“WHAT TO WEAR TO A BASEBALL GAME?”
This post mostly addresses practical issues for people who have never been to a baseball game. I also have information for what to wear to a baseball game in bad weather.
“What should a girl wear to a baseball game?”
I always feel sorry for the women I see get off the 7 train on game nights wearing nice trousers, cute shoes, and carrying the big fancy leather purse that is all the rage these days. You can always tell who’s the diehard fan who just got out of work late, and who hasn’t been to a game since she was 12 (if ever). The latter was dressing for fashion and didn’t stop to think, “Gee, I’m going to be sitting outside for three hours and eating food sitting in my seat, maybe I should wear something that doesn’t need to be drycleaned and shoes I don’t care about getting stepped on.”
Then there are the women who think, “I have no idea what to wear to a baseball game. Maybe I’ll do some research on the internet.” They go online and enter a few queries, and “what should a girl wear to a baseball game” brings them here… where I have nothing that can help them. So I decided to do something about that.
I surveyed a handful of cool female baseball fans of my acquaintance to get their input, which follows. None of them know each other but it was striking to me how many similarities there are. Then again, most of it’s common sense.
Kristen, Nationals fan
“A girl should wear whatever she feels comfortable in, as long as she remembers that baseball is entertainment for families. I go to a lot of games in Washington D.C. where young girls are coming straight from work — so there’s a wide range. From shorts, tanks, tees and hats — to dress suits or even dresses. I think sundresses are a little strange, for a baseball game, but to each her own. Just respect that families go and there are lots of kids. You shouldn’t necessarily dress like you’re ready to go party all night long.
What do I wear? Nats jerseys, t-shirts or plain tops with jeans. I remember this one time though where I really didn’t plan on going, there was like a 2 hour rain delay, but a rookie was making his debut. When I realized it was going to start at like 9 p.m., I left my apartment in black lounge pants, a Pitt hoodie and flip flops. I was praying noone would see me, but of course there were only a few hundred people left at the game after the rain delays. Like I said, whatever you’re comfortable in!”
Julie, Mets fan
“Not taking weather into account, I typically wear a Mets player t-shirt that I own or my Wright Jersey (over the aforementioned t-shirt.) The player t-shirt is always a Wright one, it’s the only player apparel I own. The jersey is the white, no stripes jersey. Goring further, I have his player shirt in white, blue and orange with orange my favorite. f I’m at an away Mets game, I lean towards the orange because it’ll stand out more. Not a fan of the pink at all, it’s not one of my team’s colors.”
Cyn, Red Sox fan
“What should a girl wear? This is simple: You wear what’s comfortable and weather-appropriate. Just like a guy. You shouldn’t be dressing with the idea that people will be checking out what you’re wearing. If that’s your concern, go to a club not a ballpark.
My focus when I go to the park is to enjoy the game. Knowing that I’ll be in one seat for an extended amount of time in, usually, hot weather makes my want to wear comfortable clothing. If I’m going to the game from home, I wear a comfortable pair of pants or shorts (longer shorts so I’m not sticking to the seats!), sneakers – always sneakers – and a Red Sox jersey. Usually I have a tank top or t-shirt on under the jersey in case it gets really hot and I want to take off the jersey. In the cooler weather I have a Red Sox hooded sweatshirt that zippers up the front. I usually bring a baseball cap with me in case it gets cold or the sun is beating down on me. If I’m going to the game from work, I usually wear whatever I wore to work (except I make sure I have my sneakers and if I’m wearing a dress or skirt I bring a pair of pants to change into) and throw a jersey over it.”
Karen, Mets fan
Raleigh, NC (originally Long Island)
“What should a girl wear to a baseball game? my answer is always ‘whatever you are comfortable in’. Personally, though, I never dress in team attire – it’s not who I am. I love my team, but I’ve never been comfortable being a living billboard for anyone. At the most, I would wear a NY Mets hat, if the mood so grabbed me (or if I was having a terrible hair day). I find I can love my team with a passion that exists even in these troubled times, but I’ve never been a fan of a shirt with a name across the back.”
Sara, Yankees fan
“Short shorts and/or skirts are a mistake as you will stick to your seat, and get lines on the back of your legs. White is a mistake as you will invariably sit on/against something icky/stainy, or have something spilled on you. The pink version of your team’s logo is a mistake because it’s unclear who you are rooting for and really just identifies you as someone who would rather be someone else. Further, the “girl” version of your team’s logo is confusing. Just wear the logo and the color as intended, or wear something else entirely.”
“For me the most important part of getting dressed for a baseball game is remembering that I will mostly be sitting, usually outside, which means cold will be colder and hot will be hotter. I consider the other team’s colors and stay away from them, but don’t always wear navy pinstripes. I always wear sneakers, even when it’s hot (this isn’t the beach; also, I always wear sneakers). I always have pockets for easy camera and cash access. I often wear my cap. Generally I just dress as I always dress (this isn’t the theatre or a job interview).”
“If you are not a child you should not wear a jersey with someone else’s name on it.”
Sarah, Mariners fan
Charter Season Ticket Holder
Sarah’s short answers:
What should a girl wear to a baseball game?
A baseball cap, a flattering shirt with either the team’s logo or in the team’s colors, jeans with back pockets, and comfortable sneakers. No logo merchandise from unrelated teams, and nothing you would typically wear when you’re out clubbing with your BFFs.”
“What do I wear to a baseball game?
My well-worn comfy 2001 All Star Game hat, a navy blue tank top, an Ichiro hoodie, my favorite blue jeans, and my Under Armour cross-trainers.”
Sarah’s longer answers, because they are awesome:
“First off, I live in Seattle, where it’s all about the layers. I can hardly remember a game during which I did not alter my clothing configuration in some way. If it’s a day game, I usually start with a cami/tank top, plus a long-sleeved shirt to go over it, and then a jacket or sweater or both. The outer layers are typically slung over my arm for quicker entry through security so I don’t need to deal with the ridiculous waste of time that is a bag check. On my lower half, I’m a big believer in jeans with functional pockets. I like to be able to carry a skinny wallet and my game ticket and maybe my cell phone in my back pockets to facilitate quick trips to the concourse. I love to be able to jump out of my seat quickly with everything I need if I decide to bolt up the stairs when a double-play suddenly ends an inning, or during a pitching change. Plus, the under-seat areas of baseball seating sections are some of the most disgusting places I’ve ever seen, so I wouldn’t want to leave a purse/bag there. Ick. And it’s a hassle to hold a bag in your lap because no matter where you sit, you’re constantly getting up and down for other people throughout the game. (Not to mention the actual getting up to cheer while enjoying the game.) As for shoes, for a sunny day game it’s flip-flops or other flat sandals with appropriately scuffed soles, but most of the year and for the evening games it’s the comfiest cross-trainers I own. I leave the heels and the designer boots at home, as they just don’t work and play well with spilled beer, stair-walking, and slippery concrete concourses.
And then there’s The Hat. I almost always wear a baseball cap, unless it’s super-cold and I need something wooly to cover my ears. When I wear a cap, I like the classic look of the pony-tail popping out of the back of the space between the hat and the strap thingy. My favorite caps are ones that have a canvas size-adjusting strap across the back. They’re the comfiest on my head and if I decide to turn them around backwards, they don’t leave a tacky set of pockmarks across my forehead as do the cheaper hats with plastic straps. I have a few fitted hats but if I do the flip-around, the tag ends up itching the inside of the middle of my forehead. Plus, they don’t lend themselves well to too many hairstyling options.
In terms of branding myself, my goal is usually to wear one team-logo item. Typically for me, that’s the hat, and then maybe my outermost layer. I often see women dripping in team-logo warm-ups, a T-shirt, a jacket, a hat, and dangly earrings, and I just think that makes them look even more like the poseurs they know they are. Having said all of this, I am always impressed when I travel to “true” baseball cities by how decked out the fans are. I do think there’s a time and a place for face-painting and hair coloring and all of that, and I always enjoy it for people-watching, but I’m just not good at being that conspicuous myself.
I am also fond of baseball-themed clothes that aren’t necessarily Officially Licensed Merchandise. I have a jacket from the Field of Dreams (the site where the movie was filmed in Iowa) that I love. I also like plain baseball-jersey style shirts (with the contrast-color three-quarter sleeves). My husband’s long-sleeved shirt from the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown is my favorite baseball item in his wardrobe. I think these things say “I’m a baseball fan” but they’re subtle and interesting and different, and they might be conversation-starters with the people around you.
As for what NOT to wear — maybe it’s a personal bias, but I’m not a huge fan of the generic T-shirt, especially for women. If the only baseball item in your closet is an Eddie Guardado Fruit-of-the-Loom giveaway from 8 years ago, especially if it features a huge “Nissan” sponsor logo, I’d say skip it and wear something that makes you look great, and if it happens to be your team’s colors, even better.
I’m also completely mystified by people who wear logo stuff from teams to unrelated to the game at hand. I once asked a guy near me why he was wearing an Angels hat to see the Twins play Seattle, and his answer was that he’s from LA. Now, if he wears that hat to every event ever, and it’s so well-worn he’s got a wrinkle across his forehead from it, fine. Whatever. But if he happens to be living in Seattle now but the Angels hat is the only baseball-related item he owns, then I don’t see how it’s relevant for him to wear it. Am I supposed to look at it and feel sorry for him? “Oh, that poor guy would rather see an Angels game but he’s stuck here in Seattle and he’s just making the best of it”? Or maybe “Wow, that guy is SUCH an Angels fan that he came to a Mariner game to chart pitches for when we play each other six weeks from now.” Seriously, I just don’t get it. Of course, Yankee fans are their own insidious breed of this kind of thing. They just do it because they’re mean bullies who don’t know how to let go and not be in everyone else’s faces about their Yankee-fan-ness at every opportunity. I know I’m preaching to the choir here but seriously people, get over yourselves.”
Thanks to the ladies who participated. Now, argue amongst yourselves.