Earlier Today the Columbus Clippers had a Throwback Throwdown where you could vote on which Throwback Jerseys the team would wear during the game.
You can’t see it now, but they changed their name to the Columbus Jets and even changed their Twitter avatar. It was pretty cool. I’ve talked about the Jets before, which you can read here, the focus of that post was the ’52 Jets.
I’ve also talked about the Clippers before, earlier in they year they paid tribute to the 213th birthday of Ohio with these custom caps. The Clippers are one of the several teams I watched growing up (and still attend games when I have a chance). I have family in Columbus, and I’m never one to pass up a MiLB game.
Ultimately the powder blue unis one (I cast my vote on this uni, so I’m biased) and between the two, they were the much cooler ones.
That 70/80s baseball uniform style is the epitome of cool (at least I think so) and these are awesome. But, what’s even better is the interaction with the fans. Look at the MLB vs. the MiLB. Yes, the MLB has better caliber talent, but the MiLB makes up for that lack with teams doing things like this. There’s no way you can convince me that Major League Baseball has better promotion events than Minor League Baseball.
The Clippers are a storied team in Columbus, having a long time affiliation with the Yankees (twenty-six years to be exact), and are currently affiliated with the Indians.
Notable alumni of the Clippers include many Yankees (Jeter, Rivera to name a couple) as well as current Detroit Tigers Skipper Brad Ausmus, who played for the Clippers in 1992 where he batted .242 with 2 home runs and 56 strikeouts. That was Ausmus’s last year in the Yankees system (he spent a total of five there before being drafted by the Rockies in the ’92 expansion draft.
MiLB teams are finding more and more ways to incorporate the surrounding community into their uniforms and a way to attract more fans to the games (or to show their support for the team). The Columbus Clippers are no exception to that, with Ohio’s 213th birthday coming up they pay tribute to the celebration with the following caps:
These hats are pretty cool; the first features the Ohio Flag and the second features the outline of the state of Ohio. I have family in Columbus, so I might have to swing by a game this season wearing one of these caps at the games. As a kid I frequented Clippers games, I remember seeing Daryl Strawberry when he played for the Clippers. I thought it was the coolest thing seeing a big leaguer up close at a Clippers games.
The Clippers have a storied history dating back to 1977. From 1977 until 1984 the Clippers played in Franklin County Stadium (following the ’84 season it became Cooper Stadium) winning the Governors’ Cup, the Internation League Championship, seven times in 10 appearances. The final game played at Cooper Stadium occurred on September 1, 2008, in front of a sellout crowd of 16,777-the largest audience in stadium history.
When the Clippers began playing in 1977, they were affiliated with the Pittsburgh Pirates. In 1979, they became affiliated with the Yankees, an affiliation which would last until 206. In 2007, they became affiliated with the Washington Nationals and following the 2008 season they became affiliated with Cleveland Indians-their current affiliation. The Clippers have won 10 Governors’ Cup in thirteen appearances as well they have won the AAA baseball title twice.
Having had a twenty-six-year affiliation with the Yankees, the Clippers have plenty notable alumni including Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera.
Derek Jeter played for the Clippers in three seasons (1994, 1995, 1998) playing in 1598 games posting a line of .355/.411/.571 hitting 5 HRs, 61 RBIs and collecting 200 hits. Courtesy of the Clippers you can Jeter suited up in their uniform.
Rivera meanwhile played for the Clippers in ’94 and ’95 accumulating a record of 6-4 while posting an ERA of 3.95 with a 1.176 WHIP in 13 games (all of which were starts, not the relief that Rivera became famous for). In 61 IP he struck out 53 while giving up 32 runs and seven home runs. Here’s an image of Rivera when he played for the Clippers
Watching Jeter and Rivera play for the Clippers was probably a treat that people look back on a go man I saw them play in Columbus. If I had that’s what I’d be saying.
Happy 213th Birthday Ohio.