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Milwaukee Brewers' new logos and uniforms are from their past
Lou Saldivar, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

What was once old is new again.

This was the Milwaukee Brewers' message when they announced a branding overhaul Monday night in the Skyy Lounge at Miller Park. The team confirmed growing rumors that they were returning to the clever, iconic Ball-in-Glove logo that identified the team until 1994, when they continued after 25 years.

But these are not your parents. Ball-in-glove.

The Brewers gave him some modern flourishes by linking the "m" and the "b" that make up the glove, changing the color from royal blue to navy blue and putting two seams on a now centered baseball to make it more authentic to look like. Rick Schlesinger, president of the baseball division, said it intended to remain true to the nature of the original logo and to develop it at the same time in order to rename the player uniforms.

"What we did is we took the classic ball. In-glove and made certain modest changes, modest improvements that we thought they would increase it, "said Schlesinger.

The logo and the unified changes will coincide with the celebration of the team's 50th anniversary in the 2020 season

Club officials realized that many fans never let go of the ball while the team went through different logos. First, they switched to an interlocking "M" and "B" and crossed bats over a diamond shape. This draft lasted only six years before the team was turned into a cursive "Brewers" over a circle with the word "Milwaukee" and barley branches as an allusion to the city's brewing heritage in anticipation of the move from County Stadium to Miller Park.

CONNECTED : The art student of Eau Claire created the Milwaukee Brewers Ball-in-Glove logo.

In a clear view, like Brewers Ball-in-Glove

in 2018, the Brewers simplified this logo with a large, italic "M" on a single branch of barley.

The fans clearly liked this logo.

19659014] Along the way, however, the Brewers introduced retro uniforms and merchandise with the original ball-in-glove design. The receipts showed that many fans wanted to buy and wear this logo. Therefore, more and more articles were produced with this logo.

"Our fans spoke very clearly and very loudly that they loved this logo," said Schlesinger. "While we started the design process with a completely open book and an open mind, we involved someone from outside to lead the process, who had no history with the Brewers, no story with the ball-in-glove and frankly For some other ideas, it became clear that the primary logo should be a version of the ball-in-glove that was true to the story but also contained some modern elements.

"We always knew that fans loved the ball-in glove. Before we released it in 2006 as part of our unified system, we had the impression that there was a part of our fans who grew up with Harvey's Wallbangers in the 70s and 80s. We were not sure if the newer fans would accept it because they had grown up with the "wheat ball".

Retail sales was a great measurement – just the response we get when we show it in giveaways and promotional items.

Schlesinger and his co-workers agreed that some fans would prefer a return to the Ball-in-Glove logo as originally preferred without any changes. The idea is to find a balance.

"We also believe that there are opportunities, this time one of them where you can make some adjustments to our brand while still respecting the past and heritage of the past, but also bringing in some changes I think our fans to be happy. "

2020: home shirt. [Photo: Tom Haudricourt / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]

While the return to the Ball-in-Glove logo, modern as it may be, certainly attracts the most attention, the Brewers are equally excited about the rebranding their uniforms, with two home versions and two street versions. The primary home uniform will have a cream color instead of the traditional white with a slightly curved "BREWERS" on the jersey.

This change is a nod to Milwaukee's nickname as "Cream City," which derives from the cream-colored brick used as common building materials in the mid to late 19th century.

"Our fans will look at different things, but the cream color has very few teams," said Schlesinger. "The Phillies have a version and the Giants have them as their home classic. It's a pretty small group.

The Brewers will wear Wisconsin sleeve picks in their street uniforms with a pickled brick pattern and baseball placed where the city of Milwaukee would be. Another patch will feature baseball with barley branches – an allusion to the city's brewery history and the name of the team – instead of the curved seams.

The alternative home uniform is an allusion to the retro style worn by the team for several seasons on Fridays. The pinstripes were standard in the Brewers in the 70s and 80s. Both home uniforms will feature navy blue baseball caps with the updated Ball-in-Glove logo.

The primary street uniform will be gray with gold and blue piping and a slightly curved "MILWAUKEE" over the jersey. However, the hat will look different and have a gold bezel around the logo. The alternative street uniform will wear a navy jersey with a cursive "Milwaukee" at an angle on the front and the same gray pants.

The process began two years ago

Schlesinger said the players had seen the new and worn uniforms. Ryan Braun, Brent Suter, Brandon Woodruff and Keston Hiura modeled it at the unveiling event.

"They were very complementary," he said. "They are very excited. I think our players have the ball in their hands and know how important this is for our fans. "

The Brewers began to redesign more than two years ago, and it was not surprising that it all began at the top owner Mark Attanasio, wife Debbie and her two sons Dan and Mike The Brewers hired Rodney Richardson of RARE Design Richardson oversaw rebranding for several NBA teams, but no major league baseball "We said," Rodney, we do not want you to be in a box full of Feels caught up in ideas, "Schlesinger said." We want you to think of everything that could work. & # 39; He did a lot of research. He did not come on the first day and said: "Here are my designs." He talked to us for hours about what do brewers mean? "Give me three words that describe the brewers Give me three words that describe the city of Milwaukee Give me three words that describe the state."

Richardson, who had not previously visited Milwaukee, made several trips from Mississippi with his staff to attend games at Miller Park, talk to fans, see which team clothes were most worn, and generally get a piece of land. It quickly became clear how deep the ball-in-glove logo was rooted in team history, and how much the fans still subscribed to that symbol.

"It's just such an enormous brand, and the story and everything it represents," said Richardson. "As we continued to research, it kept climbing to the top, rather than the one that best suits this story."

During his visits to Milwaukee, Richardson said a recurrent theme that was unmistakable was how much Brewers fans love their team. They regularly pull out much larger markets at the gate, and this deep connection made it all the more important to get the rebranding right.

Richardson, for example, said, "If (to cream-colored uniforms) was a decision that was only made to be different, they are always risky and we do not like making decisions like these. That's why we do the research we do. They are enormous, if they are authentic The history of the city and embraces it … This team belongs to this city, which is a unique place in the world.

In Search of Something Timeless

Richardson admitted that he approached the revelation on Monday with a touch of nervousness, knowing that the fans' approval meant anything.

"We want that they love it, "he said," We fell in love with their story and their team and created a face for it. We want that to resonate with them.

The Brewers will wear a special 50th anniversary patch next season, but this patch will disappear after 2020, but the new uniforms will not disappear, this is not a one-time renaming that only takes place half a century ago to celebrate in Milwaukee – and to sell a few things in the Team Store.

"We do not do this – a whole rebranding and identity system – for the retail opportunity," said Schlesinger, because we want to do something

"One of the things you try to do in this process is something that is timeless … It's extremely difficult, no matter what you do, your brain says But you do not know until you live it – we've been trying to find a consistent typeface that we thought would resonate. "

Not to mention an iconic logo, that on one Such a level of appeal found that it officially re-emerges business, with a few modern enhancements.

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