The Chicago Cubs finished first in many things last year. Apparently that has translated into Major League Baseball’s jersey sales early on 2017 as well.
On Friday, the league released a list of their most popular jerseys and four of the top five were Cubs players. Chicago third baseman Kris Bryant ranked as the most popular while Cubs’ first baseman Anthony Rizzo, middle infielder Javier Baez and outfielder Kyle Schwarber saw their jersey sales rise to second, fourth and fifth-most popular in the league, respectively.
The only player that can apparently challenge those four Cubs in jersey sales is Los Angeles Dodgers’ ace Clayton Kershaw, who ranked third. The list is based upon sales of Majestic jerseys from MLBshop.com since the end of the World Series. Bryant’s jersey, though, has been the most popular since the start of the 2015 season.
In early April, ESPN discussed how baseball had a “star problem” after the company ran a poll that said only three baseball players ranked among America’s 50 favorite pro athletes and none of the three (Derek Jeter, Babe Ruth and Pete Rose) were still playing. However, it is hard to argue that baseball isn’t in a better place with its young stars at the moment. The average age of the players ranked in the top 20 was 26-and-a-half.
In addition to Baez and Schwarber making their debut on the top 20 list, Dodgers’ shortstop Corey Seager, New York Yankees’ catcher Gary Sanchez, Boston Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts and Cleveland Indians’ shortstop Francisco Lindor all made the top 20 list for the first time.
Los Angeles Angels’ outfielder Mike Trout, widely regarded as the best player in the game, is 10th on the list. Although the Cubs lead the way in the top five, baseball’s popular stars are well-balanced too as 14 different teams are represented in the top 20 most popular jerseys.