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Nationals 9, Cubs 3: You can’t tell the players even WITH a scorecard

The Cubs got blown out by the Nats, and MLB whiffed big-time on Players Weekend uniforms

Jon Durr-USA TODAY Sports

Just a few thoughts about the Cubs’ 9-3 loss to the Nationals Friday afternoon, and then on to the bigger topic of the day, the awful Players Weekend uniforms worn by both teams.

  • Anibal Sanchez is a good pitcher. He’s never been quite this good, though, holding the Cubs to one hit and two walks over 8⅓ innings.
  • Nicholas Castellanos prevented Sanchez from going into the ninth inning with a no-hitter with his fourth-inning single to left.
  • Jon Lester... man, I don’t know what’s wrong with Jon. He clearly didn’t have it even from the first inning, when Adam Eaton homered off him. He managed to hold the game togethre reasonably well until the fourth, when the Nats unleashed five hits and two runs, and then after another two hits in the fifth Joe mercifully took him out. Of 11 batters Jon faced in the fourth and fifth, eight reached base. It might not be a bad idea, with next week’s off day, to skip Jon’s next turn in the rotation.
  • The Cubs did hit a few baseballs that might have been out of the park on another day. Kyle Schwarber hit a couple of them and Castellanos had one. But when the wind’s blowing in as it was Friday (16 miles per hour), maybe launch angle needs to go out the window, no? Eaton’s homer was a line drive:

The Cubs looked like they might get one-hit for the second time in the last four weeks, until a silly rally that included a walk, an error scoring the Cubs’ first run [VIDEO]...

That one brought loud applause, somewhat sarcastic in my view, and then a double by Castellanos scoring another run [VIDEO].

One more run, this time on an Anthony Rizzo bouncer up the middle [VIDEO].

The final score was closer than the game really was; at least that ninth inning provided some entertainment.

You might have noticed a lack of color in the photo at the top of this recap and in the videos. That’s because... there was a lack of color in the Players Weekend uniforms worn by both teams, and a lack of readability of names and numbers.

I mean, seriously, MLB, what were you thinking?

Wait, I think I know. Someone in MLB marketing watched a NBA game and saw all the cool shoes worn by the players and said, “Let’s let the baseball players go crazy with shoes!” And... well, MLB players wear long pants, some down to the tops of their shoes, and you couldn’t... really... see... the... shoes. Or anything else that was supposed to personalize these uniforms.

That caused scenes like this:

And this:

Seriously, MLB, no one thought of this?

The umpires do have alternate light-blue shirts. Might have been a no-brainer to have the umpires wear those.

There was general mocking of these uniforms all over Twitter:

And then, some pretty good advice:

On previous Players Weekends, teams have worn colors similar to their usual uniforms, but with a bit of color accent added. Last year’s Cubs uniform:

Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports

Now those look nice — I see fans wearing replicas of these all the time. I can’t imagine anyone buying a replica of this year’s Cubs uniform, or a fan any of the teams wearing black buying that club’s replica. This is how bad it was, MLB:

He’s right. It’s not too late for MLB to send out a notice to all teams to just go back to their usual uniforms in time for tomorrow’s games. It probably can’t happen, as the visiting teams likely don’t have their regular garb along on their trips. Still, it would be a good idea. In any case, I will resume using color in tomorrow’s preview and recap.

Tomorrow, we hope, will be the time the Cubs will even up this series. Jose Quintana will start for the Cubs and Joe Ross will go for the Nats. Game time is again 1:20 p.m. CT and TV coverage will be via NBC Sports Chicago, with a national broadcast on MLB Network (outside the Cubs and Nationals market territories).


The 2019 Players Weekend uniforms...

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