The Blue Jays home run jacket remains MLB’s hottest accessory

Last year, the Toronto Blue Jays started a hot trend. It’s rare for a professional baseball team to turn heads, but the team did just that by unveiling their beloved “home run jacket.”

The move took on a life of its own in 2021, and since the Jays led MLB with 262 homers last year, the jacket has been given a workout. The celebration was so well received by players and fans that the team opted to bring back the tradition for the 2022 campaign.

The team’s bilingual interpreter, Hector Lebron, made the custom blazer. He enlisted a friend of his to design a personalized jacket representing the countries of origin of the players, coaches and staff.

After the home run itself, watching the Blue Jays players strut around the dugout as if they were walking on the podium was one of the most entertaining aspects of the home run jacket tradition.

The inscription “La Gente Del Barrio” is engraved on the back, which means “the people of the neighborhood”. For the 2022 season, they have added new countries to the back of the jacket: Ukraine, Pakistan, India, Peru, Israel, Greece and Argentina.

Lebron told Daily Hive via email that the player who hits a home run gets the most excitement parrying the jacket.

Although you hardly know it, considering teammates like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. can barely wait to grab the jacket and stand atop the dugout to congratulate the homerun hitter.

“It’s almost more fun praising your teammate than putting it down,” former Blue Jay Robbie Ray said in the video below.

Last season, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was the first-ever Blue Jay to wear the blazer after a homerun, knocking out the Green Monster at Fenway Park on July 29, 2021.

On special occasions, even starting pitchers can wear the blue jacket. Earlier this year, Jose Berrios graced the suit after a stellar eight-inning performance against the Detroit Tigers.

Guerrero leads the team in home runs this year, but Lebron noted that Santiago Espinal is most proud to wear the jacket when he goes on the court. Espinal only went deep twice last season, so his five home runs in 2022 have already surpassed his career high.

After leading all teams with 30 home runs in April, the Blue Jays lost their stride a bit in May, hitting 21 home runs and slipping to 24th in team home runs. But they bounced back in June, taking third place behind the Yankees and Braves this month in the long-ball department.

The Blue Jays aren’t the only Major League Baseball team to have some kind of home run prop, but theirs is arguably the most fashionable. This year, the Baltimore Orioles have added a home run string to their repertoire, and the Los Angeles Angels have a home run cowboy hat.

Now in its second year, the Toronto home run jacket is the symbol of the multicultural clubhouse of the Blue Jays, but also of their fans. One piece of clothing has brought together a team and a fan base over the past year.

Lebron was surprised and happy to see the public reaction to the blue jacket. “This is all for the city, this is for the country,” Lebron said. “We are all the Barrio.”