From Tiffany & Co. to Spike Lee: What Made the New York Yankees Cap So Iconic and Popular?

Published 11/02/2021, 5:45 PM EDT
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – OCTOBER 04: Aaron Judge #99 of the New York Yankees reacts as he walks back to the dugout after making a diving catch to close out the top of the seventh inning in game one of the American League Division Series at Yankee Stadium on October 04, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)


Over the years, the New York Yankees established themselves as one of the most popular franchises not just in the MLB, but all over the world. When their players don the black and white stripes and step onto the diamond, millions across the world almost instantly react to their presence.

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One of the most iconic aspects of the Yankees is their cap, which often features as a symbol amongst millions. Here’s how the cap, and the evergreen Yankees logo, started from humble beginnings to become a staple across the world.

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The origins of the iconic New York Yankees cap

The story begins at the long-standing jewellery brand, Tiffany & Co. over a century ago. In 1877, the famous brand designed the NY logo which features on Yankees jerseys today. However, when the team adopted the logo in 1909, they were known as the New York Highlanders.

In 1919, the Yankees franchise one of its greatest moments as Babe Ruth joined them from the Boston Red Sox. They enjoyed incredible success with Ruth at the fore, which increased their brand value and identity significantly.

 

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37 years after Ruth joined the Yankees, the iconic Yankees cap made its debut. In 1956, New Era introduced the famed rounded cap design which fans took to quickly. However, the biggest moment in the cap’s history came in 1996. Enter Spike Lee, who wanted a red-colored cap despite its availability in just one color.

In their depiction of the cap’s history, Jake Mintz and Jordan Shusterman revealed how a phone call from Lee inspired the hat to go multi-color. “Unfortunately, they didn’t make any other color hat at the time. So, what did he do? Picked up the phone. He called Yankees owner George Steinbrenner personally and asked for one red Yankees hat,” narrated Mintz.

“The owner said yes, sent Spike Lee the hat. He wore it on camera and then everyone wanted one.”

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Can the Yankees recapture their glory days of old in 2022?

While they have a record 27 World Series titles, they haven’t quite been as successful in recent years. In fact, their last World Series victory came in 2009, which shows how much they struggled to get to the top since then.

Oct 5, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; New York Yankees manager Aaron Boone (17) pulls starting pitcher Gerrit Cole (45) during the third inning against the Boston Red Sox in the American League Wildcard game at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

While they have Aaron Boone as their manager for the next three years, they also have a talented roster. And with several top stars like Carlos Correa becoming free agents after the ongoing season, Yankees fans will hope to see a strong team challenge for top honors next year.

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WATCH STORY: Gerrit Cole, Giancarlo Stanton and More: Top 5 Highest New York Yankees Stars 2021

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Sanket Nair

876 articles

Sanket Nair is an F1 & US Sports Author at EssentiallySports. He began following F1 since 2010, which made him an instant Sebastian Vettel fan. His favorite tracks on the calendar include Spa-Francorchamps, Monaco and Monza.

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