Color Me Pink – I Mean Sedona Red

The Diamondbacks unveiled their new color scheme and merchandise last night at an invitation only event at the Valley Ho Hotel and resort. You were able to buy merchandise on-line last night or beginning this morning it would be available at team shop valley locations. I had contemplated buying a new hat online. Trina questioned the need for yet another Diamondbacks hat so I had to explain to her that this was strictly for evaluation purposes. That and I wanted to conduct my own market research by seeing how many people would comment on the new colors if a fan were to wear the merchandise around town. By now she has learned that I seem to be able to justify just about anything. In the end all she asked was that I try to contain myself since Christmas was coming and the kids needed something to get me. After all, my Christmas wish list consisted pretty much entirely of items that began with “Arizona Diamondbacks –“, followed by some type of merchandise description. So, given the green light to go and check out the new Sedona red gear I headed down to the team shop.

Trina wasn’t completely trusting in my abilities to contain my enthusiasm so she decided that I could not go unsupervised. She was a little sneaky about how she did it too. She suggested that I take my daughter Mallorie with me so that I could utilize the HOV lane on the freeway thereby ensuring that I would get to the team shop in time for their opening. It sounded like a good idea and I didn’t even think about the fact that Mallorie was actually a spy for her mother. We left the house with enough lead time to be at Chase Field by 9 AM. Unfortunately interstate traffic was unaware of the plans and an accident caused delays making us arrive at the field 10 minutes after opening. I was sure that this would cause severe problems since I anticipated that there would be a line of fans outside fighting to get in and buy the new merchandise. Obviously the Diamondbacks had anticipated the same thing as they had an area roped off for crowd control and had added a lot of staff in the team shop to help the crowd find what they were looking for. As we approached the stadium I didn’t see the crowd. Instead there were roped areas of empty space. As we walked to the entrance there was one fan leaving the shop with a bag containing a new hat and jersey. Well the Diamondbacks plan for crowd control must have worked and they got all of the shoppers inside the store before we arrived. It would surely be a madhouse of people trying to get their hands on the new merchandise. I took a deep breath and entered the shop. It looked like the Boston massacre in there as we were greeted by a sea of red and black racks filled with Sedona red, Sonoran sand, and black shirts and hats. What was missing though were the customers. Besides Mallorie and I there was 1 other shopper and he had come in to exchange a hat. Customers were outnumbered by team shop employees 10 to 1. You could not take 3 steps without someone from the team shop asking if you needed help. I felt like a baton at a track relay. I had to assure each employee that I thought I was capable of finding a hat given the mountains of merchandise that was in front of me. We wandered around the store looking at each item. They had the home and away jerseys as well as alternate jersey 1 and alternate jersey 2. There was the official hat and the alternate hat. We found 5 or 6 different types of t-shirts in either black or Sedona red. They had a baseball and a mini-bat with the new font style and one hooded sweatshirt. It felt great being back at Chase Field and I didn’t want to leave. I took my time looking and re-looking at each item just to drag out the time. We were in the store for almost 45 minutes where I bought an official Sedona red hat and a black T-shirt with the new logo. During our stay two ladies came in doubling the number of customers in the store. The turn out was pretty depressing considering such a drastic change. I’ll hold off judgment before deciding if this is a message as to how well the color change resonates with the diehard fans.

When we got home I took the hat and sat it on the table and analyzed every inch. New Era is again messing with the sizing so 7 1/8 does not necessarily mean 7 1/8. I found variations up to ¼ inch in the ones I tried on. I looked closely at the new snake logo then retrieved the black road hat the Diamondbacks had worn previously so I could compare the two side by side. The changes are definite but I wouldn’t say better. The snake logo on the new hat is raised and more 3 dimensional than that on the previous hat but with that you lose a lot of the detail. As the kids came by each of them gave their opinion as well. It was unanimous that everyone liked the old snake logo better. They all agree that the new snake looks more realistic but just doesn’t look right raised on the hat.

Since the color unveiling there have been many comments that the color scheme is the same as Houston. Putting the two side by side that is definitely not the case. Houston’s colors are much more orange than the Diamondbacks. In fact my daughter Whitney put it best. Houston’s colors look like the color of the bricks on a school. The Diamondbacks Sedona is more like a really dark pink. Oh great just what I wanted was a new color scheme where the primary color is a pink. She’s right though, looking up the Pantone number it does fall in the pink family rather than the orange. None of the kids like the new font typeface being used on the uniforms or logos. I kind of liked it but I was alone in that. So from my unofficial poll conducted by interviewing the family of a diehard fan the new color scheme was met with mediocre excitement. Everyone liked the black hat even with the A being red. The Sedona hat got a thumbs down due to being pink with a raised snake. An interesting side note, the team shop lists the Sedona red hat color as “brick”, the same color as the one in the Houston team shop. The font typeface was also given a thumbs down due to looking too informal or not professional enough. Maybe this will grow on everyone with time.

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