9 Things To Consider Before You Order Baseball Team Uniforms
Baseball uniforms have as unique and interesting a history as the game itself, with memorable standouts such as the tri-colored caps of the Montreal Expos, the Houston Astros’ rainbow jerseys and the Chicago White Sox’s ill-fated experiment with Bermuda shorts.
Although the look of a uniform is important, there are a lot of far more practical things to consider, especially when choosing youth baseball uniforms. Whether your team is playing at the Little League, high school or college levels, their uniforms need to be a five-tool player — combining style, durability, comfort, versatility and ease of care. Here are a few things to keep in mind the next time you outfit your youth team with custom baseball uniforms that go beyond the team colors.
Choose The Right Manufacturer
There’s no shortage of options for baseball uniforms, but not all of them are created equal. Your players are counting on you to find a manufacturer that can deliver uniforms that will hold up under the rigors of the season, as well as come through in the clutch when it comes to meeting deadlines. Nothing else matters if the provider you choose has a reputation for messing up orders, so shop around and get as much information as you can.
Give The Team A Say
For all the decisions you’ll have to make when choosing uniforms, ultimately the players are the ones who have to wear them on the field. And although you don’t have to let them take the reins and design the entire uniform, it’s a good idea to give the team some say in how the uniforms look. Something you might think is fine might be embarrassing for the team and make them self-conscious when they take the field.
Make Jerseys Stand Out
The color and style of baseball jerseys is important for building team identity and pride, but it also serves a practical purpose. If the team is behind the idea, consider a bright, unusual color for the jerseys to help the team stand out. This will make it easier for players to find their teammates at a crowded tournament. Additionally, a team wearing canary yellow when every other team is wearing black or navy blue may feel like it has a psychological advantage over the rest of the competition because of a unique identity.
Although vests fall in and out of favor in the major leagues, they’re still great options for youth baseball because of their versatility. Being able to combine a vest with different types of undershirts means a team can be more comfortable in different types of weather. Choosing vests over traditional jerseys also might help give the team a distinct look over its competition.
Don’t Forget The Pants
The jersey is the main piece of a uniform that draws attention, but make sure to put as much thought into the pants as the rest of the uniform. Making sure they’re comfortable and fit properly is essential, because no player wants to lose track of a fly ball because he or she was caught by surprise while adjusting his or her pants. Baseball pants also should be highly durable, so be sure to buy from manufacturers with a good reputation for durability.
Pants Should Be Simple
When it comes to choosing the pants for your team’s uniform, keeping things as simple as possible is best. Choosing simple white or gray pants means replacing them will be much easier, because baseball pants are subjected to a lot of abuse from all the sliding and diving players do on the field. If a player tears a big hole in his or her pants during a game, it’s much easier to replace a pair of simple white or gray pants than calling your supplier and finding out your team’s unique camouflage pants are on back order. Keeping the pants simple also gives parents more flexibility if their children play in more than one league.
Make Sure Pants Fit
One thing parents know about kids is that they always seem to hit their growth spurts at inopportune times, like the middle of the baseball season. This will be most noticeable in the pants, where players can suddenly find their cuffs sitting just below their knees. Think about ordering the pants a little longer than normal just in case anyone on the team suddenly sprouts during the season — rolling up the cuffs for a while is better than the alternative. You want your team looking like Steve Garvey, not Steve Urkel.
Think Twice Before Over-Accessorizing
Stirrups are an iconic part of the classic baseball uniform, and many major league teams make them part of their on-field look. However, those major league teams have several people working full-time to make sure those stirrups don’t get lost in the washing machine, among other things. Busy parents of youth baseball players have enough on their plates, so remember to keep uniforms simple and avoid over-accessorizing.
Keep A Deep Bench
You need at least nine players per side for a baseball game, but there’s a reason why teams are larger than nine players. Your uniform orders should follow the same principle — making sure you have extras of everything to come off the bench when needed is essential. You never know when a seam is going to pop, a sock is going to be lost in the dryer or the family dog is going to consider a cap his new chew toy.
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