SBD/January 26, 2011/Franchises

Are Padres' Latest Military-Inspired Alternate Jerseys Too Camouflaged?

Padres unveil the third version of the team's camouflage jersey
The third version of the Padres' camouflage tops is the "most authentic by far," according to Bill Center of the SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE. That raises the question: "If the new camouflage uniforms are so authentic that they blend into background from a distance, will Padres fans recognize the tribute the club is trying to pay the military?" The Padres unveiled the new uniforms yesterday, and LF Will Venable said, "When you move around they change color, but it's hard to describe the color. They really blend in." The Padres in the past "used camouflage uniforms representing designs used by the Army and Navy SEALs," but those uniforms "had bolder colors and designs." From a distance, "you could tell those uniforms were designed to represent camouflage." But the new uniforms "are camouflage." The Padres "had to receive permission from the Marine Corps to use the computer-programmed MARPAT design," which "features hundreds of thousands of smaller multicolor patches that are intertwined ... instead of having patches of camouflage colors." The team's use of the copyrighted MARPAT design was "approved by the Marine Corps last year." Corporal Frederico Smith said, "From a distance, these look exactly [like] what we're wearing. No two patterns are alike. There are no copycats." Center reports each replica of the new camouflage uniforms "will carry an official approval from the Marine Corps," and a "portion of each sale will benefit the Marine Corps Assistance Program" (SAN DIEGO UNION-TRIBUNE, 1/26).

MILITARY APPRECIATION: MLB.com's Corey Brock reported the Padres will sponsor a Military Appreciation Pavilion located near the 14th green at this week's PGA Tour Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines outside San Diego. The venue is "free for military members attending the tournament," and the pavilion is "open only to active duty military and their families." Spectators who wear their Padres gear to the tournament "will have access to a special Padres grandstand, located adjacent to the Military Appreciation Pavilion." The Padres last season "provided more than 67,000 discounted tickets to the local military community." Last month, the Padres' Holiday Caravan included a visit to Wounded Warriors at Naval Regional Medical Center San Diego, "where the team presented a check to the Fisher House for a portion of the proceeds raised through the sale of military logo merchandise in 2010" (MLB.com, 1/25). 
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