By Paul Lukas
Thursday is Independence Day, which means MLB teams will once again be wearing stars-and-stripes caps. You can see this year’s crop of caps here.
The use of flag-based cap imagery on July 4 began during the 2002 season as a response to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Some fans view the caps as a worthy gesture of patriotism; others see them as just another way for MLB to sell more merchandise (although it’s worth noting that MLB has donated proceeds from the cap sales to Welcome Back Veterans since 2008).
Either way, the cap designs have steadily evolved over the past dozen years. Here’s a year-by-year look at that evolution: