Friday, October 12, 2018

Seeing Blue in Pro Sports

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This postseason will mark the fourth straight year that all four competitors in the League Championship Series feature some shade of blue predominantly in their uniforms. In the American League, you have to go back 13 years to the 2005 matchup between the White Sox and the Angels to find the first series that didn’t include blue uniforms. The National League is a bit more recent, with the 2014 matchup paring the black-and-orange Giants against the red Cardinals. Why is blue such a popular color in baseball and sports for that matter?

Considering the generations of history some of these baseball teams have, it’s easy to see why blue is included in their uniforms. Blue fabric dyes were easier to naturally make from plants before synthetics came along, making blue much cheaper than brighter, vibrant colors. A darker uniform color was also less likely to show dirt and wear, and baseball teams at the turn of the century weren’t tossing their uniforms in the wash between every game.

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On the psychological side of things, blue is a calming color that is associated with tradition, stability and uniformity. Considering its natural presence in much of daily life, it’s also one of the most viewed colors in the natural light spectrum. Sports teams want to tap into that color psychology, giving their fans something that’s visually pleasing and comforting to look at on television or from the stands.

Statistically speaking, blue-clad teams have performed well over the course of baseball history, and sports history for that matter. Here are some of the most successful teams in North American sports, all of whom happen to wear a shade of blue:

  • New York Yankees - 27 World Series championships in 40 appearances
  • Los Angeles/Brooklyn Dodgers - 6 World Series championships in 19 appearances
  • Toronto Maple Leafs - 13 Stanley Cup championships in 21 appearances
  • Golden State Warriors - 6 NBA Finals championships in 10 appearances
  • Chicago Bears - 9 NFL championships/Super Bowl championships in 19 appearances
  • New England Patriots - 5 Super Bowl championships in 10 appearances
  • Los Angeles Galaxy - 5 MLS Cup championships in 9 appearances
  • Minnesota Lynx - 4 WNBA Finals championships in 6 appearances

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You get the picture, blue teams just win! While this baseball season won’t produce a champion that doesn’t don blue, the tournament and its history certainly speaks to the success and popularity of the color. What do you think of teams wearing blue? Is it a tired color that needs to be replaced? Let us know in the comments below, and enjoy the last three series of the baseball season!

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

MLB Playoff Predictions Based on Color Schemes

After a grueling up-and-down season that took one day longer than scheduled to determine seeding, the MLB playoffs are finally upon us. This year brings a lot of familiar faces to the postseason tournament, with a few new entries to break up the monotony and provide some different colors to look at during the game. For that reason, it seems only natural to give our predictions for the playoffs based on team colors!

Yankees/Athletics vs. Red Sox
Green and yellow is one of the most underrated color combinations in sports, and we kind of appreciate that so few teams use it. It doesn’t overstay its welcome and has great balance. On the flip side, the Yankees just LOOK like they know how to wear navy blue more than anyone else. It’s a toss-up, but we’ll take Oakland to advance and face Boston. 

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In the Red Sox, we have another team that just LOOKs like they know how to wear navy blue and red more than anyone else. That’s saying a lot, considering how overused the color combination is in baseball. We’ll keep riding the green wave and go with Oakland all the way to the ALCS!

Astros vs. Indians
Get ready for a visual snoozer, unless Houston busts out their orange tops. Orange is a great color, and the Astros do a good job of utilizing it in their uniforms without overdoing it. Houston tops the Indians in the battle of navy blue.

The Astros know their way around orange, but the Athletics have been a color combination mainstay for decades and decades. No one has come close to replicating the simplicity of their colors and uniform, despite their best efforts. It’ll be close, but you just can’t beat Oakland’s color combo.

Cubs/Rockies vs. Brewers
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In one corner, we have tried-and-true red and royal blue, in the other corner, we have the remnants of the 1990s color fad. Kudos to Colorado for not bending to pressure and changing up their color scheme like the Marlins, Rays and Diamondbacks all did, but you can’t top tradition. Cubs pass the test in this one.

We’re firm believers that the Brew Crew should’ve never moved away from royal blue and yellow back in their golden years. The colors were balanced, that glove logo was a thing of design beauty and the league just doesn’t need more navy blue. That being said, the Brewers look has grown on us. Milwaukee squirms by with a close color scheme victory.

Braves vs. Dodgers
Like the Red Sox, the Braves just LOOK like they know how to wear navy blue and red. The Dodgers also know their way around royal blue. This will be a visually-pleasing matchup, and we expect it to be hard-fought on the field. The Braves’ colors win, but just barely.

Navy blue and gold against navy blue and red! If you see the Brewers enough, the nice touches of gold and script letters begin to grow on you. Respect to the Braves for (mostly) not messing with their uniforms over the years, but it’s time for the navy blue and gold of the Brewers to take the win.

World Series
In a tough battle of modern navy blue and gold design and traditional green and yellow elements, it’s difficult to know which one to pick. The yellow just pops on Oakland’s uniforms, and the gold of Milwaukee’s tends to get lost in the background, despite the nice design. Oakland runs away with it.

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As always, we’re likely to be wrong on our picks, but seeing as how we know a thing or two about team colors and fan fashion, we think we’ll be right more often than we’re wrong. Who do you think will walk away with the World Series title? Which matchups are you hoping to see in the various series? Let us know in the comments below!

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Best Winning & Worst Losing Streaks in Sports

This past week, the Cleveland Browns won their first regular season football game in nearly two years, breaking a winless streak that dated back to December 2016 in the season finale against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Snapping that streak had us curious about some of the best and worst streaks in American professional sports. We’ve left out MLS due to draws being commonplace, but here are a couple streaks to cheer (or cry) about.

Best NFL Winning Streak
Who else but the New England Patriots could hold the title of longest winning streak in the NFL? Starting in 2003, the Pats rattled off 21 straight wins before falling to the Pittsburgh Steelers the following season, more than a year after losing their last game. We don’t imagine their fans were too upset about it.

Worst NFL Losing Streak
At the height of World War II, the listless Chicago Cardinals lost a whopping 29 straight games before finally beating the Chicago Bears in 1945 to break their losing streak. Second place goes to the expansion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who lost 26 straight games before recording two wins in their second season in existence.

Best MLB Winning Streak
We almost had a new league record set for consecutive wins last season by the Cleveland Indians, who won a mind-boggling 22 victories before losing towards the end of the season. The all-time record stands with the 1916 New York Giants, who achieved 26 wins with a few unofficial ties thrown in.

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Worst MLB Losing Streak 
Who remembers the mighty Colonels of Louisville? You have to go all the way back to 1889 to find MLB’s worst losing streak, which tallies in at 26 games. The Colonels only won 27 of a possible 138 games that year, and finally broke their streak by beating the St. Louis Browns. The closest we’ve seen in modern baseball was the 2005 Kansas City Royals, who lost 19 straight games. Ten years later, they washed that bad taste from their mouths with a World Series championship.

Best NBA Winning Streak
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The 1971 Los Angeles Lakers ran away with 33 straight victories for a dominating final season record of 69-13. They haven’t been bested, but teams have come close. The Golden State Warriors ended their first championship season run earlier this decade with four regular season victories and followed it up the next year with 24 straight for 28 total wins for the best overall season record at 73-9 in the 2015-2016 season.

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Worst NBA Losing Streak 
You only need look back the 2014 and 2015 seasons to find the NBA record for longest losing streak. The Philadelphia 76ers finished the 2014 campaign and opened the 2015 campaign with a combined 28 losses. They bested their own single season record of 26 games, which happened in 2013 and tied the 2010 Cavaliers for the then-longest streak. Sixers fans have been able to “trust the system” as the team is now a playoff contender.

Best NHL Winning Streak
The 1993 Pittsburgh Penguins were a team to behold, even after coming off back-to-back Stanley Cup championships. The team won a staggering 17 straight games before ending their streak with a 6-6 tie to the New Jersey Devils. The 2017 Columbus Blue Jackets nearly bested them, winning 16 in a row before a loss in a shootout.

Worst NHL Losing Streak 
Just one year before the Penguins’ amazing run, the 1992 San Jose Sharks matched their win total with a 17-game losing streak, a mark which was initially set by the 1974 Washington Capitals.

Best WNBA Winning Streak
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The Lisa Leslie-led Los Angeles Sparks (say that five times fast) of 2001 dominated their competition for 18 straight games on their way to a complete dismantling of the playoff field and a second straight league championship.

Worst WNBA Losing Streak
The 2011 Tulsa Shock lost 20 straight times before their fortunes turned with a win. The team would battle through four more tough seasons before finding their footing, making the playoffs and surprisingly relocating to Dallas to become the Wings.

With the Browns finally winning a game, another shot at the record books has ended. Here’s hoping we see some more great teams in the coming seasons (and fewer bad teams). Do you think any NFL team has a shot at going undefeated this year and potentially challenging the Patriots record? Will we see another team go 0-16 this year? Sound off in the comments below.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Game Bibs Fan Focus - Part 6

We're back with another addition of our Fan Focus blog series! Today, we're talking with Brittany, a student at UC-Berkeley.

When did you buy your first pair of Game Bibs?
I bought my first pair in the fall of 2017, my first semester at U.C. Berkeley and my first full season of Pac-12 football in person.

Do you have any game day traditions (tailgating, specific foods, etc.)?
My game day traditions include Artichoke’s Pizza and having a few drinks with some good friends.

What song gets you pumped up on game day?
A few of my favorite songs that get me pumped up on game days are "Knuck if You Buck", "Blow the Whistle", and "Return of the Mack."

Name three game day necessities you always have with you.
Three game day necessities include: my Cal earrings, Burt’s Bees, and, of course, my Game Bibs.

What's your favorite game day memory with your game bibs?
My favorite game day memory with my Game Bibs has to be the last home game of the 2017 season when I proudly took down a fishbowl at Kips.

If you could wear any article of clothing in the same colored stripes as your Game Bibs, what would it be?
One article of clothing I’d love to wear with the same colored stripes as my Game Bibs would be an overall skirt.

Tell us about a favorite sports moment you've gotten to experience.
My favorite sports moment I’ve got to experience was my very first Raiders game in the fall of 2017. Having been an Oakland Raiders fan for as long as I can remember, my very first game in person will always be something to remember.

Do you have any big plans for this year's football season?
Since it’s my final year at Cal, I plan on making the most of this football season by making every game as memorable as possible. I’m really looking forward to the Cal v. Stanford game. I’m also attending a few Oakland Raiders games this season which I’m really stoked for! The atmosphere at Raiders games is unmatched!

What is your favorite sports movie?
My favorite sports movie has to be Remember the Titans, but Caddyshack and the Sandlot are right there as well.

Who is your favorite athlete?
I would say my favorite athlete is Carli Lloyd.

Thanks for taking the time to chat with us, Brittany! Best of luck to your Golden Bears this season, and have a great last year at Cal! Do you want to be featured in our Fan Focus blog series? Just drop us a line on social media and we'll be in touch!
Thursday, September 6, 2018

Game Bibs’ 2018 NFL Predictions

We’re not sure even Nostradamus could have predicted the way the 2017 NFL season panned out. A surprise Philadelphia squad surged their way into the playoffs and won the championship despite losing their young, exciting franchise quarterback to a knee injury. Meanwhile, the Vikings turned heads with a backup quarterback of their own, which gave us an offseason quarterback carousel that’s only just settling. Who can forget the Jacksonville Jaguars and their stout defense that nearly made it to the Super Bowl? Put on your prediction caps as we give our picks for top teams in 2018.

Can we safely pick the Eagles to come out on top in the East? The Giants clarified their contract issues with Odell Beckham, Washington picked up a proven leader in Alex Smith, and the Cowboys are young and hungry. If Carson Wentz makes a healthy comeback around the quarter mark of the season, however, we think you can put your bets on the Eagles.

If Aaron Rodgers is healthy, you can never count out Green Bay. The team may have lost Jordy Nelson from their receiving corps, but they stabilized their tight end group with Jimmy Graham and other solid veterans. Khalil Mack running wild in Chicago won’t mean an easy road for the likes of Rodgers, Matt Stafford, or Kirk Cousins, however. We see the Packers eeking out a few close victories over Detroit and Minnesota to take the division.

Last season feels like a bit of a rarity with three teams all finishing near the top of the table. Unless Drew Brees finds Tom Brady’s Fountain of Youth, this is likely Atlanta’s division to lose. We’re betting the Falcons come out on top after a few tough divisional games.

Los Angeles signed Aaron Donald to a massive contract, solidifying their defensive line for the near future. We’re picking the Rams to prove last year wasn’t a fluke.

All of their competitors made some nice draft picks and signings, but this division is, yet again, owned by the Patriots and their ageless quarterback. It won’t be close in 2018.

The ongoing Le’Veon Bell talks in Pittsburgh have us wondering what the Steelers can patch together if their star running back holds out well into the season. There’s also the question of whether or not his team wants him there. Maybe they only win 11 games this year, but Baltimore wins 11 as well. It could come down to a late-season showdown between the two teams, with the Ravens prevailing in nail biting fashion.

Jacksonville, often the doormat of the league, is out to prove they’re a sustainable, legitimate contender in the AFC. A near upset of New England in last season’s conference championship has people believing, but the return of Andrew Luck likely gives the Colts a fighting shot in the division. Don’t forget about the sneaky Titans, either. We think the Jaguars will come out just one win above their trailing teams for the division crown.

The Chiefs have moved on from Alex Smith and are entrusting their offense to young, dynamic Patrick Mahomes. Can he sustain the Kung Fu grip they’ve had on the division lately, or will the Chargers or Raiders bounce back and take the division? We see the Chargers surging back to prominence and claiming the AFC West.

Thus concludes our infallible look at which teams will reach the postseason in 2018. Given how last season’s playoffs went, we won’t even begin to guess which teams will make the Wild Card round or score an upset victory. What do you think will happen this season? Let us know in the comments below, and we hope to see a few of you in your bibs cheering from the stands!

Friday, August 24, 2018

A New College Football Season = New Uniforms

We’re mere days away from the kickoff of the 2018 college football season, and everyone here at Game Bibs HQ can hardly contain their excitement. A new season brings with it renewed hopes of football glory, big wins, exciting plays and, of course, new uniforms. Plenty of schools have taken to social media to show off their new threads and accessories, and these five are our favorites so far (in no particular order).

Oregon - We had to start the list with the elephant in the room. Oregon is the trendsetter of flashy college football uniforms, but the 2018 season brings a noticeably tamer uniform set to the field.

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Gone are the Ducks’ usually busy sleeves and sublimated patterns. Each helmet features a set of same-color wings on either side of the facemask, and jersey numbers are especially big. Traditionalists won’t like them, but considering how “out there” Oregon has been in the past, label us fans of this look.

Arizona State - The Sun Devils are making a variety of subtle changes to their football team’s look, but our favorite has to be the inclusion of the Arizona state flag across the chest and shoulders of the team’s jerseys. It’s unique, understated, and not flashy. Not sure how we feel about that gray jersey, though.

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North Carolina State - The Wolfpack began dabbling in a special helmet that features Tuffy, their throwback cartoonish wolf logo that was so popular in decades past. The helmet design went over so well with fans, students and alumni that the school is completely transitioning away from their block-S logo in favor of Tuffy. We couldn’t find a good photo of the new uniforms, but this shot shows Tuffy on the helmet from a previous season’s game.

Photo credit: Tim Bradbury/Getty Images

Virginia - They may look like a copy of the Auburn Tigers, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing when you wear uniforms as clean and classic as the Cavaliers will in 2018. UVA has made small adjustments this year to clean up their look such as matching striping patterns and using a matte white finish on their helmets. Two thumbs up.

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Oregon State - In the same vein as the NC State Wolfpack, the Beavers of Corvallis are embracing their roots by introducing a special Benny the Beaver helmet for select games. Their current look is a little too modern for our tastes, and we expect Benny to become a mainstay if the look goes over well with fans.

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While these will be the basis of each team’s 2018 look, we wouldn’t be surprised to see them trot out onto the field with special one-off uniforms for particular games. What’s your favorite look for the 2018 season? Let us know in the comments below!

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Game Bibs Fan Focus - Part 5

Our guest for the fifth installment of our Fan Focus blog series is Kristina, a die-hard baseball fan from Houston! Read on to find out more about Kristina.

When did you buy your first pair of Game Bibs?
I got my first pair when I was in 8th grade. I still use them today for my high school football games and for University of Houston college baseball games.

Do you have any game day traditions (tailgating, specific foods, etc.)?
Usually for the Astros games, hang with friends about 1-2 hours before the first pitch, then head to the bullpen after the first half inning and hang there in hopes of having a good five innings before heading to my seats.

What song gets you pumped up on game day?
Seasons before, I usually listen to Jason Alden. After winning the World Series last year, one song that always gets me pumped this year, along with Jason Alden’s music, is “World Series Grillz” by Paul Wall.

Name three game day necessities you always have with you.
I carry more than three items in my Nike backpack. I carry my glove to catch some baseballs during BP and/or games, a bottle or two of water to keep myself hydrated on days when the stadium is open and when there is a big festival on Crawford Street, my charger (if it’s going to be a long day worth of college baseball tournaments at the stadium), a baseball and some cards if I want to get something signed and a couple of Sharpies.

What's your favorite game day memory with your Game Bibs?
That’s tough, but I would say either Game 7 of the ALCS against the Yankees or Game 4 of the World Series. I know we lost Game 4, but I went with a cool friend of mine who also is a big Astros fan and is a local sports broadcaster here in Waco, TX.

If you could wear any article of clothing in the same colored stripes as your Game Bibs, what would it be? 
It would be between orange and navy pants or shoes because nobody at Minute Maid Park wears cool pants or shoes with stripes.

Tell us about a favorite sports moment you've gotten to experience.
I grew up as an Aggie, which I always tell people is why I have really strong lungs. My favorite memory was back in ‘06 when I was six years old, I went to the The AT&T Corps Classic between A&M and Army. At the last two seconds of overtime, I had to use the restroom and my mom was really mad. Till this day, I never have to go at the last minute during any event.

Do you have any big plans for this year's football season?
Hopefully attend a few U of H games this season.

What is your favorite sports movie?
Of course, The Sandlot. It’s a baseball classic and will be a classic, FOR-EV-ER.

Who is your favorite athlete?
It’s tough to choose just one, but if I had to choose two active players and two legends, they would be Nelson Cruz or Chris Devenski and Jose Cruz or Chipper Jones.

Thanks so much for taking the time to chat with us, Kristina, and best of luck to Houston's sports teams in the upcoming months! Want to be included in our Fan Focus blog series? Contact us on Facebook or Instagram!