Over the years the White Sox have become noted for many of their uniform innovations and changes. In 1960, the White Sox became the first team in the major sports to put players’ last names on jerseys.
The White Sox team colors prior to the 1970’s were primarily navy blue and red. Their logo in the 50s and 60s was the word “SOX” in Old English font, diagonally arranged. In 1964, their road uniforms changed from gray to pale blue. In 1971, the team’s primary color changed from navy blue to red, with the color of their pinstripes and caps changing to red.
In 1976 the team’s uniforms changed again. The team’s primary color changed back from red to navy. The team based their uniforms on a style worn in the early days of the franchise, with white jerseys worn at home, blue on the road. The team also had the option to wear blue or white pants with either jersey. Additionally the teams “SOX” logo was changed to a modern-looking “SOX” in a bold font, spelled across. Finally the team’s logo featured a silhouette of a batter over the words “CHICAGO WHITE SOX”, piled on top of each other.
The new uniforms also featured collars and were designed to be worn untucked – both unprecedented wrinkles. Yet by far the most unusual wrinkle was the option to wear shorts, which the White Sox did for one game against the Kansas City Royals in 1976. After being ridiculed by fans and pundits, and George Brett calling the White Sox “the sweetest team we have ever played,” the White Sox retired the shorts. The Hollywood Stars of the Pacific Coast League had tried the same concept at one time, and it was also poorly received. Apart from aesthetic issues, as a practical matter shorts are not conducive to sliding, due to the likelihood of significant abrasions.
Upon taking over the team in 1980 new owners Eddie Einhorn and Jerry Reinsdorf announced a contest where fans were invited to create new uniforms for the White Sox. The winning entry was submitted by a fan where the word “SOX” was written across the front of the jersey, in the same font as a cap, inside of a large blue stripe trimmed with red. The red and blue stripes were also on the sleeves, and the road jerseys were gray to the home whites. It was in those jerseys that the White Sox won 99 games and the AL West championship in 1983 with 99 wins, the best record in the majors.
After five years those uniforms were retired and replaced with a more basic uniform which had “White Sox” written across the front in script, with “Chicago” on the front of the road jersey. The cap logo was also changed to a cursive “C”, although the batter logo was retained for several years.
Prior to the closing of original Comiskey Park in 1990, the White Sox switched uniform styles one more time. In September, the old English “SOX” logo was restored, the pinstripes were restored, and the team’s colors changed to black and silver. With minor modifications (i.e., occasionally wearing vests, black game jerseys) the White Sox have used this style ever since.