Brown: 19th-century uniform database updates

From SABR member Craig Brown at Threads of our Game on May 27, 2017:

There was never a more mixed-up year in baseball than 1890. That year, the new Players’ League (officially the Players’ National League) began operation with franchises in top National League cities. Brotherhood teams signed the NL’s best players, had the support of the press, and scheduled games that interfered with NL games. To further supplant the evil empire, PL teams assumed the colors and identities of established NL franchises. That’s where Threads comes in.

Here’s a quick look at how the eight Players’ League teams borrowed from their NL rivals:

1890 Boston
The PL team copied the Boston NL team colors exactly, including use of the sacred red stockings, first worn in Boston in 1871. In 1890, both teams were dressed nearly identical, with only a few subtle exceptions: look closely at the shirt laces and the arch of the lettering.
See the uniforms

1890 Brooklyn
The PL team chose not to copy the Brooklyn NL team—instead, John Ward and company forged a new identity using light blue. The NL team, newly transferred from the AA and fresh off a championship, retained their traditional red.
See the uniforms

1890 Buffalo
There was no NL team to steal from in Buffalo, so the PL team followed the black & white uniform craze first started by the NL champion New York Giants of 1888. (Red and blue were suddenly passé). But, that’s where the New York comparison ended however, as Buffalo won only 36 games in 1890.
See the uniform

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Originally published: May 30, 2017. Last Updated: May 30, 2017.