Why do baseball players wear white pants? There is probably an unbreakable rule in baseball and that is that home teams wear white. While it is unclear why it is this way. On the other hand, visiting teams wear grey uniforms.
Why do baseball players wear white pants? An Unscientific Explanation
In past times, those teams that played as visitors did not have the chance to wash their uniforms at a laundry facility after the game ended. For this reason, a darker colored uniform would make the stains due to the dirt less noticeable.
It is believed that sometimes when baseball teams had two or more games as visitors in a row, they would wear those dirty uniforms they played with the last time they had a game. On the contrary, the home team would be able to use the laundry facilities so they could wear white uniforms and then clean them up after the game was over.
The first two teams to start wearing white pants were the Bears and the A’s in 1972. Currently, visitors nowadays don’t wear white pants on the road. But when they did in the past, they would also wear colorful jerseys along with them. In pretty much all of the 1975 season, the As wore white pants.
However, the team that stayed with them the most was the As. They wore white pants during games up through a great part of the 1980s. It is interesting to note that the Indians wore white pants from 1974 to 1977, the Astros wore them from 1975 to 1979 (although that’s not for sure), the San Diego Padres wore them from 1976 to 1984, the White Sox from 1976 to 1981, the Giants from 1977 to 1982, the Pirates on the 1977 and 1978 seasons, the Cubs from 1982 to 1989, and the Rangers from 1983 to 1985.
In the case of the Astros, it is rather unclear if they wore white pants on the road from 1975 to 1979 (that’s for sure) or from 1975 to 1993. The pants they used were light grey or cream.
Pants History in Baseball
A century ago, baseball pants were very inconvenient. They were wide and saggy, making it difficult for players to slide effortlessly to the next base. Also, they comprised wool making it hard for players to keep up with the game, especially when temperature exceeded 90ºF.
At first, baseball pants went up in the knew. Then, they lower to the inferior part of the legs. These long pants came to use in 1968 as they took the example of pants worn during cricket games. There was a Collective Bargaining Agreement between 2002 and 2006 that limited the use of baggy pants and making players wear pants that extended to the top of their shoes. Two main baseball pants designs include a light version (light polyester or polyester-cotton ones) useful during summer and a heavier one (heavy polyester) that is more durable in nature.
When shopping for baseball pants it is good to pay attention to the quality-price relation. Well-known brands offer top-quality pants with many desirable features. While white baseball pants for men are popular. There are also other color choices for children and women. Popular colors are white, grey, black, pinstripe design, and other solid colors.
Just as important as baseball pants were baseball belts in the beginning of baseball history. Baseball pants need to be fastened in such a way that they won’t drop down, especially, in the faster playing times such as sliding to the next base or when trying to catch a ball. In the middle of the 1900s, teams came up with their own signature belts.
However, in 1970, belts were eliminated. Instead of them, elasticized pants were put into their place. It wasn’t until the 1990s, that belts were reintroduced into the game.
Why do baseball players wear white pants? For the simple reason that those ones differentiate them from their grey counterparts which are usually worn by visitor teams. Many teams in US baseball history have been known to wear white pants for many seasons.