New Orioles Unis: That's How To Do It
Well, that's better. One week after the Washington Nationals unveiled a poorly-conceived remake of its player uniforms, the Baltimore Orioles are out with their new fashions, and they're not only classy looking, but they also reflect a thoughtful new repositioning of the franchise.
By restoring the word "Baltimore" to their jerseys for the first time since the last Washington Senators left the mid-Atlantic states with but one baseball franchise, the Orioles are coming home to Maryland fans and abandoning their half-hearted and ultimately failed effort to attract fans from the Washington area.
To make that decision even plainer, the team has a new armpatch logo consisting of the main elements of the Maryland state flag.
Like the Nats, the O's have gone back to the future, adopting a traditional script on the front of the uniform. But unlike the Nats, there's no gimmickry here, no special garish Fourth of July red, white and blue unis. It's a clean look and, for the Orioles, a clean break with the Virginia and Washington fans who had been a key focus of the franchise for three decades.
The competition between the two teams now centers on the Maryland suburbs, which have been the weak spot in the Nats' fan base so far during their short existence. By adopting a stronger Maryland identity, the Orioles appear to be making a play for the allegiance of those who face traffic challenges whether they go north or south to a ballpark.
But it would be foolish for the Lerners to give up on those Maryland fans, and they won't. Watch for them to step up their promotions, especially in Montgomery County, which should be every bit as big a part of the Nats' foundation, yet which so far accounts for far less attendance than the Virginians who are the biggest part of the Nats's success.
Who knew so much could be packed into a mere uniform?
By Marc Fisher |
November 12, 2008; 4:10 PM ET
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