Over the years many forms of baseball have been played. From stick ball to making gloves out of milk cartons to high tech bats and gloves. As the game enhances so do the uniforms. Starting from where it all began, 1849. In this time period a club was formed, called the New Your Knickerbockers. They adopted the first uniforms.
The uniforms included blue woolen pantaloons, white flannel shirts and chip (straw) hats. Although a few years later the blue and white uniform became the team colors. In 1868 pants or knickers became popular as well as the new style for baseball teams.
In 1882 to determine each players position you would look at their
multi-colored uniform. The first basemen with caps for example. Some teams almost
looked a little like clowns. In 1888 the New York Yankees became the first team
to wear pinstripes. A year later the first checked uniforms were worn by the
As the years passed by the unique trends of uniforms become more comfortable
so players could stand the heat, bear the cold and move! Baseball players now,
sure are glad they don’t wear the thick uniforms some players wore before
them. The baseball uniform also includes many parts that help the player. The
caps were not just used on the field but many of the fans wore them too. The
New York Knickerbockers first used straw hats but later on switched to caps.
These caps were made of soft, wool called merino. The numbers and names on the
back of the jerseys were used so announcers could say “NOW BATTING”
and then the name on the shirt. The names of the team are placed on the front
of the jersey. This was to identify one team fromanother.
The jerseys changed as well. In the 1850’s baseball uniforms had shields
on the front. Later around 1870 the jerseys were worn with laces on the front
to tie them. The button down jerseys came in the mid 1880s. Soon the so-called
clown costumes came after that. In the 19th century the pinstripes and checked
jerseys were in style. Also in the 19th century the full sized collar was seen
on the jerseys. In the 1930s to 1940s the zipper up and wool jerseys were invented.
The wool didn’t last long, they were too hot in the summer. Next came
the vests. The cubs first shown the style of vests with shirts underneath. Pullovers
became popular for the Pittsburg Pirates.
Moving on to the bottom half of the uniform, baseball started out with trousers. These trousers became a problem, because the bottom of the pants got caught on the shoes. This was prevented when buttons were created so the opening of the pants were closed. Belts were used in the 1850’s and 60’s. They were not only used for keeping the players pants up but they were also used for decoration. In the 1880’s padding was added to these pants for protection. Belt tunnels were created in 1910 to prevent the belts from getting caught onto things. In the 19th century the fashion of wearing the baseball pants higher so the stockings or socks became popular. In the 1980’s baseball players began to wear their pants very low to their shoes.
Going down to the very bottom of the uniform are the shoes worn by baseball athletes. This part of the uniform is very important. In the 1870’s companies made baseball shoes out of leather. Top players only wore spikes in the 1860’s. 1967 was the year of color for these brown, leather shoes. The color began to match the uniforms of the players. In 1970 manufacturers made shoes with little bumps on the bottom, without the spikes so the shoes did not harm the surface. Plastic bottoms were introduced in the 1980’s. As you can see the sport of baseball has changed, as well as the uniform!