Adam: Ranking the ‘Gempire Nights’ uniforms: Cowboy, margarita, stars and stripes work, but Star Wars … not so much

Gems jerseys

| Jersey photos courtesy of Quincy Gems

QUINCY — The Quincy Gems’ uniforms are among the best in the Prospect League. 

It’s a clean look, with the team nickname in nice, big letters across the front of the home jerseys and blue piping down the chest, around the neck and around the sleeves. The large “Q” makes the white hats simple and clean.

(Thank goodness that goofy “Jimmy Gem” logo is retired.)

However, the Gems have worn special jerseys this season on seven “Gempire Nights” at QU Stadium. The team has used them in previous years, with jerseys from the movie “Elf” and from the TV sitcom “The Office” the best. (What’s nice is that after the game, fans can buy them.)

Some are hysterical. Some are creative. Some … well, they didn’t work. Here is one person’s ranking of the “Gempire Nights” uniforms and a few thoughts as to how they could have been enhanced.

All photos courtesy of Quincy Gems

1. Country Night

The sheriff’s badge and the “vest” were great, but the fake red kerchief around the neck made this jersey work. The Gems looked like a bunch of “Woodys” from “Toy Story.” 

How to improve it: A number on the front. (Maybe on the badge?) Cowboy hats instead of baseball hats. Cowboy boots instead of cleats. A holster around every player’s waist. If you’re going to have country night, then go for it. For player introductions and the national anthem, have the players ride a horse to their position. (OK, so maybe there would have been a slight delay for the cleanup before the game started.)

2. Military Night

The Gems switched their main team colors to red, white a blue a few years ago, but the jerseys (white, with stars and stripes inside the word “Quincy” on the front) were very difficult to read. This year’s look is much improved. I’ve always been a huge fan of stripes, the stars down the sleeves were a nice accent, and the lettering and numbers across the front were much easier to read. Significant improvement over previous years.

How to improve it: Not much. How about a tall stovepipe stars and stripes hat for each player? I have one in my garage that I used during local Gus Macker tournaments. You can borrow it for an idea. 

3. Margaritaville Night

I’m surprised some college team in sunny Florida or California hasn’t already stolen this idea to use every day. How can you not think of sitting with your toes in the sand on the beach when you see these jerseys?

How to improve it: First, a number on the front. Second, while the aqua blue/green was good, pink would have been even more festive. We’ve seen major league teams wear pink batting gloves, shoes and wristbands, but how many have worn pink jerseys? Also, a lei around each player’s neck. Instead of bringing cups of water to the umpires between innings, how about a big frosty margarita with salt around the rim? Who knows how big that strike zone might get?

4. 90s Night

This theme night jersey has so many possibilities. The Gems went with a “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” theme, and the lime green shirt certainly stood out.

How to improve it: First, a number on the front (notice a trend?). The Gems didn’t go far enough with this one. If you’re going to have a “Fresh Prince” theme, then everybody needed to wear their hats sideways or backwards. Spray paint the word “Gems” across the front instead of “Fresh.” Maybe a “Friends” theme? Maybe a “Saved by the Bell” theme or an “Austin Powers, International Man of Mystery” night? How about a “Seinfeld” night with everybody wearing cotton New York Yankees uniforms and Bob Gough at the park as the assistant to the traveling secretary?

5. Capes and Crowns Night

The team encouraged fans to dress like their favorite superhero or princess. A simple yet effective look worked for the Gems as they wore Batman garb and the iconic yellow utility belt.

How to improve it: Every player should have worn a Batman mask (complete with ears), and how can you wear a Batman jersey without a flowing black cape? Give each player grappling hook gun or smoke bombs to be used at their discretion. Gems owner Jimmie Louthan could wear a tuxedo like butler Alfred Pennyworth. (Oh, and a number on the front, please.)

6. Harry Potter Night

The Gems wore a very colorful Hogwarts crest on the front of their black jerseys. However, I’ve read none of the books or seen any of the movies, so this one didn’t jazz me much. The front of the jersey was a little too busy for me.

How to improve it: Pick a different movie or a different book.

7. Star Wars Night

Eleven Star Wars movies were made, and I’ve never watched a single Star Wars minute. (Never cared much for science fiction of any kind.) Didn’t get the jersey either. Too busy. I don’t know what was going on.

How to improve it: You can’t if you’re not a Star Wars fan. What would you suggest?

To review: Five jerseys that worked, two not so much … but the home whites are still my favorites.

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