SportsNation Blog Archives Toronto Blue Jays
Is PED use no big deal?
PED use is considered a crime against baseball. It's now punished as such, with players suspended major chunks of time if they're caught. And yet, if the cases of Melky Cabrera and Nelson Cruz are any indication, it doesn't matter all that much to fans. Cabrera, a Blue Jays outfielder who was suspended 50 games in 2012 for testing positive for high levels of testosterone, currently is the third-leading American League outfield vote-getter for the 2014 All-Star Game. Nelson Cruz, an Oriole who served a 50-game Biogenesis-related suspension in 2013, is ahead of even David Ortiz at the DH position. What say you?
As fans of the comedy series "Portlandia'' know, the secret to merchandising is to slap a bird on it. And apparently, the same holds true for baseball uniforms.
After four rounds of voting, tigers, fish, elephants, snakes, astronauts, seafarers, gun-toting officers of the law, buccaneers, heavenly bodies, Native Americans, pinstriped Northeners and even two pairs of colored socks are all gone. Our Battle of the Uniforms will finish with the Battle of the Birds.
The No. 1-seeded Cardinals, who have as iconic a St. Louis design as the Gateway Arch or a bottle of Bud, beat their longtime rival, the Chicago Cubs, in the final round of the National League voting, 54 percent to 46 percent.
Meanwhile, the Cinderella team of the American League bracket upset yet another higher-seeded team in the AL championship. By a margin of 3,103 votes, fans declared they prefer the orange and black Baltimore Orioles over the traditional uniform worn by everyone from Babe Ruth to Derek Jeter. Or perhaps fans just hate the Yankees' pinstripes.
Whatever the reason, it's the Cardinals versus the Orioles for the title of baseball's best uniform. Bird watchers should get their binoculars out for this ornithological fight, though Toronto fans are probably wondering why their colorful Jay was found wanting.
This is serious business, so to make sure that everyone gets a chance to take a long, careful look at these two uniforms and judge the colors, logos, caps and overall style of both home and road uniforms, our polls will be open throughout the weekend. You can cast your vote up until noon ET Monday, when we will declare the winner.
So good luck Cardinals and Orioles. May the better uniform win. And remember voters, this isn't about who actually wears the uniforms but the uniforms themselves.
Note: Championship-round poll closes at noon ET Monday.
Mobile users: To vote, click here.
Battle of the Uniforms: Championship
(1) Cardinals vs. (13) Orioles
Audubon would have loved this championship.
Battle of the Uniforms seedings
We've now reached the final four. Or, if you prefer, we've reached the league championship series.
Either way, the Battle of the Uniforms is now in the home stretch (or as a malapropism-prone boss of mine once liked to say, "the home run stretch"). In the American League, the Orioles are facing the Yankees, and the National League crown has come down to the Cubs and the Cards.
The seedings, done by Jim Caple and myself, have largely proven accurate. Three of the final four teams were seeded either No. 1 or No. 2 in their respective leagues, which means our uni assessments are largely in line with yours. The lone outlier is Baltimore, which was seeded 13th but upset the top-seeded Tigers.
I'll admit it: I was kind of hoping for a rogue uniform design to make it to the semifinals, just to make things interesting. The Diamondbacks, say, or the Marlins. And I was seriously rooting for the A's to upset the Yanks (they came thisclose). In the end, though, the classic designs have won. And that makes sense: The classics are classic for a reason.
The cool thing about the Battle of the Unis is that several on-field rivalries have been echoed at the ballot box. Wednesday we had the Yankees just eking out a victory of the Red Sox (whose fans were no doubt chanting "Yankees suck!" as they clicked on the Sox icon), and now we have a classic National League matchup, as Chicago and St. Louis face off for Senior Circuit supremacy.
So who's going to advance to the uniform World Series? You folks get to decide that. But I'll say this: I'm voting for the teams with the feathers.
LCS-round polls close at 9 a.m. ET Friday, and the championship round begins shortly thereafter.
Mobile users: To vote, click here.
Jim Caple bracket: American League
(2) Yankees vs. (13) Orioles
The Birds have upset three teams so far, but can they knock off the Pinstripers for the AL title?
Paul Lukas bracket: National League
(1) Cardinals vs. (2) Cubs
These two teams have always had an on-field rivalry. Good to see that's extending to their uniforms.