As I read an article by Rob Neyer of FOX Sports a few days ago, I became furious. It was a very good article, as it discussed the first reason as to why we will miss Commissioner Bud Selig. That was because it appears that baseball may be leaning toward putting advertisements on jerseys.
Here's a direct quote from Neyer's article from Giants CEO Larry Baer on these advertisements:
This is new revenue. And I think there’s always ownership support for new revenue, right? And, I think that also, quite frankly, we are, owners, very cognizant of ticket prices. And, if this is a way to — and I’m not saying it’s going to be mutually exclusive. I’m not saying, "Wow, if there’s advertising on uniforms, then ticket prices are going to be frozen for the next five years." I’m not giving to say that. But I do believe that, um, that could be potentially a better alternative. We would support, the Giants would support, this is a better alternative than continuous ticket price increases across the board to fund operations . . . I don’t know who would be on the sleeve, or, whatever. Something tells me it will be a sleeve. It would start with a sleeve.
Yes, advertisements on jerseys would continue to make baseball profitable, but they would absolutely disgust me. It is completely inappropriate for America's Pastime to earn an extra buck with some advertisements on the sleeves of jerseys.
It's bad that corporate sponsors already have taken over stadium names. The Braves are moving out of Turner Field for a completely new stadium by the name of SunTrust Park. The best stadium names are the ones that don't have a corporate sponsor, even if the name is something as simple of "Nationals Park." But that is another issue for another time.
As for the advertisements on jerseys, how would Yankees fans feel if their traditional blue pinstripes had a sleeve advertising a product or a company? Baseball is often criticized for "living in the past" and trying to remain true to itself. But one thing that needs to remain true to itself are their jerseys, hands down. And once advertisements are put on jerseys, that opens a whole new can of worms on where else they could put advertisements.
I hope that you agree with me in that advertisements are to be nowhere near the jersey. I'm fine with advertisements on the outfield walls, okay with stadium names as a company name, but one thing that should never, ever happen is jerseys promoting something besides the team name.