Rob Manfred: New MLB Jerseys Will Become ‘Really Popular’

Beginning this season, all 30 teams around Major League Baseball are sporting a new jersey template introduced by Nike.

Some fairly large changes have been made to the jerseys, including a number of color changes that were once unique to each team. The Los Angeles Dodgers jersey includes a much narrower placket than the old one, which most prominently has resulted in the second “d” being broken into separate pieces.

An outcry from players around the league hasn’t been overly positive. Although the new MLB jersey design aimed to be better for on-field wear, several players complained about the quality.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred recently discussed how some time with the jerseys will flip the overall feelings on them, per David Schoenfield of ESPN:

“The jerseys are different,” Manfred said. “They’re designed to be performance wear as opposed to what’s been traditionally worn, so they are going to be different. But they have been tested more extensively than any jersey in any sport. The feedback from the All-Star Game last year where the jerseys were worn was uniformly positive from the players, so I think after people wear them a little bit, they’re going to be really popular.”

The fabric for front numbers of all jerseys is now perforated, with a smaller typography and a lower placement. Also including a tighter arch in a player’s nameplate, it’s a change that has been the biggest sticking point for those against the jersey swap.

MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark expressed his hope for corrections to be made in time for Opening Day this week.

Fanatics founder and CEO Michael Rubin said that while his company has taken the brunt of criticism for the new MLB jersey template, they merely are following detailed manufacturing instructions from Nike.

Jason Heyward approves of new Nike MLB jersey

Dodgers’ Jason Heyward was among the few big league players to openly endorse the change in jerseys, citing the authentic feel and performance boost they might have.

Per Nike, the new high-performance fabric was made from at least 90% recycled polyester yarns and provides 25% more stretch and allows the jersey to dry 28% faster with moisture-wicking Dri-Fit ADV technology.

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