clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

A history of Mets home uniforms

Looking back at every home uniform in Mets history.

MLB: Atlanta Braves at New York Mets Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets have done quite a bit of tinkering with their uniforms over the last few years. In fact, over their 56-year history, the Mets have experimented with a number of different uniform designs, supplementing their traditional home pinstripes and road greys with some combination of white, black, and blue alternate jerseys.

Here, we look back at every iteration of the team’s home uniform, with a follow-up piece on the road versions coming soon. To keep things simple (and to avoid being too tedious), we’ll focus on the main jersey design, leaving more minor details like the arm patch and hat brim color—and one-game promotional jerseys—to the side for now. Let us know what your favorite Mets home uniform is, and if you think any should return to the team’s jersey rotation!

1962-1964: The original pinstripes

1962 Mets, Roger Craig, Ralph Kiner, Elio Chacon (credit: Louis Requena/Sporting News via Getty Images) Getty Images

The original home uniform featured the classic “Mets” script on the front, angled upward, in Dodger blue outlined in Giant orange—an homage to New York’s two departed National League teams. The button-down jersey did not have a number on the front or a name on the back; it simply displayed the player’s number on the back, which was common for major league uniforms at the time.

1965-1977: Numbers on the front

Getty Images

Beginning in 1965, the Mets used largely the same home uniform, but with one addition: a uniform number on the front, located on the lower left side of the jersey.

1978: Pullovers and more stripes

Joe Torre Mets uniforms 1978 Rich Pilling/MLB Photos via Getty Images

The Mets made the first major alterations to their home jersey in 1978. The first involved switching from a button-down to a pullover. The second was the addition of three-stripe rings on the collar and both sleeves. This tri-color design would soon evolve into the famous racing stripe that became a staple of eighties-era Mets uniforms.

1979-1982: Names on the back

Lee Mazzilli 1979 Mets uniform Focus on Sport/Getty Images

As they did in 1965, the Mets made an addition to an otherwise unchanged uniform, this time adding the player’s last name across the top of the jersey’s back.

1983-1990: The racing stripes

Red Sox v Mets Photo by T.G. Higgins/Getty Images

The Mets removed the tri-color rings on the collar and sleeves in 1983, replacing them with a new tri-color design: racing stripes running down the sides of the uniform. Instead of the blue-orange-blue pattern, however, these stripes were orange-blue-orange. The Mets’ racing stripe uniforms are among their most recognizable, and are associated with the most winning period of franchise history.

1991-1992: Return of the button-down

Frank Viola Getty Images

The Mets made two small alterations to their home uniform in 1991, switching from a pullover back to a button-down, and adding a subtle white outline to the letters and numbers.

1993-1994: The tail

Doc Gooden 93-94 home jersey Focus on Sport/Getty Images

The Mets’ home uniforms featured two major changes in 1993. First was the elimination of the racing stripes, which the team had used for the previous decade. The second involved the “Mets” script across the front, whose font was changed for the first time in team history, and which was now underlined by a tail extending from the “s.”

1995-1997: Back to basics

Rick Reed Getty Images

In 1995, the Mets returned to their classic pinstripe home uniform, complete with the traditional “Mets” script on the front.

1997: The all-white alternate

Rey Ordonez Getty Images

The Mets debuted their first alternate home uniform in 1997. The all-white uniform was similar to its pinstriped counterpart, except that it featured just two blue stripes running down the front of the jersey, down the sides of the pants, and around both sleeves.

1998-2011: The black alternate

Getty Images

In a move considered heresy to many Mets fans, the team made black its third official color in 1998. For starters, that meant adding a black home alternate. While the team wore black alternates almost exclusively on the road in later years, some version of the home version stuck around for more than a decade.

1998-2011: White with black drop-shadow

John Olerud Getty Images

A new team color also meant the addition of a black drop-shadow to the letters and numbers of the white alternate jersey.

1999-2009: Pinstripes with black drop-shadow

Baltimore Orioles vs New York Mets - June 18, 2006 Photo by Bryan Yablonsky/Getty Images

A year later, the Mets added the black drop-shadow to their pinstripe jerseys as well, replacing the white outline that first appeared earlier in the decade.

1999: No names

Robin Ventura #4 Getty Images

The 1999 season was an eventful one in Mets uniform history. That year, the Mets emulated their crosstown rivals by removing the players’ names from the back of all of their home jerseys. The change lasted just one year, however, and the names returned to the jerseys in 2000.

1999: The Mercury Mets

Orel Hershiser 27 July 1999 Mercury Mets (credit: NY Daily News via Getty Images) Getty Images

Although it doesn’t really belong on this list as it was just a one-day promotion, we couldn’t help but mention the Mercury Mets. In 1999, Major League Baseball sponsored a “Turn Ahead the Clock” promotional campaign in which teams wore “futuristic” uniforms during a game. In a July 27 game at Shea, the rebranded “Mercury Mets” wore a black uniform featuring Mercury’s planetary symbol on the hat and the front of the jersey; an image of Mercury and the team’s temporary name written on the front; the player’s last name written vertically and to the right of his number on the back, instead of in the traditional horizontal space above the number; and unusually short, silver sleeves. While the promotion lasted just one day, the Mercury Mets phenomenon is still remembered as a kind of fun—albeit pretty dumb and completely bizarre—episode in Mets uniform history.

2010-2011: Cream with pinstripes

Cincinnati Reds v New York Mets Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

In 2010, the Mets made their first major uniform change in over a decade. Their home pinstripe jersey, which had previously been white, changed to an off-white cream color. From 2010 to 2011, this became the team’s home alternate, while the all-white served as the primary home uniform.

2012-2014: Black is out

84th MLB All-Star Game Getty Images

In 2012, the Mets went back to using the pinstripes as their primary home uniform, with the all-whites serving as the alternate. The Mets also removed black as an official team color that year. As a result, they removed the black drop-shadow from both their pinstripe uniform...

Atlanta Braves v New York Mets Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images

...and their all-white alternate.

2013-present: Blue is the new black

MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Mets Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports

The Mets replaced their black uniforms with blue alternates. The home version was designed like its predecessor, but with a different color scheme: the blue lettering with an orange and white drop-shadow was replaced by orange lettering with a white drop-shadow, while the thin blue stripes on the jersey and sleeves were replaced with orange ones.

2014-2015: Military Mondays

St. Louis Cardinals v New York Mets Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

In the 2014 and 2015 seasons, the Mets honored America’s servicemen and -women by wearing camouflage uniforms during “Military Monday” home games.

2015-present: Classic pinstripes

Wild Card Game - San Francisco Giants v New York Mets Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

As they did 20 years earlier, the Mets returned to their traditional home uniform: the classic blue “Mets” script, outlined in orange, over blue pinstripes and a bright white jersey. The team also eliminated its all-white uniform in 2015, making the blue version its main home alternate.

2016: The racing stripes return

MLB: Washington Nationals at New York Mets Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

To celebrate the 30-year anniversary of their 1986 championship run, the Mets brought back the racing stripe jersey for every Sunday home game in 2016. Between the eighties throwbacks and the classic orange and blue pinstripe jerseys, the Mets very much looked—and sometimes even played—like some of their most successful forbearers.