New ESPN column today — here’s the link.
Meanwhile: Ladies and gentlemen, there’s a new hosiery hero in our midst. That would be Brian Tallet of the Blue Jays, who on Tuesday night earned himself a lifetime Uni Watch exemption by wearing some picture-perfect stirrups. Here’s a closer look — note the bloused cuffs (which didn’t drape exactly right, but I blame that on the polyester, not on Tallet). Very, very nice.
Bill Blevins, who provided the screen-grabs, reports that Yankees TV announcers Michael Kay, Al Leiter, and Ken Singleton “spent over a minute talking about the fact that Tallet wore actual stirrups in the proper manner. The talk was entirely pro-stirrup, and I did not detect irony in their tone.” Apparently they also showed a quick video clip of Leiter wearing stirrups back in his Blue Jays days (although that couldn’t have been too exciting, since Leiter’s stirrups in those days were exceedingly uninspired). Unfortunately, the MLB.TV game video is from the Toronto broadcast, where the announcers didn’t even mention Tallet’s fine example.
Tallet’s an interesting case. In his minor league days, he sometimes wore stirrups and faux stirrups (nice cuff level, despite the bogus hose). I’ve been unable to find pics from his 2002 and 2003 cups of coffee with the Indians, he was definitely long-pantsed during his two Cleveland appearances in 2005. Then he caused a stir at the beginning of this season — his first with Toronto — by showing some stirrup, which upon closer inspection turned out to be of the faux variety. But as the season progressed, he shifted to full-fledged pajama mode, and as recently as two weeks ago he appeared to be a lost cause. Who’da thunk he’d end up with the season’s best sock stylings so far?
About yesterday’s post: As you may have seen, I ended up taking down yesterday’s interview with Joe Hilseberg, at his request. Many of you have asked why, but the specifics are private. All that matters is that Joe is a stand-up guy who had good reason to make the request, so I honored it. I want to make it clear that there was no pressure put on me by any outside parties, nor was this a case of a source coming back to me and saying, “Oh shit, I didn’t think you’d print that!” This was simply a friend of the site ending up in a tough spot through no fault of his own, so I helped him get out of it. End of story.
No, I can’t tell you more, and no, I can’t e-mail you a transcript of the interview, so please don’t ask. Let’s move on, shall we?
Uni Watch News Ticker: With Georgia Tech wearing throwbacks tonight, I’ll be appearing at 6pm eastern on the school’s flagship station, WQXI 790. I’m told we’ll be discussing the topic of throwbacks in general. … Check out this totally rulin’ 1959 Wilson advertising poster that I scored yesterday on eBay. I’ll post better photos of it when I get the actual item from the seller. … Big, big kudos to Andrew Shieh, who came up with a photo of last weekend’s Navy placekicker jersey typo. … Good catch by Jonathon Binet, who notes that the sleeve patches worn by many of the Nationals are curling and puckering. Additional views here, here, here, here, and here. … In yet another great catch, Dustin Ray has noticed that MLB umpires’ “EG” memorial patch for Eric Gregg is disappearing from many umps’ sleeves, often leaving behind a sticky residue. … Speaking of memorials, this obituary for longtime MLB exec Syd Thrift mentions that he’s the one who got underbills changed from green to gray (or so Thrift always claimed — some other sources dispute this). … On Monday I mentioned that many NFL players’ waistband towels now feature the Wilson wordmark (instead of the Wilson “W,” as had been the case for the past several years). That prompted the following note from a source at Wilson: “Good catch on the towels. We did change to the script Wilson logo this year, to match our current branding (I know…logo creep). If someone’s still wearing the ‘W,’ I assume it’s because the team had old inventory and is just using them up. Each team receives 528 towels per year and a lot of the northern teams seem to go through their allotment slower than southern and/or dome teams.” … While he was at it, the Wilson sourced added this: “If you look closely this year, you’ll see that NFL game balls have the team names stamped on them, below the NFL shield panel. In the past, the home team supplied the balls for both teams; this year, each team will supply their own footballs when they are on offense (similar to college).” … The Raptors have finally confirmed what everyone already knew: no more purple. … Here’s something you don’t often see anymore: the old ABC helmet logo, as worn on Sept. 9th by Ken Huckaby. … The Cardinals retired Bruce Sutter’s No. 42 on Monday night — an odd move, since 42 was already retired for Jackie Robinson. … In case you missed it in yesterday’s Comments section: With the Falcons having signed Morten Andersen Tuesday, lots of readers are wondering if the ageless kicker — who hasn’t played in the NFL since 2004 — will wear his old-school Dungard facemask. … Nice piece here making fun of the Vikings’ unis (with thanks to Jennifer Hayden). … Lots of negative reader reaction yesterday to the new U.S. cycling uniform, and it’s easy to see why. … Cork Gaines notes that there was some serious logo creep discussion in yesterday’s Doonesbury (where the item being discussed for adornment is a prosthetic leg). … Browns WR Josh Cribbs is inviting a fine by wearing an unapproved memorial tribute to a recently deceased teacher (thanks to Dave Sterling for the tip). … Webmaster John Ekdahl has added several new features to the Comments section, including the use of gravatars. For details on that, go to yesterday’s Comments and scroll down to Nos. 139 and 144.