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Ganging Up on the Yankees

Have the New York Yankees entered into co-branding deals with America's most notorious gangs? 

So it seemed as of yesterday, when back-to-school shoppers in Harlem found Yankees caps incorporating colors and insignia associated with (left to right) the Bloods, the Latin Kings, and the Crips. 

It turns out that the merchandise was legit, manufactured by New Era under a licensing agreement with Major League Baseball.  The Yankees, however,  claim that they had no knowledge of or control over the designs.  The caps have been withdrawn from stores, with disclaimers all 'round and a promise by New Era to do a better job in the future -- but not before at least one kid found himself explaining to his dad why wearing one in the wrong neighborhood might not be such a good idea. 

As a Yankee fan -- citizens of the Red Sox nation can stop reading now -- I've long found its clothing licensees to be stylistically inept.  With one of the world's most elegant logos and a legacy of navy and white pinstripes at their disposal, the best they can do for female fans is a flimsy pink camisole with the team name surrounded by flowers?  After this latest fashion faux pas, however, I'm starting to suspect that the MLB organization actually has it out for the Yankees.

At least counterfeiters of Yankees merchandise -- and there are many -- show some respect for the team's style.