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Grading the new spring training hats

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There aren’t a lot of surprises. Just some good hats and bad ones.

Last year, we took a look at some of the new spring training hats around baseball. Some were solid. Some were lousy. The Diamondbacks put a dumb logo on their hat ...

... and it must have sold so well that they’re bringing it back this year. Shows what I know.

There are seven teams that decided to try some new spring hats, though, including two of the teams with bad hats last year. How did they do?

Yankees

The Yankees are introducing two new hats. One of them is okay. One of them is not.

People who have a 5 percent chance of looking normal in this hat:

  1. El-P
  2. It’s a retro hat from an alternate universe where the ‘90s lasted two decades and people wear hats with their pajamas. No one will buy this hat.

Score: 3/10

Better. The Yankees’ grey is an underrated grey, and they use it sparingly, which adds to the appeal.

Score: 7/10

Rays

It was tough to be an expansion team from the last couple decades, considering all the good colors were mostly spoken for. That’s why you saw teams like the Rockies and Diamondbacks trying to make purple happen with limited success. The Marlins claimed teal, and only the Mariners got jealous. If you’ve ever tried to create a fictional baseball team in a video game, you’ll know the pain of a ‘90s expansion team.

That written, the Rays are doing pretty well.

The logo is still a Batman sound effect from the ‘60s.

But the colors are solid. Not only is that hard to do for a team stuck with ‘90s colors, but the Rays did it with a front-panel hat, too. That’s exceptionally tricky, and they pulled it off.

Score: 7/10

Braves

The tomahawk logo still looks like someone took a clipart tomahawk and spent five seconds with it in Photoshop.

And what you’re left with is a hat featuring a) an interstate sign, and b) a gigantic diagonal tomahawk. Even before you get to the all-navy coloring, it’s hideous.

Score: 2/10

Cubs

ANGRY BEAR CUB.

GRRRRRRR GRRRRRRRRRRRRR

Except, hold on, bear cubs are total weenies.

I could totally take a bear cub, and I’m scared of moths. Look, someone over a century ago named your team after an adorable, furry baby. Embrace it or get out of the way.

Score: 5/10

Indians

Oh, it’s an ugly hat, alright.

Dreadful use of the front-panel coloring. This specific navy and red is a combination that belongs on the Speedo of someone hitting on your significant other in the hotel pool. And it’s topped off with a boring block letter, hearkening back to a time when people were very proud that they invented a third letter. Do not give your Social Security Number to this hat; this is a very bad hat.

But it’s not Chief Wahoo, so we’re grading on a curve.

Score: 8/10

Mets

Last year’s hat was a Mr. Met abomination that had too many colors. This is a big step up.

Classic Mets. You have the blue for the departed Brooklyn Dodgers. You have the orange for the departed New York Giants. And just a smidgen of white to tie it all together. Well done.

Score: 8/10

Mariners

Last year’s hat was one of my least favorites, too, a combination of one of the worst Mariners logos and an unfortunate doubling down on the teal.

They got it half-right.

It’s a better use for the teal, which is like a more judicious use of cilantro: still bad, but at least it makes a little sense. I’m all for that logo with some classic colors:

But if I have to choose between a hat with a) last year’s shuriken-compass with a blue-gold color scheme or b) this year’s trident with teal, I’ll go with the trident every time. I especially like how they went back to the late ‘70s for the trident design, which I don’t remember them doing.

Score: 7/10

All in all, not a bad batch of spring hats! Better than last year, at least. And while I make fun of the hats because my parents didn’t pay attention to me, it should be noted that the Giants’ hat is just their regular hat with a outline-ier logo.

1/10. At least these other teams are out here shooting shots. Maybe put a trident on the hat next year.