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MLB’s Uniform Controversy: Transparency in All the Wrong Ways

Major League Baseball’s latest fashion endeavor has hit a snag, one that’s a bit more transparent than they would have liked. The new uniforms, a collaboration between Nike and Fanatics, have stirred a storm of controversy not just for their design but for their material—particularly the pants. As players gear up for spring training, a glaring issue has come to light: the pants are nearly see-through.

The switch to a thinner fabric has led to unintended reveals, with players’ compression shorts and even the outlines of more private anatomy becoming visible. This wardrobe malfunction has not only caught the eye of fans but has also drawn criticism from players, with the league’s superstar Shohei Ohtani becoming an unwitting model for the flawed design.

Tony Clark, MLBPA chief, has voiced the “universal” concerns of players, noting the ongoing dialogue with the league over the pants’ transparency and the logistical nightmare of outfitting teams properly. Amidst the uproar, MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred has stood by the new uniforms, touting them as “performance wear” that will grow on players and fans alike.

Yet, as the baseball community waits for a solution, one sentiment has emerged unscathed: according to Caroline Means, spouses of the players might be the only ones seeing a silver lining in this fashion faux pas. As the debate over the new uniforms continues, MLB finds itself in a tight spot, trying to balance innovation with tradition and functionality with fashion.

Photo Credit: David Lee /

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