LA Angels players, other MLB stars not happy with Nike Vapor jerseys

The jerseys were just fine last year.
Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels
Oakland Athletics v Los Angeles Angels / John McCoy/GettyImages

For fans who want to buy authentic jerseys that are used in real games, the total cost lands anywhere between $350 to $450 dollars. These are jerseys that people collect of their favorite players, and are unlikely to be worn routinely, unlike the replicas that run from $90 to $140. What would you say if you had to pay the authentic price for a replica-like jersey, removing all personality and on-field cache?

In 2019, Nike and Major League Baseball entered into a 10-year deal worth over $1 billion to make Nike the official manufacturer of MLB jerseys, distributed through Fanatics. After five years, Fanatics and Nike have changed the design for the uniforms. The reviews just a few days into spring training are less than ideal.

LA Angels OF Taylor Ward’s Thoughts

“It looks like a replica,” Ward said. “It feels kind of like papery. It could be great when you’re out there sweating, it may be breathable. But I haven’t had that opportunity yet to try that out. But from the looks of it, it doesn’t look like a $450 dollar jersey. So far, thumbs own.”

The new style is called “Nike Vapor Premier” It is supposed to be softer, lighter, and stretchier than its previous products. All I hear is cheaper.

Carlos Estévez's Thoughts

Carlos Estévez had some stronger words, calling them the same feel as wearing another person’s pants. Customization, which might as well be the key to anyone feeling comfortable in any uniform, is limited by the way the pants are made. Baseball is the one sport where size doesn’t matter as much for being a good player. That makes baseball players' bodies very unique, and not as uniform as, say, basketball or soccer.

What others in MLB are saying about new jerseys

Comments like, “they look cheap” or “they don’t fit right” have been spreading over almost all of the spring training sites, in both Arizona and Florida. This has now gotten the MLBPA involved, according to The Athletic. Most of the “praise” they've gotten has emanated from players who have deals with Nike, like Nolan Arenado and Adley Rutschman. Mike Trout, also a Nike athlete, has praised the new attire.

The design of the jerseys’ lettering has been the main issue with players. For example, the names on the jerseys are rounded around the back, similar to those we've seen in the past for players with long last names. In this case, that’s just the design. Majestic jerseys never had these kind of problems.

The segment below on "Foul Territory" goes into detail on the differences.

For you Seinfeld fans, you know how cotton jerseys went over for the New York Yankees in that show. This isn’t going over well, and MLB players will have a say in the end.