From a style standpoint, America’s Pastime has long been a celebration of, well, past times. Whether it be throwback jerseys or wool caps penetrating pop culture from a fashion sense, it’s typically more tradition and homage than fresh faces or innovation.
Carlos Correa has other ideas.
Recently joining adidas after an AL Rookie of the Year season in Nike, the Houston Astros star on the rise has big ideas about elevating the style and swagger associated with baseball both on and off the field. As expected, Correa will be the face and feet of the adidas Baseball Boost Icon 1 cleat. As not expected, he’s looking to take Base Kicks into KOC territory by becoming the game’s first ‘cleathead’ via a variety of PEs in action as well as some off-genre heat while in practice and in the limelight. Will this be a big hit for H-Town and the Three Stripes? We caught up with Correa to find out.
Nice Kicks: Going back before the adidas deal, when did your interest in sneakers first start and how has it changed over the years?
Carlos Correa: I’ve always been interested in sneakers, the only difference is before I couldn’t afford them. Eventually I got drafted and was able to buy some sneakers. I was with Nike at that point, then I made the big switch to the adidas family and got more into it because obviously right now adidas is coming big with sneakers. They’ve got the Yeezys, the NMDs, the Ultra Boosts, all that nice stuff that everybody loves. You can tell when you walk into the mall because everybody is wearing adidas. When I made that transition, I saw that they had a brand in both sports and culture and I felt like I could be a part of that and represent them the right way.
Nice Kicks: You were obviously courted by many brands when signing an endorsement deal, what made adidas stand out?
Carlos Correa: They have nice stuff on the field, but they have even better stuff off the field. For me it’s all about looking good on the field and off as well. I feel like shoes support your body language when you’re on the field. When you’ve got the best shoes in the ballpark your body language will [reflect that]. You’re going to feel good and when you feel good you’re going to go out there and play good. I want to have the best spikes out on the field and with adidas I feel like I can do that easily.
Nice Kicks: Tell us about the “cleathead” concept and how it came about.
Carlos Correa: The “cleathead” concept is wearing cleats that standout. I want fans that are sitting in the righthand field upper deck to see my cleats when I’m playing shortstop. I want people to see my cleats from a long distance because they’re flashy, they’re nice, they’re swaggy — I want to be able to bring that to the game. I want to bring better cleats, more style, and more swag to the game. That’s why I’m working with the adidas family to accomplish that.
Nice Kicks: What will be your role in picking out colorways throughout the season?
Carlos Correa: That’s something I’m working with the adidas family on that you’ll be able to see throughout the year. We’re doing something very cool for Opening Day in New York and then throughout the season we’re going to bring out some different cleats and nice stuff that people will really like and enjoy. The fans always see you on the field to put on a show, but at the end of the day if people are there you might as well make it worth their while and make them look at something nice every time you step on the field. I don’t think it will be a different cleat every game, but there will be different cleats throughout the year and new stuff almost every week. I don’t wear spikes for batting practice — I wear turf and tennis shoes — so I’ll be able to wear everything adidas has coming out with a little more flash and a little more swag to it.
Nice Kicks: Off the field, what’s been in your rotation as of late?
Carlos Correa: I’ve been wearing some D Rose’s in different colorways and some D Lillard’s, too. But you don’t want to show everything at Spring Training. [Laughs] You want to save the best for the regular season, right? We’re doing that. We’re going to have the best come throughout the season. It’s going to be fun.
Nice Kicks: When looking at the current adidas roster, is there any athlete or artist whose line you really admire or would want to model your line after?
Carlos Correa: Obviously I want to have my own line with adidas, but I appreciate all the lines. Kanye has a great line, he has the most popular shoes out there. D Rose and Lillard have some nice shoes, Pharrell has nice stuff with the Superstars. But I want to create my own line and when people start seeing me with the nice shoes on the field eventually they’ll start seeing some Carlos Correa shoes out there.
Nice Kicks: What’s more exciting to you: the prospect of fans wearing shoes attached to your name for style or wearing your cleats in game for baseball?
Carlos Correa: I feel like both is what we’re working towards. We want people to wear my cleats on field, but we don’t want to get stuck there. You can’t wear cleats to go to the mall, to go to church or to go a party, so we want to make shoes that extend on the lifestyle side as well.
Nice Kicks: What can fans expect this season on and off the field from Carlos Correa?
Carlos Correa: On the field, the main goal is to win a championship. Off the field, I’m going to be involved in a lot of stuff. Obviously we’ve talked about the shoes and the spikes, but I want to be involved in the community to help different charities. We’re hosting a charity when I get back to Houston where we’ll give back to kids that don’t have parents and we’re working with Texas A&M Coach Tillman on that. I want to be involved with the community in Houston in a big way because for me it’s not all about being a great baseball player it’s about being a great citizen and human being as well.