is back in full swing as teams everywhere are taking the court for the first
time with the optimism that comes with a new season. After a busy offseason
full of stars joining up and switching teams, fans are ready to see how their
favorite team will come together. Show off the pride you have in your team or
favorite player with authentic fan gear from Eastbay.
Whether you’re shopping for yourself or another athlete in your life check out our Top Fan Gear Gifts below to see what you need to win the holidays.
The reigning MVP has one mission this season, to be standing under the confetti celebrating his first championship. Show your support for the Greek Freak by rocking Milwaukee’s colors. You can find jerseys and shorts for all your favorite teams and players at eastbay.com.
There is perhaps no player capable of more jaw-dropping moves and shots than The Beard. James Harden has shown there is no such thing as a bad shot for him, and you can rep that confidence in a throwback Houston jersey.
Scottie Pippen showed that it doesn’t matter where you’re from as long as you can ball. One of the greatest defenders ever at the point of attack, Pippen was an integral part of Chicago’s dynasty and now you can be too.
Ever since 1985, the league’s top power hitters have come together every year to put on a show for fans during the All-Star break via the home run ball. The rules have changed over time, but the overall purpose of the derby is simple: given the same limits of outs or time, hit more home runs than everyone else.
From Darryl Strawberry to fan favorite Ken Griffey Jr., these legends have consistently put on great performances, showing baseball fans what true home run power looks like. Over the 20+ years that this competition has been televised, ratings have soared, and in 2008 it was named the year’s most highly rated basic cable program.
As this year’s All-Star break approaches, we’re marking the occasion with a list of our favorite throwback participants from the 1980s and 1990s. Feel free to comment below with any of your favorites from this era.
Ken Griffey Jr.: Griffey Jr. participated in a total of eight derbies in his career and came away with three wins, the most of any player in league history. In 1998 and 1999, Griffey Jr. won back-to-back events with 19 and 16 home runs thanks to his smooth left-handed swing. You can also never forget the backward cap Griffey Jr. donned during his at-bats.
Bo Jackson: Although we will never really know what Jackson could have done if it wasn’t for his hip injury, we can assume that he would have been one of the best professional two-sport athletes of all time. Jackson participated in the 1989 derby in Anaheim, California and hit a total of 32 home runs that season for a total of 141 in his short lived career.
Darryl Strawberry: Throughout his 17-year-career, Strawberry was one of the most feared hitters because of his home run power. He participated in two derbies during his career as a Met, and was a significant factor in his teams’ win in 1986 when he led his team with 4 home runs (The derby had a total of 10 outs at this time, as compared to the modern day 30).
Cal Ripken Jr.: Ripken is known as one of the best shortstops, hitters, and personalities to ever be a part of the game, and was the face of the Baltimore Orioles for 20 seasons. The Hall Of Famer and 19-time All-Star, participated in three derbies during his career and, most notably, led his team to a win in 1991 with his 12 bombs.
Mike Piazza: As a Hall Of Famer Piazza was one of the best offensive catchers to play the game, and hit 427 home runs over his career with five teams. He made two derby appearances, had a career batting average of .308, played above average defensively, and paved the way for modern day offensive-focused catchers in the league.
As Memorial Day approaches, it’s important to remember that it’s a time to honor some of our biggest heroes: those who have served in our military. As you thank those in your life who have served or are serving, Eastbay is proud to offer gear that gives back and supports those great men and women.
A great way to pay homage is with the special camo New Balance 3000v3. With its unmatched comfort and lightweight performance, these cleats are already a favorite among pro ballplayers and now they have an even greater purpose.
From May 3 to July 4, New Balance will donate 5% of the MSRP they receive from the camo 3000v3 cleats to Hope for the Warriors. The nonprofit organization has been serving veterans, service members, and military families since 2006 and has helped over 10,000 individuals.
You can tip your hat to our service men and women off the diamond too with New Era Stars & Stripes Memorial Day Caps. The patriotic digital camo pattern along the brim makes sure that style stands out as you support our troops while also repping your favorite baseball team.
For baseball players looking for elite performance and comfort on the diamond, New Balance has been a top option for years. And for trend-setters on and off the diamond, New Era has been a go-to brand with the hottest hats around. So a partnership between the two was sure to combine the best of both worlds and deliver a jaw-dropping product. These special, limited-edition New Balance 3000v3 cleats and New Era 39thirty hats don’t disappoint. We sat down with New Balance Baseball Product Manager Matt Nuzzo to discuss what makes this collab so special.
Eastbay: This seems like a perfect collaboration. New Balance and New Era are both so popular in the baseball world. How did this all come together?
Matt Nuzzo (MN): This is just the start of a year-long collaboration that New Balance is doing with New Era across many different sports. But we wanted to kick it off with baseball because of how genuine and authentic we both are in the sport.
Eastbay: The look of this cleat is really interesting and unique. What are some of its special features?
MN: The main story is on the reflective upper. Since both brands are big in baseball, people recognize both our logos. The reflective hits throughout the upper really help the cleat stand out on the field.
Eastbay: How did you settle on the reflective design?
MN: New Balance and New Era agreed that a crazy cleat in crazy colors wouldn’t be true to our brands. That’s not really our styles. We both love making really clean looking stuff with subtle style touches. We embody that here and focused on making something really wearable. Usually, when kids get these special products from brands, they can’t wear them in season because they are too over the top and their coach won’t let them. We want kids to be able to wear it and use this while also still getting something progressive and cool.
Eastbay: What about the outsole?
MN: The first thing that stands out is the iridescent studs. We really wanted to highlight the construction of the cleat and by making the outsole translucent, you are even able to see the top of the studs. That’s not typical in baseball, so we wanted to showcase that part and make the cleats compliment the upper.
Eastbay: The New Era hat is just as cool as the cleat. Can you break down some of its features for us as well?
MN: Just like the cleat, there are three parts of the hat that are reflective. The New Balance logo in the middle of the hat is a TPU piece and has a color-shift effect similar to the cleat studs. Underneath the lid, in the spot you would write your name, that material is the same material that’s on the saddle of the shoe. So if you take a photo underneath the hat, it’ll shine. The taping down the back of the hat features the New Balance and New Era logos and is reflective as well. So there’s a lot of cool tie-ins between the hat and cleat. The mesh on the cleat is even the mesh that New Era uses for their hats.
Super Bowl LI is almost here. This year’s matchup between the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons promises to be a great game. Fascinating questions surround the game such as what team will win, who will take home the MVP, and is Bill Belichick the greatest coach in NFL history?
We’ll give you our game predictions later, but first, let’s look back at the Super Bowl history of both squads.
Atlanta is one of 13 teams to never win a Super Bowl, and have only reached the big game once.
The Falcons fell big to the powerhouse Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XXXIII, 34-19.
Chris Chandler was Atlanta’s quarterback during their lone Super Bowl run. During that 1998 season he threw for 3,154 yards and 25 touchdowns.
The city of Atlanta’s last major sporting championship was in 1995 (Braves World Series Title).
New England Patriots
Tom Brady is tied for the most Super Bowls won as a quarterback. With all four coming as a Patriot.
New England has appeared in the Super Bowl nine times in franchise history, which is the most of any NFL team. Seven of those have been with Bill Belichick as coach.
The Patriots’ last Super Bowl win came back in 2015 when they defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24.
This is Tom Brady’s first Super Bowl appearance since the Deflategate scandal in 2015, which led to his four-game suspension earlier this season.
Atlanta and New England face off in #SB51 Sunday. Who takes home the Lombardi Trophy?!#Patriots | #RiseUp
Eastbay sports writers Jake Zipperer and Trent Tetzlaff sat down to discuss the big game and all of the surroundings.Here’s their picks breaking down coaching, quarterbacks, offense, defense, special teams, MVP, and the score prediction.
TT: Matt Ryan. He outdueled Aaron Rodgers with ease, so why can’t he take down Tom Brady as well?
JZ: Tom Brady. Been there, done that. Tom Brady is the one of the greatest of all time, and shows that in this game.
TT: Patriots. This one is self-evident for me — Bill Belichick and crew know what to do in the big game.
JZ: Patriots. Bill Belichick and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia have been here before, and have the experience to get the job done.
TT: Atlanta. Matt Ryan, Devonta Freeman, Tevin Coleman, Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu — The list goes on and on. Atlanta has the weapons needed to win it all.
JZ: Atlanta. The weapons surrounding Matt Ryan make this number-one-scoring offense a major threat.
TT: Patriots. An experienced secondary and line-backing core puts the Patriots defense ahead of the Falcons in my mind — but it’s close.
JZ: Patriots. The number-one-scoring defense shines bright on the big stage once again.
TT: Atlanta. Punt and kick returner Eric Weems comes up with some big returns to give the Falcons good field position, and kicker Matt Bryant knocks in all of his extra points and field goals.
JZ: Atlanta. Returners and the kicking game put this one in Atlanta’s favor.
TT: Julio Jones. Julio picks up where he left off against the Packers and torches the Patriots secondary for over 200 yards receiving and multiple scores.
JZ: Tom Brady. The savvy veteran who has been there before continues to play well in the big game with over 300 yards and 3 touchdowns.
TT: Falcons 34-31. The Falcons playmakers show how good they really are as they torch a normally strong Patriots secondary.
JZ: Patriots 31-21. Tom Brady continues his Super Bowl magic, and the Patriots defense slows down Matt Ryan and Julio Jones.
Join in on the Super Bowl conversation with us and drop us a comment below with your thoughts on the big game! No matter who you are rooting for Sunday, we’ve got you covered at eastbay.com with our selection of Atlanta and New England fan gear!