This Is How The Chicago White Sox Got Their Name

White Sox is most certainly a fitting name for a Major League Baseball team. In terms of imagery, this name immediately recalls the thought of tall, knee-high baseball socks covered in mud and perspiration. For this reason, the name might seem a no-brainer, but a closer look at the White Sox uniform could certainly raise some questions.

As many fans have pointed out over the years, the popular Chicago baseball team known as the White Sox actually wears black socks. According to ESPN, black has been their go-to color for socks since 1951, and there have only been three instances where the White Sox actually wore white socks. Then, of course, there was that time the team wore red socks embroidered with imagery of socks that were white in what was perhaps the most perplexing uniform choice of all time.

So, what gives? If the White Sox are donning socks in just about every color except white, why do they have this name? Are these strapping sports players being ironic? Is it comedy or superstition? Nope. It turns out this name finds its roots in a jab at a rival team (via MLB).

The White Sox stole the name

In a clever but cutthroat marketing ploy, former Sox owner Charles Comiskey stole a rival team's name right out from under them. According to MLB, this incident dates back to 1901, and still feeds the flames of competition today. The aforementioned rival team represented Chicago's North side and sported the name White Stockings (no word whether they actually wore white stockings). This name theft was the first of several public upstagings meant to enthrall the fans.

At this point, you might be wondering whatever happened to the original White Stockings. Did they hike up their stolen hosiery and head home, never to be seen or heard from again? Absolutely not! Today, the team that once played as the White Stockings is none other than longtime rival team the Chicago Cubs.

As for how the name segued into the Sox from the Stockings, rumor has it that journalists began printing this shortened version of the team moniker for headline purposes. As the press consistently called the Stockings the Sox, fans followed suit, and the rest is baseball history.