These have been rough times for those of us who love baseball stirrups. MLB’s longtime stirrups king, Chris Paddack, has been out for nearly a year after Tommy John surgery; Mets second baseman Jeff McNeil, who won the MLB batting title last season while going stirrups-clad, has committed hosiery heresy by returning to the ranks of the pajamists this year; and pitcher Pablo Lopez, who was a committed stirrups stalwart during his years with the Marlins, has switched to regular socks now that he’s with the Twins this season.
Fortunately, a new stirrups standard-bearer has emerged. And who is this new hosiery hero, this sultan of sock? None other than Angels relief pitcher Jimmy Herget. Those are his stirrup stylings shown at the top of this page, and here’s a full view of him:
Nice, right? Even better, Herget has a herky-jerk delivery and a nice follow-through that really shows off his lower-leg stylings, as you can see in these video highlights:
Herget has been kicking around the majors for a few years, but for some reason he escaped my notice until now. As it turns out, he’s no stirrups-come-lately guy — on the contrary, he’s been a committed stirrups devotee for many years. Here’s a look back at his hosiery history, dating back to his college days:
University of South Florida
Herget played college ball at USF, where he wore stirrups:
Herget also wore stirrups throughout his minor league career, as seen in these pics from his time with (in sequence) the Round Rock Express, the Pensacola Blue Wahoos, the Louisville Bats, the Billings Mustangs, and the Daytona Tortugas:
In addition, Herget played for the U.S. team in the 2017 Futures Game — where, of course, he wore stirrups:
Herget made his big league debut with the Reds in 2019. He maintained his hosiery habits, even obtaining retro-striped stirrups for a throwback game:
Herget was eventually waived by the Reds and claimed by the Rangers, whose famous blue/red identity crisis allowed Herget to explore both sides of the team’s color equation:
Los Angeles Angels
In 2021, Herget moved to the Angels and continued wearing — well, you know:
In 2022, while still with the Angels, Herget upped the ante by adding Northwestern stripes to his stirrups — navy stripes for the team’s basic uniforms and white stripes for the City Connect uni:
That brings us up to date. A very impressive lower-leg résumé for Mr. Herget! I’m hoping to interview him soon, so stay tuned for more.
Update: I wrote this piece a few days ago and missed the news that the Angels have sent Herget down to Triple-A — dang. Here’s hoping he gets recalled soon. Godspeed, Jimmy!
(Special thanks to Phil and reader Ron Roza for bringing Herget to my attention.)