At last we’re getting some answers to those odd looking caps the Tigers and other Major Leaguers are donning this spring.

The Association Press reports New Era is going to a synthetic polyester mix that promises to wick away moisture more efficiently. Gone will be the wool caps that have been worn by players for almost as long as the game’s been played.

Says Tigers’ pitcher Justin Verlander — who filmed a New Era commercial this off season — in the ESPN.com version of the AP story:

They look exactly the same, they breathe more and they won’t shrink. The best thing is, when it rains, the hats won’t stink like the wool ones did.

Joel Zumaya was also quoted in the story:

I didn’t know about it, and I don’t really care. I’d pitch without a hat.

I’m sure you would Joel.

Oh yeah, the version we’re seeing these days during spring training with that white accent is the batting practice version of the hat.

Look for the new hats in stores soon, retailing for $32.