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White Sox sign Scott Hairston to minor league deal and a chance at history

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In possibly the most White Sox move ever, the Sox add Hairston as outfield depth. It also has a chance to be a historic one.

Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The White Sox have signed outfielder Scott Hairston according to Ken Rosenthal.  Hairston, 35, didn't play baseball last season.  He last played for the Nationals in 2014 where he hit .208/.253/.299 in 61 games.

Normally, this would seem like a rather ho-hum move.  For the White Sox though, it's the most White Sox-est thing they could do this offseason.  It could also be one of the most historic ones for the White Sox.

The Hairston family was the third three generation MLB family and are the only African American one.  Sam played in the Negro Leagues with the Birmingham Black Barons and the Indianapolis Clowns before joining the White Sox in 1951.  He was signed to the Sox by John Wesley Donaldson, the first African American major league scout.  Sam only played for the Sox in 1951, and after retiring from playing in 1960, he continued scouting and coaching in the White Sox organization until he died in 1997.

Jerry Hairston Sr. debuted for the White Sox in 1973.  Outside of some time with the Pirates and in the Mexican League, Jerry Hairston continued playing with the Sox until 1989.  The White Sox actually brought Jerry back to play in September in 1988 and 1989 to accumulate the time necessary to qualify for a major league pension.  Jerry is still a member of the White Sox coaching staff.

Along with being one of four three generation baseball families, the Hairstons also are the first five player MLB family.  Four other Hairstons have played in the minor leagues.  They were the first two generation African American family when Sam's son John played for the Cubs in 1969.  There is one piece of history that has eluded the family so far.  Gus, Buddy, and Mike Bell all played for the Reds.  If Scott makes an appearance with the White Sox, they'd be the first family to have three generations play for the same team in the American League.

So, yeah, I'm cheering for the 35 year old guy to get called up.