Baseball lifestyle company Baseballism has partnered with Major League Baseball for team brand … [+]
Baseballism is joining the big leagues. The Portland, Oregon-based business that features high-quality apparel products has inked a licensing agreement with Major League Baseball that will see them releasing a broad range of products with team logos on them.
Sales of the products are slated to be available online beginning on Saturday, Dec. 11th.
Financial terms were not revealed.
In an exclusive to me for Forbes, company executives said that initially, a total of nine products will be available for fans of five teams — Yankees, Red Sox, Giants, Cubs, and Cardinals – at the top of the new product pyramid. This includes items ranging from hoodies and tee-shirts to glove leather handbags, totes, and key rings. A total of 11 teams will see men’s and women’s tees, as well as some accessories. By Spring Training, the company plans to have products for all 30 clubs.
Additional products will be introduced in mid-January, including windbreakers and sweatpants. By February, spring products such as trunks and additional accessories such as glove leather money clips will be released.
“It is an honor to add an MLB x Baseballism Collaborative collection to Baseballism’s existing apparel line. Since its inception Baseballism has prided itself in being a brand authentic to the game,” said Baseballism co-founder and CEO, Travis Chock. “A brand for baseball people, by baseball people. We intend to take the same creativity and quality of the Baseballism brand and bring it to the Major League Baseball stage.”
Examples of Baseballism products with MLB licensed logos (L-R): Red Sox sweatshirt, Dodgers handbag, … [+]
The move is a significant partnership in the higher-end product space for Major League Baseball. While some brands such as Tommy Bahama have centered on a small range of products, and Fanatics handles the broad range of lower-end apparel and accessories, Baseballism is offering a full range of products as part of the rollout. And unlike Fanatics, Baseballism is exclusively baseball-centric appealing directly to just fans of the sport.
The company is coming off a rollercoaster ride due to the pandemic. Since its founding in 2013, the company has been a small business success with growing revenues. The pandemic hit just as new product was set to be released. The company had ordered $1 million in apparel around the 2020 Spring Training. With the lockdown and MLB playing to empty stadiums, the company teetered on the edge. According to Baseballism’s CFO Jonathan Loomis, 2020 revenue declined over -12% compared to 2019 despite adding two new retail locations.
Baseballism brick-and-mortar store locations are in San Francisco, Irvine, Scottsdale, Chicago, Dyersville (Field of Dreams), Atlanta, Arlington, St. Louis, and Cooperstown, NY.
The company returned to its pre-pandemic form in 2021. According to Loomis, the company has remained profitable. This year is the company’s largest and most successful year. Revenue for 2021 has increased +42% over 2020 and +26% over 2019.
Forbes is unable to independently verify company financial figures due to the private business nature of Baseballism.
The company will continue to make baseball-related products without team affiliation that has made them famous such as the “6+4+3 = 2” tee-shirt design (for the non-baseball readers, it’s a reference to a 6-4-3 double-play).
While Baseballism has thrived without having MLB licensed products, the deal that sees products available for those fans beginning on Saturday has been a process well over a year in the making. With a company that started with a bunch of guys that played baseball together in college, it may come as no surprise that the licensing deal is analogous to the path all players hope to make.
“It has always been our dream to make it to the big leagues, and although we weren’t able to do it as players, this is still a dream come true,” said Chock.