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Thursday, July 29, 2010

Brian Wilson's Orange Shoes, and Baseball's Worst Fashion Faux-Pas -- Ever

Posted By on Thu, Jul 29, 2010 at 6:15 AM

Brian -- you shouldn't have!
  • Brian -- you shouldn't have!
Yesterday, San Francisco Giants pitcher Brian Wilson -- a man with about three pounds worth of tattoo ink coursing through his veins and a haircut befitting a Blink-182 roadie -- came under fire from the league office. The objection: Wilson's traffic cone-orange shoes.

Wilson was dinged $1,000 for his sartorial transgression. In the world of anal enforcement of professional athletes' adherence to uniformity, that's a drop in the bucket: Had Wilson been a football player donning inappropriate footwear during the Super Bowl, he'd have been out $100,000. But Wilson's escapade did remind us of some of baseball's worst fashion tragedies:

click to enlarge Avert thine eyes!
  • Avert thine eyes!
In 1919, the Chicago White Sox -- who would go on to famously throw the World Series vs. Cincinnati -- were so badly compensated by owner Charlie Comiskey that they were responsible for washing their own uniforms

n 1934, St. Louis Cardinals pitchers Dizzy and Paul Dean went "on strike" protesting Paul's paltry $3,000 salary. Dizzy shredded his home uniform in anger -- and, when photographers complained that they missed the action, he shredded his road uniform, too.

In 1938
, temperamental Cleveland pitcher Johnny Allen is told to cut off part of his dangling sleeve, which the umpire found distracting. Allen instead has a tantrum, and walks out of the game. He is fined $250 by the team -- and his ratty shirt is now preserved in the Hall of Fame, so future generations can ponder his odd behavior and Bill Belichick-like sartorial sense.

In 1948, Adonis-like Cincinnati Red Ted Kluszewski cuts the constricting sleeves off of his uniform. The resultant look was unsettling in the Midwest of the 1940s and '50s. But in the present-day Castro district it would have gone over swimmingly.

In 1959, Chicago White Sox outfielder Al Smith is famously doused with beer by his home fans during a World Series game; the moment is immortalized in one of the greatest photographs of all-time.

In 1975 ... Houston, we have a problem.

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About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" was a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly from 2007 to 2015. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers.


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