Vegas or Charlotte.


Posted by: dugly2ugly | November 10, 2010 10:59 PM | Report abuse ++++++

Always love hearing from those nonsense speaking fans who know absolutely nothing about sports and can only hope they can chime in enough knowledge to make them sound like they aren't talking out of their behinds.

Unfortunately, it didn't work for ya this time dugly. Perhaps you can try to swindle over a basketball conversation on the Wizards board. Just talk about Gilbert Arenas and guns, that should be enough to get ya through!

Posted by: RobInVaBeach | November 11, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Good:
**Getting rid of the WordArt-like "Natinals." Glad someone else felt the same.

Bad:
**The altnerates are horrible.
**The red bill, horrible. Trying too hard. Makes and OK hat for a fan to wear sans a uniform.

FONT
I HATE the font they use for the numbers. Looks like something you'd see on a football team.

Posted by: jetodd24 | November 11, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

Good:
**Getting rid of the WordArt-like "Natinals." Glad someone else felt the same.

Bad:
**The altnerates are horrible.
**The red bill, horrible. Trying too hard. Makes and OK hat for a fan to wear sans a uniform.

FONT
I HATE the font they use for the numbers. Looks like something you'd see on a football team.

Posted by: jetodd24 | November 11, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Good:
**Getting rid of the WordArt-like "Natinals." Glad someone else felt the same.

Bad:
**The altnerates are horrible.
**The red bill, horrible. Trying too hard. Makes and OK hat for a fan to wear sans a uniform.

FONT
I HATE the font they use for the numbers. Looks like something you'd see on a football team.

Posted by: jetodd24 | November 11, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Good with the home and road uniforms. I'd skip the alt.s entirely. Red hats at home and (solid) blue on the road would be classic, like the Cardinals.

Posted by: mcstowy | November 11, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

The Nationals curly W has to go. It is too much like the Walgreens logo, which does predate the second Senators franchise. (Look up their recent trademark infringement suit.) Not only that, it harkens back too much to that dreadful second Senators franchise of the 1960s. Why should the transported Expos honor that franchise when it played no bigger a role in the history of DC baseball than the Homestead Grays, much less the original Washington Nationals of Walter Johnson? It is just a marketing gimmick for a certain age group remembering their youth and the Frank Howard team. I wish they would come up with an altogether new name and uniform.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | November 11, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

The Nationals curly W has to go. It is too much like the Walgreens logo, which does predate the second Senators franchise. (Look up their recent trademark infringement suit.) Not only that, it harkens back too much to that dreadful second Senators franchise of the 1960s. Why should the transported Expos honor that franchise when it played no bigger a role in the history of DC baseball than the Homestead Grays, much less the original Washington Nationals of Walter Johnson? It is just a marketing gimmick for a certain age group remembering their youth and the Frank Howard team. I wish they would come up with an altogether new name and uniform.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | November 11, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

I think the gray Washington uniform looks great. Simple yet classic.

Posted by: charley42 | November 11, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Senators had the curly W before Walgreens was established

Posted by: sweetw | November 10, 2010 9:30 PM | Report abuse

No, Walgreens had that logo since 1951. The second Senators were not around yet.

Posted by: poncedeleroy | November 11, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

hahahahahahahaha....the Riggleman Roadkill LOSER insignia "curly W"...HATED it from Day 1 ...it's their posterboard for HOPELESSNESS....... YOU CAN NOT BE SERIOUS !!! How out of touch...can the Front Office suits get !!!!!!

Posted by: GRIMReaper55 | November 11, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Who care's about the uniform? All they have to do is WINNNN some games, and people will follow and buy any garbage they sell.

Posted by: Thecrazyone | November 11, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

5 out of 6 seasons in DEAD LAST...with # 6 pretty much a given....keep using that LOSER "curly W"...and while you're at it....lose 102 in 2011 so you can go an even 400 "L" over 4......

Posted by: GRIMReaper55 | November 11, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Who care's about the uniform? All they have to do is WINNNN some games, and people will follow and buy any garbage they sell.

Posted by: Thecrazyone | November 11, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

The new basic white uniform is fine, though I would have preferred no piping and royal blue pinstripes. Also, on all three home uniforms, the number should have been at chest level, parallel with the "W" (similar to the Phillies jerseys of the Mike Schmidt era).

OK for the most part, as long as the Nats keep the horrid "stars and stripes" blue alternate to a minimum. And instead of a quasi-Braves road cap, the front section should have been made red (echoing the home cap), with the rest in blue.

Posted by: VPaterno | November 11, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Here's a concept: home whites, road grays, no alternates. Thank goodness my Detroit Tigers haven't resorted to this junk. The only thing I like about the Yankees and Dodgers is that they have held the line as well. The Giants have classic home and road uniforms, but then they couldn't control themselves and had to trot out a horrible looking gold alternate.

As for the Nationals, I agree that the gray Washington road uniform looks nice. As another poster said, simple yet classic. I don't know why they don't have a home uniform in the same style, white with "Nationals" across the chest (kind of like the Dodgers home uniforms). The red alternate looks almost identical to what the Reds wear sometimes, with the "C" in the same spot as the "W."

Posted by: AuburnTiger87 | November 11, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

I guess my last post was erased, but let me say again: Epic Fail on the new uniforms. I want so much to be a positive reaction when it comes to all things Nationals, but again an Epic Fail. Are they really "new" uniforms? It looks like a muddled, recycled old uniform. You got rid of the Nationals on front of the home and threw another Curly W up. Almost like they didn't try. Or is it to save money on thread? I do like that the gold outline is gone. But that could have been just to save on thread costs. They missed the boat again to create a strong, classic look. I think everyone would have liked the home whites with a thin navy pin stripe, Nationals in a red with Navy outline script. Navy Blue solid cap with the white curly W there. Let it be known I hate the Yankees. But the thin navy blue pinstripes would look great. And what's with the facination of the red home hats? If you look at hat sales, I am willing to bet that the solid navy blue hats far out sell the red. Is it because the marketing department would have to abandon the "get your red on" campaign. Clever. I hate to be negative, because I want this team to become a winning, successful big market team it should be. I'm done. Don't get me started on Carlos Pena being a big acquisition. Or B. Webb. I hope he becomes the pitcher he was, but I don't want to pin our hopes on that.

Posted by: NatsFD11 | November 11, 2010 3:53 PM | Report abuse

I guess my last post was erased, but let me say again: Epic Fail on the new uniforms. I want so much to be a positive reaction when it comes to all things Nationals, but again an Epic Fail. Are they really "new" uniforms? It looks like a muddled, recycled old uniform. You got rid of the Nationals on front of the home and threw another Curly W up. Almost like they didn't try. Or is it to save money on thread? I do like that the gold outline is gone. But that could have been just to save on thread costs. They missed the boat again to create a strong, classic look. I think everyone would have liked the home whites with a thin navy pin stripe, Nationals in a red with Navy outline script. Navy Blue solid cap with the white curly W there. Let it be known I hate the Yankees. But the thin navy blue pinstripes would look great. And what's with the facination of the red home hats? If you look at hat sales, I am willing to bet that the solid navy blue hats far out sell the red. Is it because the marketing department would have to abandon the "get your red on" campaign. Clever. I hate to be negative, because I want this team to become a winning, successful big market team it should be. I'm done. Don't get me started on Carlos Pena being a big acquisition. Or B. Webb. I hope he becomes the pitcher he was, but I don't want to pin our hopes on that.

Posted by: NatsFD11 | November 11, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I guess my last post was erased, but let me say again: Epic Fail on the new uniforms. I want so much to be a positive reaction when it comes to all things Nationals, but again an Epic Fail. Are they really "new" uniforms? It looks like a muddled, recycled old uniform. You got rid of the Nationals on front of the home and threw another Curly W up. Almost like they didn't try. Or is it to save money on thread? I do like that the gold outline is gone. But that could have been just to save on thread costs. They missed the boat again to create a strong, classic look. I think everyone would have liked the home whites with a thin navy pin stripe, Nationals in a red with Navy outline script. Navy Blue solid cap with the white curly W there. Let it be known I hate the Yankees. But the thin navy blue pinstripes would look great. And what's with the facination of the red home hats? If you look at hat sales, I am willing to bet that the solid navy blue hats far out sell the red. Is it because the marketing department would have to abandon the "get your red on" campaign. Clever. I hate to be negative, because I want this team to become a winning, successful big market team it should be. I'm done. Don't get me started on Carlos Pena being a big acquisition. Or B. Webb. I hope he becomes the pitcher he was, but I don't want to pin our hopes on that.

Posted by: NatsFD11 | November 11, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

** D C **
The letter "W" is still dead to me.

Posted by: KSVA | November 11, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Curly W, represents nothing. D.C. "represents" Washington, D.C. However, those that like the curly W, aren't the types that represent D.C.

Posted by: Theone9 | November 11, 2010 5:56 PM | Report abuse

New home uniforms: ugly, particularly the "patriotic" blue one.

New road hat: If I want a two-tone cap, I'll buy an Atlanta cap.

The Curly W makes me think I'm ordering a sandwich at Arby's: Do you want Curly W Fries with that?

Time to buy some of the obsolete all-blue road hats.

Posted by: sasquatchbigfoot | November 11, 2010 6:28 PM | Report abuse

AWFUL!!! Bring back the block lettering with the gold trimming (home and away), they where the nicest in baseball. Red and gold is an awesome combo! (So is blue and gold) Everyone was identifying with those jerseys and becoming tradition like The Rockies, Royals,Yankees, Tigers and Dodgers who have never changed their jersey. I’m so tired of teams changing to try to make money. I like the curly W but on the hats only. I heard so much that the hats didn’t match the jerseys, but The Dodgers have a scripted jersey and block lettering on their hat. Nobody says anything about that. It looks so bad that the team name is not on the jersey. It’s like they are ashamed to be The Nationals. If they are, then change the name to Senators. That’s what everyone wants anyway and the mayor is gone so he can’t protests it any longer. I read that The Rangers don’t have the rights to the name, just the script lettering on the jersey. The block red and gold lettering would look awesome spelling out Senators!

Posted by: gam456al | November 12, 2010 4:42 AM | Report abuse

me no like. the blue one is egads ugly and the red ones look clownish. i like the gray (but not the red brim) and am unoffended by the white. wish they just went with a white script nationals and introduced a funky throwback senators patch.

Posted by: PindarPushkin | November 12, 2010 2:07 PM | Report abuse

Seriously disappointing. What's the point of having alternate jerseys if the only thing alternate about them is the color? Bring back the red DC jerseys and red DC hat. The curly W is fine and if there is this supposed fan base out there that wants it, fine, whatever, but that's not a reason to not have any variety, and I think the DC looks better anyway. The 2009 change from the red DC jerseys to the red curly W winnie-the-pooh pajamas jersey was really weak. I can't believe they took their dumbest jersey and changed the rest of them to model it. Maybe next year they'll change to a curly E for error.

Posted by: timmy12 | November 13, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

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