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Today in White Sox History: February 27

Dick Allen becomes the first South Sider to be the highest-paid player in baseball.

Sports Contributor Archive 2020
Mere days before this photo was taken, Dick Allen became the highest-paid player in baseball.
Ron Vesely/Getty Images

1973

Coming off of his 1972 MVP season, Dick Allen signs a three-year, $750,000 contract with the White Sox, making him the highest-paid player in baseball. While contract details for early baseball are sketchy, this is believed to be the first time a White Sox player has been the highest-paid in the game.

Allen earned his deal by leading the AL in homers (37), RBIs (113), on-base percentage (.420), slugging percentage (.603) and OPS (1.023).

It would be 24 years before the White Sox would boast the highest-paid player in the game again, when Albert Belle signed a deal that paid him $11 million for the 1997 season.


2008

In their first game of spring training, the White Sox wear Northern Illinois University baseball caps, honoring the victims of the shooting rampage on the school’s campus earlier in February. The game-worn, autographed hats were later auctioned off to build a scholarship fund set up in memory of the five students who were killed.