Silver Jeans is partnering with Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista on the Joey Series, a new limited-edition denim collection for fall.

Although the family-owned Canada-based brand has worked with celebrities on licensing deals in the past, this is its first time collaborating with an athlete on a men’s capsule collection. Owner Michael Silver said the relationship with Bautista started organically after a business friend who represents athletes suggested they work together.

This story first appeared in the March 12, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

“They invited me to a baseball game and he was absolutely not what I expected. He has a keen eye for fashion and wanted to get in on the fashion industry, but he didn’t want to put his name on just anything,” said Silver.

Named after Bautista’s moniker, Joey Bats, the Joey Series includes two styles: the Eddie, a relaxed-fit jean with a tapered leg, and the Gordie, a loose-fit, straight-leg jean. The Dominican player worked with the design team on subtle details that range from baseball-like stitching on back pockets and lead stitching on watch pockets to screen prints of old baseball cards on pocket linings and cross bat embroidery on waistbands. The jeans will be numbered and will retail for about $5 above Silver’s regular collection, which starts at $80 and goes up to $100.

In-store displays will highlight Bautista, who will also participate in fan engagement events, and Silver’s “Work Hard. Be Great” digital and social media campaign.

“Stepping outside of my normal routine and getting to see some of my personal creativity come to life like this was fantastic,” Bautista said. “I’m looking forward to more collaborative projects to come.”

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