Minor league baseball teams have been coming up with crazy ballpark promotions since the dawn of time. However, right now, we are in the middle of a golden age of wacky jerseys.
Major league ball clubs can’t just wear all kinds of goofy promotional jerseys, of course, because it would hurt their brand. But minor league clubs? With them it’s what brand? They just need to put butts in the seats. And while crazy food items were all the rage about five or six years ago, recently the PR folks have discovered that nothing puts butts in the seats quite like ridiculous themed jerseys.
Want to take a look at some of these jerseys? Well I hope so, because they are the subject of today’s list. Take a look, because I’m sure you’ll get a kick out of them.
Let's start with something simple, shall we? So how about this nice argyle jersey from the Fort Wayne Tincaps, Class A affiliates of the San Diego Padres. This might be the only jersey that almost looks good.
21. Argyle Jerseys – Fort Wayne Tincaps
"Hey, everybody loves Batman, right? Why not Batpig?" Such was the thinking of the legendary Lehigh Valley IronPigs PR department when they came up with this one.
20. Batpig Jerseys – Lehigh Valley IronPigs
Here's another one from the IronPigs, Triple-A affiliate of the Phillies. This time it's a jersey based on Michael Jackson's outfit in the Thriller...though for some reason they went with black pants, even though MJ wore red pants in the video.
19. Michael Jackson Thriller Jerseys – Lehigh Valley IronPigs
I suspect every minor league baseball team in America has worn an American Flag-inspired jersey. But this one from the Triple-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins stood out for me.
18. Stars & Stripes Jerseys – Rochester Red Wings
Wearing Santa jerseys for "Christmas in July" promotions is also pretty popular. But again, these Santa jerseys from the Twins' Double-A affiliate just stood out for me. I think it's the belt buckle.
17. Santa Jerseys – New Britain Rock Cats
The Toledo Mud Hens, Triple-A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, are legend when it comes to ballpark promotions. They outdid every other teams' Santa-themed jerseys by wearing these babies—elves and Santas—in a day-night double header.
Earlier this year we told you about the IronPigs' bacon-theme uniforms. The jerseys? Yeah, there's a strip of bacon underneath "IronPigs," and that's cool. But the best part of the uniform—and maybe the best detail in any baseball uniform ever—is the bacon piping down the side of the pants.
15. Bacon Jerseys – Lehigh Valley IronPigs
The Durham Bulls are not the baseball equivalent of the Anaheim Ducks. They are not a franchise based on a movie. In their case the movie—1988's Bull Durham—was based on them.
Oh yeah, and here they are wearing sweet R2-D2 jerseys.
14. R2-D2 Jerseys – Durham Bulls
In case you didn't realize it, Memphis aint just a city in Tennessee. It's also a city in Egypt that just so happened to be the capital of the ancient Egyptian "Lower Kingdom." So that's why the St. Louis Cardinals' Triple-A affiliate Memphis Redbirds wore these jerseys...which are all-caps RIDICULOUS.
13. Egyptian Jerseys – Memphis Redbirds
There's a lot to like about these amazing The Price Is Right jerseys from the San Francisco Giants' Triple-A affiliate. However, what really sells them for me are the name tags. Just brilliant.
12. Price Is Right Jerseys – Fresno Grizzlies
Okay, so technically the Lowell Spinners (Single-A affiliate of the Red Sox) didn't "wear" these ugly Christmas sweater jerseys. They just gave them out to the first 1,000 fans. But I just had to include them. They're too horrific.
11. Ugly Xmas Sweater Jerseys – Lowell Spinners
Yep, it's the IronPigs again, this time in Tuxedo jerseys. I told you they were legendary, didn't I?
10. Tuxedo Jerseys – Lehigh Valley IronPigs
And I also told you the Toledo Mud Hens were legendary, too, a claim which is supported by these amazing hot dog jerseys.
N.B. that the hot dogs on these jerseys do not have ketchup, because everyone knows ketchup ruins hot dogs.
9. Hot Dog Jerseys – Toledo Mud Hens
That's right. The Fresno Grizzlies will wear Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles jerseys on August 4, 2014....which is a crazy coincidence, because the new TMNT movie comes out four days later!
8. TMNT Jerseys – Fresno Grizzlies
This is a pretty solid effort from the Phillie's Doulbe-A affiliate. However, do I feel pretty strongly that they would have looked way awesomer had the pinstripes on the pants matched the pinstripes on the jersey.
7. Old Fashioned Hot Dog Vendor Jerseys – Reading Fightin Phils
The Toledo Mud Hens will see the Durham Bulls' R2-D2 jerseys and raise them these awesome Chewbacca jerseys.
6. Chewbacca Jerseys – Toledo Mud Hens
The aforementioned Redbirds of Memphis wore these crazy things on "Organ Donar Night" at AutoZone Park back in 2011. So they were being insane for a good cause.
5. Organ Jerseys – Memphis Redbirds
My mom dressed me up as a pumpkin on my first halloween. My costume looked exactly like this, minus the "Rock Cats" of course.
4. Jack-O-Lantern Jerseys – New Britain Rock Cats
We told you they were going to do it, and they did it. God bless those Toledo Mud Hens.
3. Ghostbuster Jerseys – Toledo Mud Hens
Sweet. Mother. Of God. These are...breathtaking.
2. Chihuahua Face Jerseys – El Paso Chihuahuas
And finally, to wrap things up, we have the selfie jersey made up of fan-submitted selfies. It comes to us courtesy of the Kalamazoo Growlers of the Northwoods summer wood bat collegiate league. Technically they are not a minor league baseball team, but they most definitely are a minor league baseball team in spirit.
1. Selfie Jersey – Kalamazoo Growlers
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