Study: Blue Jays play better in blue jerseys

David Brown
Big League Stew

Of all the Toronto Blue Jays problems in 2013 — from underperformance to injuries — nobody had thought to look at their laundry until now. Conclusion: They need to dress blue as much as possible.

When the Blue Jays wear gray uniforms on the road, their record is 3-16 — the worst performance, going by uniform, in the major leagues. When they wear their alternate blue jerseys, they've gone 17-13. That's fifth best overall. That's according to data compiled by Chris Creamer's, a website that tracks records by what uniform the team happened to wear. Wondering how the Jays decide which uniform to wear on a given day, the Toronto Star asked them:

According to a spokesman for the Jays, if a starting pitcher has a preference for a particular uniform he will pass that along to the equipment manager, Jeff Ross. If the pitcher has no preference, Ross makes the decision himself.

That's how it usually goes for most teams around the league. And the Jays aren't the only ones whose record seems at the mercy of laundry:

The Atlanta Braves are 13-1 this season when they wear their cream-coloured alternates, which they don only on weekends.

The Chicago White Sox, meanwhile, similarly struggle in their road grays, to the tune of a 6-19 record compared to 12-14 when they wear black on the road. The woeful Miami Marlins, who have won barely one-third of their games this season, actually have a winning record when they wear their bright orange tops.

It should be noted that, when the Jays wear blue jerseys at Rogers Centre, their record is virtually the same as when they wear white. It's all just a coincidence and a bunch of small sample sizes but c'mon — this is baseball, the most superstitious of the sports. You'd think the players would know, or at least get a feeling, that a particular uniform was "unlucky." The Jays did in 1993, the Star remembers, and look what happened:

The Jays ditched their white-fronted caps in favour of all-blue ones in order to halt a five-game losing streak in July. It worked and they rode the blue caps all the way to their second straight World Series.

So that's what doomed the White Sox in the '93 ALCS. It wasn't Jack McDowell tipping pitches, or being one bat short in the lineup. It was the blue road caps!

They're the Blue Jays. They need to be as blue as possible. Even blue pants, if it comes to that. Keep the Blue Jays blue.

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