ST. LOUIS — A line of baseball caps launched Tuesday by New Era trying to celebrate big league cities was met by overwhelming criticism and appears to have already been shelved by the company.
The “Local Market” hats were removed from New Era's website hours after their introduction. The series included one cap for each team featuring the club's primary logo, area codes for the surrounding communities and various iconography meant to represent the area.
There were several issues. The area code selection was inconsistent, including several notable omissions — the Tampa Bay Rays' hat didn't include St. Petersburg, where the team's stadium is located, for example; the Pittsburgh Pirates' version had no area codes at all.
The Cardinals version of the "Local Market" hats featured only the 314 area code, a state outline, the Gateway Arch and toasted ravioli.
The decals were lampooned as tacky, generic and at times inaccurate — Cincinnati fans had particular beef over a poor rendering of their beloved local chili.
The caps were never meant to be worn by players in games, MLB said. New Era did not respond to a request for comment from The Associated Press.