From SABR member Paul Lukas at Uni Watch on May 31:
Remember Friday’s post about Dodgers minor leaguers wearing letters instead of numbers during spring training? That mystery has now been solved, as reader David Highhill has come up with a 1960 article from the Spokane Daily Chronicle that cracks the code.
A few thoughts and follow-ups on this:
• The highlighted paragraph covers all the letters we’ve seen on Dodgers uniforms (plus several we haven’t seen), with one exception: X. But we’ve only seen the X on that one jersey, not being worn by anyone, so it’s possible that the X had nothing to do with spring training minor leaguers and was used for something else.
• The alpha sequence sure is odd — why start with A, B, and C and then jump to E, H, and N? I’d love to know more about how the letter assignments for each team were chosen.
• Up until now, our only look at a “T” jersey was this, which might possibly have been a 7 (although that’s unlikely, the since the player was wearing a blank cap, and our other photos indicate that blank caps correlate strongly with lettered jerseys). But now reader Matt Malinoski has provided us with a look at a T jersey that leaves no room for doubt.
• I’ve grouped all of our lettered jersey photos into this set.
Read the full article here: http://www.uni-watch.com/2011/05/31/easy-as-a-b-c-history-mystery-solved/
Originally published: June 1, 2011. Last Updated: June 1, 2011.