Now this is what you could call getting really “up close and personal” with the Toronto Blue Jays! Third baseman Brett Lawrie was on hand at Victoria Secret in the Eaton Center yesterday to help launch the new line of Blue Jays merchandise in collaboration with the sexy underwear giant.
More from the Toronto Star
Victoria’s Secret launches Blue Jays collection
Ever wanted to get closer to your favourite baseball team? Desired a more intimate connection?
Lucky for you, Victoria’s Secret’s relentless brand marketers know there are no boundaries to the love between a baseball fan and their team.
Launched in 2010, Victoria Secret’s PINK MLB collection now includes all 30 major-league clubs. The Blue Jays apparel, which follows the same formatted design and style as the 29 other teams, includes two types of underwear (one leopard print), two styles of T-shirt, “boyfriend” and flared sweatpants, and an adjustable ball cap.
Brett Lawrie, the Jays’ 22-year-old bachelor third baseman, naturally volunteered to help celebrate the launch of the new line at the Eaton Centre Monday with Victoria’s Secret model Elsa Hosk.
With underwear sporting the slogan “Take Me Home” — a cheeky play on “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” — and shirts adorned with “Three Strikes You’re Out,” the collection is far from the Blue Jays official merchandise, which for women includes feminine-cut T-shirts, but not jerseys, and other items in an inordinate amount of pastel.
A handful of baseball-loving women polled by The Star found the collection a definite step-up from what’s at the Blue Jays’ official team store — where simply turning something pink is supposed to make it feminine-friendly — but they still found a disappointing lack of options.
“I think it’s a good start,” said Alex Bilton, a 40-year-old diehard Jays fan. “I’d like to see it broadened a little bit. It’s basically panties and lounge wear and there’s not much else.”
Bilton said since baseball is a summer game she would like to see more summery clothing — “maybe some shorts, little tank tops, that kind of thing.”
While wearing your team’s underwear may be an unconventional expression of boosterism, “it’s still something fun that you can do on game day,” Bilton said.
Other female sports fans say they find it hard enough to be taken seriously without being told they should support their team by wearing lacy underwear emblazoned with the words “Take Me Home.”
“Victoria’s Secret’s mandate is obviously to make women feel sexy and look sexy to men and I’m okay with that,” said Joanna Cornish, a 30-year-old Jays fan who blogs about the team at humandchuck.com.
But Cornish said she worries the clothing sends the wrong message to men about female sports fans, “where they think that women are just there because they find the players cute, or it’s just about being sexy, when some women are actually very knowledgeable about sports beyond just the fact that it’s a place to be to look cute.”
As with other women the Star spoke to, Cornish would prefer if the team capitalized on the “gorgeous” new logo and uniforms, but tailored them specifically for women.
“If they made a genuine Jays jersey cut and fit for a woman’s body it would go over a lot better than making it pink, you know? The team’s not pink.”
Melissa Liznick, a 26-year-old Jays fan who blogs at realrealjays.mlblogs.com, said she would wear the Blue Jays underwear, but like the others was disappointed with the lack of selection.
“I’m a little disappointed there’s no Joe Carter thong.”