Review of Routine Baseball: The Filthiest Baseball Threads in the Game
Tuesday December 13, 2011
MLB reports – Jonathan Hacohen: I will start off this review by admitting some very key points. While I write and review the game of baseball and everything surrounding it, I am also a fan of the game. You have to love this sport to be able to talk and write about it every day. I have no problem admitting it: I love baseball. But when you love the game to this degree, you start to lead a very baseball-centric life. Baseball apps on the smartphone. Baseball birthday cake. Libraries filled with baseball DVDs and books. Are you sensing a baseball theme in my life? That is the reality of a true blooded, 110% focused baseball fan. So what do baseball fans need more than anything else? Good baseball gear. From shirts to hats and everything in between, baseball fans require good apparel. That is where I got introduced to Routine Baseball.
Part of the mandate of MLB reports is to uncover everything and anything in the world that is baseball. That was the purpose behind Technology Field, a section of our website devoted exclusively to technological advancements and products related to the game of baseball. When I first came across Routine Baseball, my immediate thought was to include its brand of baseball wear in Technology Field. We all know and love official MLB clothing that we find at the ballpark. Majestic jerseys and shirts, New Era Caps…those are brands and clothing items we know very well. I will admit that when I first arrive at a new ballpark, I made a direct line to their main souvenir shop to try on baseball gear. Will they have retro Jersey Ts? How much are the jackets? These are questions that are always answered before I even make it to my seat. But we can only wear team and player gear so often. That is where Routine Baseball is unique and part of a very fresh niche market. Hip and fun baseball clothing without the team logos and names. An advancement in the art of baseball fandom. Thus I had no choice but to see what the fuss was about it. Was I ready for filthy baseball threads? The answer was a definite yes.
The first point I noticed wearing and looking at the sample shirts that were sent over to the MLB reports office was the quality. I love the feel and construction of these shirts. Routine Baseball emphasized to me in our discussion that their products is 100% American Made. Taking a look at each product, there it is right on the label: “100% Filthy American Quality.” I am still of an age where filthy meant dirty and undesirable. But to the hipsters and urbanites, filthy is apparently good. Filthy means cool. I have owned hundreds of baseball tops during my lifetime. Routine Baseball definitely got it right in how they built a baseball shirt. You know that feeling when you buy a stiff top from a store that needs to be worn and washed dozens of times before it feels soft and fun to wear? Not with Routine Baseball clothing. These clothes are ready to wear right out of the wrapper. The best way I can describe them as the type of shirts that you keep at the top of your drawer and just grab and wear without ever thinking. They are soft, the right thickness and fit like a glove. I am very picky about clothing, especially baseball gear. Routine Baseball put a great detail of thought and work in the construction of these bad boys. Surely it costs a great deal more in labor by having their products produced in America. But it is definitely worth it. These are not shirts that you will wear twice and find holes. These are shirts that will be worn for a decade…if not more. You baseball rats know what I mean.
So the first test was passed. Routine baseball shirts live up to my quality standards. Now for the designs. Routine Baseball is not pretending to be traditional or old-fashioned. The company is going for the urban modern look. I will admit that not all their designs are for everyone. But that is the beauty of having many different designs and logos. There should be something for everyone. The first shirt that I opened was actually my favorite of the bunch. “Paint the Corners” was the printed image in black on a grey top. Love it. Absolutely love it. The shirt had a baseball theme that hit home for me. I really enjoyed the slogan and how it was designed on the shirt. The logo was well designed to be smart, but not too complicated. I similarly enjoyed the RBI shirt – “Routine Baseball Inc”. A nice use of colors, yellow and white on a black top. The logo was clean and hip, with a clear baseball message across. The busiest logo was “Triple Crown Status”, with a lion wearing a crown and a baseball in his mouth. An interesting shirt, as it would not be my first choice of shirts in a store. But the blue print on the grey shirt gave it a nice look. I actually found the shirt worked very well with a pair of jeans and a blazer. I don’t find the same versatility in general baseball logo gear. That is yet another factor that makes Routine Baseball gear stand out from the crowd.
As a young fresh company, Routine Baseball hasn’t even hit their stride yet. The product lines include t-shirts, hoodies and hats, for both men and women. I expect in the coming months and years we will see a full-out explosion of filthy gear from Routine Baseball. Jerseys. Shades. Jackets. Shoes. The sky is the limit. At the end of the day, everyone only has a certain amount of money to spend on products and services. For the best bang for the buck, it is always wise to buy a well made good. They made cost a little more, but they will last far long than an inferior one. Routine Baseball gear is well worth the purchase. I can sum them up by saying their shirts are comfortable, fit well and look good. Wearing baseball gear is all about displaying the love of the game and standing out from the crowd. We are not talking about 1970s Pirates and 1980s Padres clothes (although some actually that type of look). Routine Baseball gear is clothing that you can wear almost anywhere and in any setting without being outcast as the novelty baseball fan. It is cool to love baseball again. Filthy baseball gear is the newest “must have” gear in the world of baseball fandom. With the holiday season around the corner, http://routinebaseball.com is a good stop location to get some cool threads to the baseball fan in your world. From one baseball fan to another: Filthy is the new cool.
Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports: You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)
Please e-mail us at: MLBreports@gmail.com with any questions and feedback. You can follow us on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook . To subscribe to our website and have the daily Reports sent directly to your inbox , click here and follow the link at the top of our homepage.
A big thank you to Mike and Tony over at Routine Baseball for providing us with samples of their products for this review. They are very hands-on enterpreneurs and take full advantage of social media to be reached and heard. You can start off by checking their website: http://routinebaseball.com. They can be reached on Twitter (@RoutineBaseball) and Facebook.
Now for the promo stuff. A little something from the fine people at Routine Baseball.
Here is the story of how they came to exist:
Routine Baseball was started by two friends Tony Knapton and Michael DeGrave, Tony the CEO and Michael the CFO. It all started in 2009 when we were in college and started talking about baseball one night sitting around having a few beers. Tony walked out with his old raggedy state baseball t-shirt he had received many years earlier while participating in a state tournament, and I told him that it looked like an old bar rag (due to the stains and little holes on it) and that he should retire the baseball tee and throw on a new one to go out. Tony upset by the comment and most of all from the point of retiring his last piece of memory from that great state team, decided to retire the t-shirt. The idea was created later that night to bring baseball lovers such as ourselves a clothing line that would evolve baseball and fashion into one entity. With the knowledge each of us had of the game, and what we went to school for (Tony a Graphic Designer, and Michael Business) we knew this dream could eventually turn into a reality. This is how the idea of Routine Baseball was developed. However, a couple of beers earlier turned into many more and this grand idea turned quickly into a faded after thought and the idea was lost… along with a few brain cells.
Fast forward to Fall of 2011 and this is where the fun starts. One random night Tony had a couple of beers while watching a baseball game and out of no where the idea popped into his head and he then half drunkenly designed the logo (has been completely unchanged since) and 2 of the shirts THAT night and the call was made to Mikey that very next day. Then came the fun process of bank, lawyer, and ball player meetings and a month later (yes only a month) we launched Routine Baseball on November 1, 2011. Starting out with just 6 t-shirt designs at launch, in just one month we have added 16 more designs to our fall line, including a Women’s line and hats on the way as well. We have been in contact with many Minor and Major league players, and hopefully eventually we will become a household name. We have only scratched the surface of the baseball fashion industry and what we want to accomplish as a business, and we feel that Routine Baseball will take off-the-field baseball apparel to the next level. We try to combine our passions for baseball (obviously), music, art, and current fashion trends and blend them all together in our designs. Also, being a couple 20-something year old’s really plays to our advantage in how we interact with our followers and how we relate to them. They really enjoy the fact that we don’t come off as a strict-by-the-book company where certain topics might be off-limits. So jump on board with Routine Baseball because we are expecting a ride of a lifetime, and we want you to join in on the fun.