In 2016, Major League Baseball announced that it would be severing ties with Majestic Athletic, its official uniform supplier. Majestic is based in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh Valley, and it looked as if its 500 factory workers would soon be out of work. Even worse, MLB said it would be switching to Under Armour, a Baltimore-based company which nonetheless manufactures 63 percent of its wares in Asia. This was not a good look for newish MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, and it would have gone down as yet another in a long line of attempts by Manfred to ruin the game of baseball.
However, in Donald Trump’s America, jobs don’t leave the U.S. that easily. On Tuesday, MLB announced that Majestic had been purchased by Fanatics, a sports merchandise and apparel retailer based in Florida. Furthermore, Fanatics and Under Armour will partner with MLB as part of a joint 10-year agreement that makes them the exclusive providers of both official game-worn uniforms and fan gear. This will keep the entire manufacturing operation in Easton, Pa.
Under Armour confirmed the victory of U.S. jobs, with a statement saying, “The men and women of Easton will continue to play a major role in building Under Armour’s MLB team apparel business. Under Armour is both committed to and proud of the tradition of manufacturing MLB on-field uniforms in the United States.” But the real hero here is Fanatics. Fanatics is also an official partner of the NFL, NBA, NHL, NASCAR, NCAA and more sports leagues. They also make great baseball paraphernalia. Especially since it is all made in the U.S.