With Major League Baseball’s recent release of the 2021 All-Star Game jerseys, a questionable decision at that, people are now taking jabs at an era that MLB has made sure to forget: the Turn Ahead The Clock jerseys of the late 1990s.
As an avid defender of these jerseys, I am not having any of it, and I am here to tell you why the Turn Ahead The Clock jerseys have left a similar taste in people’s mouths to the Sega Dreamcast: truly ahead of its time, and severely misunderstood.
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What were the Turn Ahead The Clock jerseys?
Just a quick background on this promotion: it started as a one-game thing, a promotion held in 1998 for a game between the Seattle Mariners and Kansas City Royals at the Kingdome, the former home of the Mariners.
The jerseys were truly from the future, featuring large logos and essentially a sleeveless top. Names and numbers were stylized and players were encouraged to let loose, playing with jerseys untucked and hats worn backward.
Of course, who better to rock this look than “The Kid” himself, Ken Griffey Jr., so it looked both weird and cool as implemented.
Fast forward to 1999, and MLB decided to do this with 20+ teams in the league, creating some truly wild designs and “out of this world” team re-brandings, like the Mercury Mets.
The Tampa Bay Rays, who had just entered the league at the start of the 1998 season, participated in the promotion and had one of the best jersey designs of any team that participated.
I mean just look at these uniforms (seen in the video below.) They are incredible and I need my hands on one.
My opinion, however, is very much in the minority because these jerseys have been considered amongst the worst jersey promotions in baseball history, and were by many accounts, a cash grab from MLB.
To be honest, some of these Turn Ahead The Clock designs were atrocious, but there were some absolute gems sprinkled in, like the Rays, Colorado Rockies, and the aforementioned Mariners.
I am here to give credit where credit is due because MLB did something they knew probably wasn’t going to be a smash hit, and still did it.
Turn Ahead The Clock > 2021 All-Star Game jerseys
They tried something different, unique, and new. It is still 1000x better than what they did with the All-Star Game jerseys this season.
We’re taking a page out of the book from our friends over at RoxPile, but considering the games were set in the futuristic year of 2021, bring them back this season!
MLB absolutely failed with the 2019 Players’ Weekend jerseys, so why not bring back these designs in a new, updated way for 2021 Players’ Weekend???
The Mariners had a Turn Ahead The Clock tribute night a few seasons ago, and it was absolutely incredible. The team they played that night? The Kansas City Royals.
It’s nice when things come full circle. Anyways, with the growing animosity that baseball fans have toward MLB, it’s time to do something that will promote the game better. Honestly, the Turn Ahead The Clock jerseys would be a really cool way to do that. And if done right, will be a big success.