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Happy Shorts Anniversary, Chicago White Sox

Aug 8, 2012, 1:00 PM EDT

I’m reminded by Dan Epstein — author of one of the best baseball books I’ve ever read — that today is the 36th anniversary of the Chicago White Sox doing this in the first game of a doubleheader against the Kansas City Royals:

source:

We all deride the fashion sense involved, but I still have no idea how anyone was supposed to slide in those things.

Backstory on the shorts here.

  1. kkolchak - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:08 PM

    Of all the legendary Bill Veeck stunts, this one ranking somewhere between Eddie Gaedel, the midget batter, and Disco Demolition Night for sheer awesome awfulness.

    Baseball was a lot more fun when it was being run by the likes of Veeck and Charlie Finley. :D

    • theawesomersfranchise - Aug 8, 2012 at 5:28 PM

      Ball 3 take your base

  2. steveohho - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:13 PM

    Mercy!

    • nightman13 - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:49 PM

      Hawk = poop

  3. cur68 - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:20 PM

    I had no knowledge of this “shorts day” phenomenon of which you post. None whatsoever. In fact, the sight of that guy, an MLB player (Bucky Friggin Dent, no less), in shorts during an actual ball game at the Big League level has sprained my brain. I refuse to believe this really happened.

    • kkolchak - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:41 PM

      I was a big White Sox fan growing up and have vivid memories of both this incident and Disco Demolition Night. Veeck was broke and the Sox weren’t any good, but they were at least entertaining.

      • deepstblu - Aug 8, 2012 at 7:06 PM

        Went to Opening Day at Comiskey in 1978. Lots of entertainment, including what sounded like an entire section in the right field upper deck chanting “BOSTON SUCKS” an hour before game time; the fireworks crew blowing up enough stuff at the end of pregame to delay the first pitch while the smoke cleared (there had been some hooha over the Sox possibly not getting fireworks permits for the season–Veeck would have cut off his good leg before he’d’ve let that happen); the old gray-haired guy sitting near me who seemed to know half the crowd and was making bets with a good proportion of them; the guy who decided to chug a whole tray of beers at the front of the bleachers and drop the cups on the warning track (he only got to three before the guy holding the tray for him decided to dump the other nine over the chugger’s head. Would they sell you a dozen beers at a ballpark today? Is your credit limit high enough to pay for them?). And, oh yes, there was baseball. Memory tells me that White Sox free agent signee Ron Blomberg drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the 9th, but research disagrees; Blomberg homered to tie it, and three batters later Wayne Nordhagen drove in Chet Lemon for the win. And there was much singing of the Na Na Hey Hey song in the ‘L’ station, as the ladies of the neighborhood came up from the platform with faces that said, Oh Lord, the crazy people are back again.

  4. planck16 - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:27 PM

    @ CRAIG

    ATTENTION CRAIG:

    I need your help. I am a Die-Hard Braves fan who now lives just outside of Philly. I attended the Braves/Phils game last night where the Bravos were blanked 3-0.

    My buddy (typical Phillie fan) keeps suggesting that the Braves will not make the Playoffs because our 7-9 guys are too weak. Which is crazy for several reasons: 1) The Pitcher hitting 9th 2) The 7-8 hitters have also been looked at as a bonus more than a contributor, hence your defense specialists like Catcher and SS usually hit there. 3) Dan Uggla has been hitting 7th and he was an All-Star. Name another All-Star that currently hits 7th?

    So that brought me to thinking, who in the NL has the best 7-8 hitters? And then, who was the best 7-8 hitters of all time? I am sure it is some 1930s Yankee Team!

    Thanks!

    Daniel

    • Gardenhire's Cat - Aug 8, 2012 at 2:26 PM

      All Time: Jesse Katsopolis and Joey Gladstone. They played in San Francisco in the late 80’s to the mid-90’s

  5. muir6 - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:28 PM

    Bucky Dent nice

    • wendell7 - Aug 9, 2012 at 7:43 AM

      Bucky Bleepin’ Dent

  6. mybrunoblog - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:34 PM

    The bright orange baseball was more groundbreaking.

    • kkolchak - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:47 PM

      But it wasn’t nearly as ball breaking. :D

  7. nolanwiffle - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:35 PM

    Unless I’m mistaken, I believe the jersey actually had a gigantic blue, dress shirt collar. Thereby making the jersey even more ridiculous than the shorts, in my opinion.

    • kkolchak - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      It did, and it was. That abomination of a uni (even with long pants) replaced the White Sox’s classic red pinstripes from the all-too-brief Dick Allen era for the bicentenial year of 1976. The team then farted around with a couple of other slightly less crappy styles until they changed over to the cool Good Guys Wear Black look they sport now when the new Comiskey Park opened in 1991.

      • deepstblu - Aug 8, 2012 at 6:39 PM

        There was that one early ’80s design with the wide band…reminded me of a laundry detergent carton (“Fight stains, with NEW Instant SOX!”) Not real flattering on guys like Greg Luzinski.

  8. sdelmonte - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:38 PM

    36 years…man, I feel old.

    • kkolchak - Aug 8, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      Me too.

  9. yahmule - Aug 8, 2012 at 2:42 PM

    I seem to remember Chet Lemon sliding feet first while wearing those shorts, even though he said he would go head first to save his thighs.

    http://www.freewebs.com/karamaxjoe/thewhitesoxshorts.htm

  10. freddyk34608 - Aug 8, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Is he hitting in beach sand?

  11. proudliberal85392 - Aug 9, 2012 at 11:51 AM

    We need more Bill Veecks.

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