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Battle of the uniforms: 1991 vs. 1940

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Mark McGwire #25

A few weeks ago I posited the question: What is the best Cardinals uniform ever?

Well friends, there is only one way to find out: Battle Royale.

So, to determine the best Cardinals uniform ever, I have, with your gracious assistance, created a bracket where each uniform will duke it out until we have a winner.

(Many of you have asked about the alternate jersey the Cardinals debuted in 2013. Don't worry, folks. I have a plan. Trust the system.)

Here is the bracket, updated to reflect the winner of the previous matchup:

The 1969 uniform squeaked by its modern day counterpart with 54% of the vote to make it into the finals.

Who will join 1969 in the Championship Round? This week the voting continues with...

The 1991 uniform is the surprise contender of this quarterfinal, besting the much beloved uniform of the 80s to get to the Final Four. At the time it was a shocking upset, but looking on at the other combatants remaining in this battle royale, perhaps it shouldn’t be. The 1990s uniform is modern reboot of a classic look. It is actually quite similar to the design of the 1969 uniform that just advanced to the finals, both button-ups bearing the classic Birds on the Bat, as modeled by the lovely Tom Henke above. The only real difference being the fabric and the ever-so-subtle modifications to the birds.

Notable achievements:

  • In 1995 Tom Henke recorded 300 saves, the seventh pitcher to do so
  • The 1995 team finished 62-81, fourth in the central
  • Ray Lankford was on this team
  • Wearing this uniform in 1998, Mark McGwire hit 70 home runs

Of course the 1991 uniform's Cinderella run might come an end at the hands of the Cardinals Uniform Goliath: the 1940 Uniform. The 1940 uniform took the number one seed and it is not difficult to see why. The uniform displays the beautiful simplicity we have grown to know and love with the team’s current design. The team deviated from this iconic logo a few times, but ultimately always brought is back. In 1934 the team brought back the Birds on the Bat with the city name inscribed on the front. Around 1940, the team changed the city name back to "Cardinals". The simple birds and font coupled with the red piping has made this uniform an instant classic (despite the fact that it featured a zipper in 1939). It is modeled above by who I think is Billy Southworth, the manager in 1940.

Notable achievements:

  • The 1940 team finished 84-69 for third in the National League, led by first baseman Johnny Mize with 7.4 bWAR
  • Between 1934 and 1954, the era this uniform or some similar variant was worn, the Cardinals we 1884 - 1344, good for a .577 winning percentage and went to the World Series five times, winning four times
  • The uniform is largely associated with the "Gashouse Gang" of the 1934 Cardinals, a term meant to be an insult at the team’s shabby appearance, but became a source of pride, a shot at the "aristocracy" of the American League

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