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Rawlings Sues Wilson Over Brandon Phillips's "Gold" Glove

Illustration for article titled Rawlings Sues Wilson Over Brandon Phillips's "Gold" Glove

The Gold Gloves are mostly pointless, and largely a corporate gimmick. (They're officially the Rawlings Gold Glove Awards, and have been since 1957, when they were thought up by a Rawlings sales manager for some free advertising.) They have cachet, because they're voted on by managers and coaches, and there's no other MLB-approved defensive award, but that doesn't make them any more legitimate. Remember Palmeiro winning despite only playing 28 games in the field? Remember Jeter winning thanks to his inability to get to most balls? Gold Gloves are dumb, but they're also serious fucking business.

On Friday, Rawlings filed suit against rival manufacturer Wilson, over the glove Wilson supplied to Reds 2B Brandon Phillips. It has "metallic gold-colored webbing, stitching and lettering," and those things are all copyright trademark infringement, Rawlings claims. Only they have the right to put something goldish looking on a baseball glove.

Mr. Phillips is one of Wilson's paid endorsers and is also a three-time recipient of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award. Prior to winning the 2011 Rawlings Gold Glove Award, Wilson manufactured and supplied Mr. Phillips with a Wilson branded baseball glove that did not include metallic gold indicia.

Not only is Mr. Phillips using the Infringing Wilson Glove in the field during games, warm-ups, and practices, but Defendant and Mr. Phillips also have promoted the very existence of the glove (and its connection to Wilson) through various channels and media.


Rawlings is seeking damages from Wilson, as well as an enjoinder against Wilson selling or marketing "any other baseball glove featuring gold webbing, gold-colored fabrics or leather, gold lettering, gold stitching, any other metallic gold-colored material, or any other features that are confusingly similar to the Gold Glove Marks."

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