The World Baseball Classic is officially underway!
While many will discuss the on-field competition as the tournament wears on, we're going to discuss what really matters: headwear.
There's nothing like a good fitted hat, one that fits properly and looks dope.
The WBC recently tweeted out photos of every team's hat:
Some of these are fire. Some of them are not. Let's rank them!
(Ranking guidelines: I'm ranking these based only on the hats pictured in the above tweet. I'm also ranking these based on the order in which I would purchase them. For a look at the wrong rankings, click here).
Yikes. There are a couple of things wrong with this hat.
First, the font is terrible. The "T" looks way too much like a lower-case "R." Clean it up.
Perhaps the more egregious offense here is the baseball stitching inside the "C." The need for baseball-related items on your baseball team's hat is entirely unnecessary outside of Minor League Baseball. Use a clearer font, lose the stitching and this hat ranks better next time.
What a terrible hat. Do you know how hard it is to mess up red, white and navy blue? Really hard.
It looks as if the U.S. couldn't decide on a star or the "U.S." logo on the hat so they decided to slap them both on there. Then they realized they didn't like the star, but they were already committed to it so they just enlarged the font on the "U.S." to try and hide the star. It did not work. This is a bad hat.
Love that they went Diamond Era. If you're unfamiliar with the mesh style hats MLB teams wear for Spring Training and batting practice, get familiar with them. They're outstanding. Unfortunately, South Korea's lid has two major flaws.
First, they go with the tri-color bill—blue top, red middle, gray underneath. That style of bill is reserved for hats you buy for seven dollars at a truck stop.
Second, while that "K" isn't awful, it looks like something I'd draw in fifth grade and tell everyone I was getting a tattoo of it someday.
The good news is you can see the "NL" from outer space. The bad news is you can also see it on Earth.
This is actually a decent hat and an upgrade from their 2013 joints. The J is clean. They went with the mesh style. The tri-color bill is a no-no, but the gold is a clean enough look that they don't lose too many points on it. Unfortunately their hat is made by Mizuno and not New Era, thus giving it a low ranking. No thank you.
Venezuela's 2013 WBC hat was Tyreke Evans when he was first with the Kings. Their 2017 WBC hat is Tyreke Evans now with the Kings. I see what they were going for, but the yellow "V" is too much. White "V," yellow outline would've been money.
Canada has the same issue as the US in terms of smashing two designs onto the same hat. Their "C" with the baseball on it actually works. Probably because Canada is like a minor league country (I'M JOKING, RELAX).
Anyway, they can't go with just the maple leaf because the Blue Jays already did that. Instead of trying to fit it in with the "C," they should have just left the "C" by itself.
Of all the clean, basic looks, this one leaves the most to be desired. The "C" just looks too much like an "E." They'd also benefit from a two-tone look with a red bill if they're going to use the narrow "C." Side note: Colombia's flag is very underrated.
The DR has such a simple hat that it's hard to knock. However, the font is a little weak and doesn't quite pop like some of the others. Get used to seeing this though. They'll at least go deep in the tournament if they don't win the whole thing.
The Chinese team hat is very dope. It needs some type of outline though. The red and yellow is a lot of harsh color all at once. This would really benefit from maybe a white outline around the "C." Still—decent colors, sweet font, good hat.
There are several versions of the team Mexico hat and all of them are pretty awesome. The one pictured in the tweet is their weakest one though, not to knock it, because the "M" is great and red jibes well with green. The green crown was a bold choice, and it works, just not as well as some of their competitors.
This is a really good hat. Dark green and yellow is a stellar color combo, and they execute the design well. It would work even better if the "A" was featured a little more prominently. Perhaps President Trump could get on the horn with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and....wait, what's that? You say that's a bad idea? Okay, scratch that then. Moving on.
From the looks of it, Italy and Cuba used the same font for their hats. The only real difference in these hats is whether you like the "I" or the "C" better. I couldn't pick which one I liked more, so I moved on to the bill. I personally prefer single color hats over two-tone (blue crown/blue bill vs. blue crown/red bill). I prefer the blue-on-blue, thus, Italy edges out Cuba. Science.
The Dominican Republic hat could take a page out of the Puerto Rican hat's book. The bold "PR" with the red outline helps this one pop. The subtle overlap is outstanding as well. To fit the hat right, the letters needed to cross some, but too much would have been a huge cluster. Way to go, designers of this hat. You nailed it.
There are a ton of really great WBC hats, but this one tops them. The Star of David design surrounding the subtle wavy "I" is outstanding. The use of peripheral design and a letter was done better than any other country. This was difficult to pull off and could have gotten botched in a variety of ways, but they crushed it.
And that is how you properly rank hats. You're welcome.
Experiment 626. Coffee drinker and cat enthusiast. Pro-avocado. Anti-sac bunt. Habitual bat flipper. Alex Smith apologist. Yoenis Cespedes fanboy.