MLB has really been experimental with jersey designs since Nike took over as the uniform sponsor. City Connect has given us a collection of mixed results, with some uniforms being great, some being terrible, and every level in between.
Look at Nike All-Star Jerseys
As far as All-Star jerseys go, it doesn’t seem like Nike has really cracked the code on a good all-star jersey. Gone are the days of 2006-2019 when all-Star uniforms were unique and thematic to the team and city they belonged to. While they weren’t worn during the games during those years, they were seen during the home run derby, and fans still flocked to purchase them. All-Star uniforms during this time were demonstrations of creativity with exploding colors and motifs.
Nike’s first attempt at an all-star jersey came in dead on arrival in 2021 in Denver, Colorado. In Nike’s defense, the color of these uniforms clearly indicate these were meant for Atlanta and did not have time to change the colors when MLB switched the location to Colorado due to social and political demonstrations. However, regardless of the colors, most fans agreed the uniforms were not appealing to the eye at all.
Nike’s second attempt came in 2022 in Dodger Stadium. This time, each uniform was the National League teams proper home uniform with gold lettering, and each American League uniform was each teams away uniform in a darker gray, and still with gold lettering. In both 2021 and 2022, Nike did not include “American” or “National” on the front of the jerseys. While fans seemed to agree this was a step up from the previous year, they had yet to capture the awe and inspiration of all-star uniforms of the past. One cannot help but wonder, if Los Angeles had been selected in previous years, these uniforms would have been themed around Hollywood.
2023 All-Star Jerseys
Now, we arrive at the 2023 all-star jerseys in T-Mobile Park in Seattle. While the uniforms aren’t anything revolutionary, they are Nikes best step so far in the right direction. First and foremost, the uniforms actually say American and National, just like the good old days. American League uniforms are teal, National League uniforms are navy blue, properly using the hosting teams colors for the first time in years. Creatively, the uniforms have a unique pattern to them that looks like murky water. This adds a nice personal touch nodding to the Mariners being themed around the ocean. Plus, Seattle is known for cloudy sky’s, so it makes sense to have a cloudy looking uniform.
Looking at the font, there is a cleaver use of the mariners compass logo around the MLB logo substituting as the last “a” in the words “American” and “National”. Again, it’s a small detail that gives a personal touch to the hosting team. The rest of the font is fine. It is perfectly readable and easy to spot from a distance. Still though, one can’t help but wonder how much more elaborate the lettering would be in previous years, maybe including the space needle. Fun fact though, these uniforms will be made from recycled polyester, which is a trend MLB will be looking to continue next year.
Overall, this is Nike’s best all star uniform so far. While it does not completely capture the creativity of all-star uniforms in from the decade and a half prior, it does take steps back into that direction by at least keeping the hosting team’s aesthetic in mind.
Let us know your thoughts on the newest Nike All-Star jerseys, and how they compare to those used in past all-star games in the comments below!