When Stephanie Ganal, whose family owns the Grandstand at the White Sox Fan Shop, saw customers lining up outside the store near the team stadium, the excitement reminded her of the team’s 2005 season. who won the World Series.
“When you have lines around the building for the product, you know the team is exciting,” Ganal said.
But fans who jump on the bandwagon who just supported the team may not want to wait to buy their gear: supply chain issues affecting everything from toilet paper to chicken wings are also affecting consumers. team clothing.
“If you’re a fan and you know you’re going to want something to represent the South Side in you, you have to grab it because it might not be there later,” Ganal said.
The team lost his first playoff game to the Houston Astros Thursday, but the teams will face off again in Houston on Friday before returning to Chicago on Sunday.
Teams typically generate more sales when they are doing well, and the Sox are no exception. At sports retailer Lids, sales of Sox hats are up 415% from 2019, and clothing is up 197%, said President Britten Maughan.
No Sox player has made it to the top 20 most popular player jerseys, based on Nike jersey sales on MLBShop.com since opening day, according to rankings released by Major League Baseball and MLB players earlier this week.
But a Sox hat is the best-selling item this year at Lids, beating usual favorites such as the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Dodgers, and players Tim Anderson, Yoan Moncada and Jose Abreu were particularly popular, Maughan said.
Even at Clark Street Sports, which normally sells at least twice as much Cubs merchandise as the Sox, the Sox have sold better than the Cubs since the squad unloaded fan favorite players Javier Baez, Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo, among others, earlier this summer, said co-owner Jason Caref.
The additional demand, along with supply chain issues, has left some items – especially replica black jerseys – in short supply.
Clark Street Sports sold their last Sox replica jersey in July and won’t receive any more until the playoffs are over, Caref said. Lids has a lot of white jerseys at home, but other styles are harder to come by, Maughan said.
On the gallery, the black jerseys are only available in certain sizes, Ganal said. Some Grandstand orders have been delayed for three months and others have been pushed back to next year.
Grandstand, Clark Street Sports and retail chain Lids all said their shelves are stocked with plenty of other merchandise, like t-shirts, hats and sweatshirts.
Still, store owners encourage customers to shop early, as items can be more difficult to replace when they run out. Companies that sent additional goods within days are now taking weeks, Caref said.
“If you see it, you should probably buy it,” he said.
The higher costs of shipping goods from overseas have also raised prices for some customers. Jersey prices haven’t gone up, but hats that typically cost $ 35 or $ 40 now cost a few dollars more, Maughan said.
The new National Bobblehead Hall of Fame and Museum Sox figures featuring Abreu, Moncado and Luis Robert, made by sporting goods maker FOCO, have escaped supply chain issues and are already in stock, though other items are experiencing delays, said Phil Sklar, the Hall of Fame and Museum CEO and co-founder.
Even though Grandstand had to work harder to keep shelves stocked this year, Ganal isn’t worried that supply chain issues will limit sales.
“I see a long term future with this team, especially with young children,” she said. “Guys deserve it, especially after last year.”