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MLB Hosiery Hero Makes Triumphant Return to the Mound

Back in May of 2022, I did a really fun interview with Twins pitcher Chris Paddack, who was MLB’s foremost exemplar of stirrup supremacy. We talked about how he started wearing stirrups, how he orders custom designs from Twin City Knitting, and so on. It was one of the most enjoyable interviews I’ve ever conducted.

Three days after that interview was published, Paddack blew out his arm and had to have Tommy John surgery (for the second time in his career, ugh). He missed the rest of last season, and it wasn’t clear if he’d even be able to pitch again this season. But after a long rehab and a few minor league tune-up appearances, he finally made it back to the bigs last night. And as you can see at the top of this page, his lower-leg stylings looked as good as ever.

Here are some additional views:

Mmmm, tasty. My only quibble is that Paddack chose to wear a stirrup design that included red on a night when the team’s uniform didn’t include any red. If you look closely, you can see that his stirrups even had red feather-edging on the openings:

Of course, this particular Twins uniform didn’t debut until this season, and all their other uniforms do include at least a bit of red, so maybe Paddack — who was only called back up to the team a couple of days ago — didn’t have time to order a new set of ’rups to go with this uni, and instead he just grabbed a red-trimmed pair from last year. In any case, I’m prepared to cut him a bit of slack, especially considering what he’s been through. (Can you imagine having to rehab from Tommy John twice by age 27?)

Paddack has always been a starting pitcher, but the Twins plan to use him in the bullpen for now. Last night he entered the game in the sixth inning, allowed a base hit on his first pitch — and then struck out the next three hitters. Welcome back, buddy.

Comments (13)

    I have another theory regarding the red stripe (despite the lack of red anywhere else on the uni) — his shoes have a good chunk of red, so it pulls in the red from the shoes (and is therefore a conscious choice).

    In fact the red outline around the stirrup holes rather nicely matches the thin red soutache on the shoe opening.

    I like the red in the stirrups. Adds some needed color to the otherwise bland uniform.

    Yes! If everyone on the team wore those stirrups, then the UNIFORM would have some red, which a Twins uniform should have.

    “Three days after that interview was published, Paddack blew out his arm and had to have Tommy John surgery”

    – I’ve heard of the SI curse, but do we now have the Uni Watch curse as well?

    Major points for the stirrups. But major deductions for the white shoes (after Labor Day, no less) and the awful turquoise mitt. And it’s not his fault, but those uniforms as a whole look bush league.

    White shoes wreck the look. But my peeve is long pants players who match white shoes to white pants and gray shoes to gray pants. They look like they’re wearing footie pajamas.

    I was glad to be there last night to welcome him and his stirrups back to the ballpark! And noting in my Eephus League scorebook after his name: HS/s. Not just HS for high socks, but the /s for true stirrups!

    I was at the game last night — it was a smaller crowd when he came out (late game, wide scoring margin, precip earlier, a Tuesday evening), but fans were really cheering him on to get outs. And, of course, before I even noticed it was Paddack coming into the game, I noticed the stirrups. :-)

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