Under Armour is coming to Major League Baseball. The apparel company announced a 10-year partnership with MLB on Monday that will make it baseball’s official uniform supplier beginning in 2020.

“We are excited to build on our partnership with Under Armour, a powerful global brand that continues to grow exponentially, and Fanatics, an industry leader in sports licensing,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement. “Under Armour’s marketing ability and brand status are a perfect fit to showcase our players and provide an even stronger connection between our game and its young fans and players.”

The deal marks Under Armour’s first foray into supplying professional uniforms. Its marketing had largely been tied to individual players at this point, with the brand making major headway thanks to the success of its athletes in recent seasons.

Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw and San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey spearhead the group of MLB players that Under Armour sponsors. Harper’s 10-year endorsement contract is the largest in history given to a baseball player.

Fanatics, the third partner in the deal, will manage the distribution of new Under Armour products related to MLB. These new products will be available before the uniform deal kicks in. Fanatics executive chairman Michael Rubin detailed the partnership in a statement:

This partnership epitomizes our next-generation model, which brings much-needed agility to the industry, enhancing both assortment and speed to market of MLB merchandise for teams, fans and retailers. Both Fanatics and Under Armour get to do what each does best, while joining forces with an innovative and tech-savvy league to help grow the game of baseball through a pioneering new business model better suited to today’s digital economy.

Majestic Athletic has supplied MLB’s uniforms since 2005. The MLB licensing deal was the biggest contract for the apparel company, which also has partnerships with a number of overseas baseball teams. 

On Tuesday, Paul Lukas of Uni-Watch.com noted, “While the Majestic logo has appeared on MLB sleeves, the Under Armour logo will be appearing on the upper-right chest area.”

Moving to Under Armour only further cements a relationship with the company that has been growing since the turn of the century. The Baltimore-based company has supplied base-layer equipment since 2000 and became MLB’s footwear supplier in 2011.

The agreement also avoids Nike’s monopoly on uniform supply to the nation’s three largest sports. The NBA and NFL already have deals in place with Nike for their jerseys that span the foreseeable future. With Adidas landing the next NHL contract in 2015, MLB was the only possible major North American professional partner with which Under Armour could expand its brand.


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