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August 13, 2012


Scott Simkus

Interesting. And Lawson's brother was the loon who tried to form a third- integrated- major league in 1921.

Gary Ashwill

Scott, thanks for pointing that out. If the HoF/Dressed to the Nines exhibit is correct, that José Méndez photo is the FIRST photo ever of anyone in a numbered baseball uniform. I suppose this Stars of Cuba photo would be the second. The first use of numbers was supposedly by the Reading club of the Atlantic League in 1907, a team run by none other than Alfred Lawson, who had experience in Cuba. (The Atlantic League was an independent league that featured several Cuban players in 1907, mostly for the Brooklyn club IIRC.) So there seems to be a distinctly Cuban flavor to the introduction of uniform numbers into baseball...

Scott Simkus

Thanks, Kev,
I should have remembered those pictures from the 1909 Chicago City League, with the Cuban Stars wearing numbers.



Assuming this is correct, it's very close:


Scott Simkus

The men have numbers on their sleeves. Not an expert in uniforms (or much of anything, really), but is this one of the earlier examples of numbered jerseys in black/Cuban baseball? Anyone know?

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