It is not possible that anyone has a work uniform more silly and less tied to their actual job than baseball managers and coaches.
They’re not going to play in the game.
Heck, if all goes well, they’ll never leave the dugout!
But for some reason, by the 1940’s managers had abandoned wearing “street clothes” (a phrase that I can’t say without thinking of hookers–a character flaw, I’m sure) and exchanged them for a team uniform. These are fat old men in a sport in which fat and old are not disqualifiers for participation. But even young and relatively thin Joe Girardi, manager of the New York Yankees looks stupid.
Do they do it for the tax deduction?
IRS Publication 529 says:
You can deduct the cost and upkeep of work clothes if the following two requirements are met.
- You must wear them as a condition of your employment.
- The clothes are not suitable for everyday wear.
It is not enough that you wear distinctive clothing. The clothing must be specifically required by your employer. Nor is it enough that you do not, in fact, wear your work clothes away from work. The clothing must not be suitable for taking the place of your regular clothing.
While it qualifies, I’m sure that’s not the reason. “Tradition,” Tevya says. And yet it wasn’t always thus. At a holiday gathering long ago, I was once told that, “Tradition is what you resort to when you don’t have the time or the money to do it right.” You’d think that Major League Baseball wouldn’t have that problem.
Are there no mirrors in the Manager’s Offices in these ballparks? Do they not see how ridiculous they look?
Imagine if NBA coaches had to wear their team uniforms. People would stop watching the Orlando Magic, coached by Stan Van Gundy, if not the entire league. No one wants to see that.