In baseball, sometimes the uniform becomes part of the player. It isn't something that announces itself. Often, it is the sort of thing that comes to light at the end of a long career. The first one that springs to mind is Babe Ruth.
In your mind, there he is, in pinstripes, with the overlapping NY on his chest. I can't imagine any more lasting image of the Babe. It's like he was a Yankee through and through. Born at home plate in New York. After all, Yankee Stadium was The House That Ruth Built. Of course, that picture is not really reflective of Ruth's career at all.
Six years in Boston at the beginning of his career, a dominant lefthander on the mound. Funny, but we rarely picture him that way. Maybe it makes sense, because Ruth rewrote the rules of hitting in those pinstripes. Odd, though, that the Red Sox spent almost a century breaking a 'curse' of a man rarely pictured in their uniform.
|This is from flipflopflyball.com, which you, being a baseball fan, should have visited many times already.|
Musial in Cardinal Red, Koufax in Dodger Blue. It is natural to us now, but maybe it would have been different in an era where changing teams came naturally when the highest bidder came calling. When baseball moved through the 1970, 80s and 90s, into collective bargaining and free agency, the thought of a player in one uniform and only one uniform became much, much rarer. Many players now seem to change teams like it's a contest to collect the most different shirts. Matt Stairs, Eric Hinske, Jim Thome, Octavio Dotel, I have no lasting impression of any logo or number on their backs.