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Published 08/17/2023, 11:38 AM EDT

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A jersey swap in sports is a common way of recognizing talent. Players from across sports recognize the greatness of a player and choose to mark it out of sheer respect for each other. But while the recognition of talent often takes center stage, the players taking part in a jersey swap are often related in one way or another. But 2023 looks like it’s set to break all we know about jersey swaps. An unexpected exchange across MLB and NFL had fans scratching their heads.

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Baseball and football have been American staples for a long time. With the gridiron capturing American attention for its glamour, baseball has always been the nation’s pass time. And while unsurprising that players from each sport recognize each other’s superiority, it perhaps was perplexing when it came from completely unexpected quarters.

MLB Icon Swaps Jerseys with NFL Star

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Roger Clemens, perhaps baseball’s most effective pitcher, was snapped swapping his iconic Pinstripe jersey with the NFL’s Tyreek Hill. The Miami Dolphins wide receiver and the baseball icon were seen exchanging jerseys from their former teams. The ex-MLB Icon posted the photo on social media stating, “Who wins in a race?“.

While Hill’s jersey was signed and marked that it was from the star, it appears as though Clemens’ iconic pinstriped #22 was not. And while the exchange was surely an unexpected turn, it was definitely a way of game recognizing game.

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Clemens is one of baseball’s foremost pitchers. And while not yet a part inducted into Cooperstown, the star has a special place in the hearts of baseball fans.

Hill meanwhile is not yet of the same stature in his sport. The 29-year-old has some ways yet to go in his career and could see his stock rise in the NFL. But who knows, maybe his jersey may even rise in value in the years to come.

Awkward Jersey Swaps of 2023

While undoubtedly adding to the layer of intrigue and interest around the sport, the jersey swap did bring up some questions. With Clemens having no connection to Hill’s Miami Dolphins, several netizens pointed out that they saw no real objective behind the swap. With Clemens throwing further doubts after tweeting his allegiance to the Astros promptly afterward.

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Clemens has played for several teams across Major League Baseball including the New York Yankees, the Boston Red Sox, the Toronto Blue Jays, and even the Houston Astros but fans struggled to see a Florida connection.

Hill too, while first spending time with the Kansas City Chiefs, switched over to the Miami Dolphins in 2022. The two players are no strangers to controversy either. Both Clemens and Hill have been the subject of media scrutiny for their actions off the playing field. And perhaps that is what bought the two together.

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Or perhaps it is simply a case of two players recognizing the level of talent it takes to operate at its most competitive. And kudos to the two for taking out the time and giving the fans a truly memorable occasion.

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Written by:

Aditya Deshingkar

723Articles

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Aditya Deshingkar is a MLB writer at EssentiallySports. In another life, Aditya was a lawyer with a premier legal firm in the country and has recently made the switch. As an avid sports lover, he shares a keen interest in NBA, MLB, and Formula 1.
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