White Sox Spill the Details on New 1983 Throwbacks

Written By:  •  Friday, January 25, 2013

Don’t let the block lettering and pant numbers confuse you, the Chicago White Sox have progressed an entire decade. While donning ’72 throwbacks last year, the southsiders have opted to wear ’83 recreations for every Sunday home game this season, paying tribute to a team that advanced to the American League Championship Series.

And when the Sox go replica, they do it right down to every possible design tweak, even including the original All-Star game patch commemorating Chicago as the home to that year’s game.

With the “SOX” lettering the lead graphic mark of the uniform, expect to see it appear, as it did in ’83, in blue on a white front panel hat with blue side and rear panels and a red bill. The white uniform features the “SOX” lettering in white embedded on a thick blue horizontal stripe set apart by thinner red stripes. But the pants have numbers. Real numbers!

“A lot of things we have done in the past, we did in a one-off, one-game type of thing,” White Sox marketing director Brooks Boyer tells SportsLogos.net. “But I think with the history we have and the cool uniforms—and some not so cool uniforms—in the past, for us we want to highlight a different uniform or era each year.”

Boyer says that newer Sox fans may not understand the significance of the ’83 team and the success they had. “They were a very popular team and this being the 30th year (anniversary), it made a lot of sense,” he says. “Year after year we may not need to have a milestone year, but may select different uniforms to wear on Sundays.”

Along with the throwback uniforms comes the matching caps and batting helmets, just as Chicago did last year. The thin red and blue stripes on the pants lead to red socks, but may not have ’83-era matching red shoes. “We haven’t made any requirements on shoes,” Boyer says. “Player comfort is the top one, but a lot wore red shoes last year with red pinstripes. Whether black, navy or red, we’ll see what ultimately gets put out there. I don’t care what color shoes they wear, they just need to hit, pitch and field the ball. They can wear ballet shoes for all I care.”

With the red shoe possibilities on the fence, the only item for sure eliminated from the pull-over look—yes, the throwbacks will feature a pullover top, not the button-down uniforms today’s players are accustomed to—are the elastic waistbands. Boyer jokes that technology has improved enough to safely eliminate the elastic.

The official unveiling of the uniforms comes this weekend during SoxFest 2013 and the only addition to the uniform is the placing a small MLB logo above the players’ names on the back of the jersey.

While the entire pullover proves intriguing, we simply can’t get past those red numbers on the pants. Where have you gone, pant numbers?

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Tim Newcomb

Tim Newcomb is a journalist based in the Pacific Northwest covering news, culture, sports design and entertainment. He has written on uniforms and sports logos for TIME Magazine, Sports Illustrated and more. You can follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb. Visit his website here.