Big Jim Thome: Fashion Icon

Big Jim Thome: Fashion Icon

When Hunter Pence came over from the Houston Astros, he brought along some sweet high pants and stirrups to go with his hustle and awkward style of play.

The Inquirer's Michael Vitez made the wise decision to take Pence's pants as a cue to investigate the high-sock/no-sock presence on the Phillies club. It's an enlightening read, sharing that some players like Roy Oswalt wear the high socks because the old school vibe mimics his game. Ryan Howard wears long pants for comfort. Not surprisingly, Jimmy Rollins wants to look good on the diamond.

But one of my favorite parts was when Vitez touches on the old Phillies stirrups that featured the Liberty Bell on them. ESPN uniform expert Paul Lukas says that one former Phillie rocked said stirrup in the most iconic baseball fashion possible known as "blousing."

From the Inquirer piece:

Thome wears his pants mid-calf, what Lukas believes is the iconic baseball image - not too high, not too low.

Furthermore, Lukas says, Thome is one of the best and last practitioners of "blousing," where a player pulls the elastic in his pant leg up to the knee, then neatly folds over the remaining fabric, forming a perfect, slightly flaring cuff at mid-calf.

Big Jim. Does it all.

We couldn't clearly remember the Liberty Bell look, so we went back into the AP photo archives to get a better shot of the Liberty Bell stirrup.

UPDATE: After looking at the photos of Thome, Matt and I were debating whether Thome wore stirrups or socks with the Liberty Bell logo on them. We emailed Paul Lukas of Uni-watch.com to get his thoughts.

"He actually wore red stirrups over red undersocks!," Lukas responded to us via email.

>>Baseball and socks appeal [Inquirer]

AP Photos

Topps cover man Claude Giroux answers U.S.-Canada questions

Topps cover man Claude Giroux answers U.S.-Canada questions

Claude Giroux spent Friday signing virtual autographs as the cover athlete for Topps NHL Skate 2017, a new onilne digital trading card game. Remember when trading cards came in a bubble gum pack? 

After the event, Giroux sat down with CSN's Michael Barkann on Philly Sports Talk for a game of “Who Does It Better: Canada or the United States?”

The game started off with a few easy softball questions, with Giroux picking the NFL over the Candian Football League. Then it got a little tougher, as Giroux chose Canadian hockey over U.S. hockey.

Despite talents like Drake and Shania Twain, Giroux went with the U.S. over Canada in music, and also chose American bacon over Canadian bacon.

Eventually, Barkann asked Giroux which beer he preffered.

“I don’t drink beer," Giroux responded.

Really? What Canadian doesn't like beer?

As he started to get up out of his seat after the interview, Giroux showed his true colors. “I love beer. I love beer,” he said.

Check out the video above to see the full game. 

Wayne Gretzky defends Connor McDavid's outburst over Brandon Manning

Wayne Gretzky defends Connor McDavid's outburst over Brandon Manning

PALM BEACH, Fla. — As the primary target of opponents over his Hall of Fame career, Wayne Gretzky can certainly empathize with the frustration of Oilers star Connor McDavid.

McDavid and Flyers defenseman Brandon Manning jostled all evening long in a 6-5 Edmonton loss. McDavid denounced the tactics of his opponent after the game, claiming Manning intentionally injured him last season; McDavid missed 37 games with a broken collarbone.

"I guess we can put the whole 'if he did it' thing to rest because what he said out there kind of confirmed that," said McDavid, who taunted Manning after scoring the second goal in the Oilers' loss.

"I think anybody who knows me or who has played with or against me along the road here, knows that I am not that kind of player," Manning said, according to a statement released by the Flyers. "I am not out there intentionally trying to hurt people. I'm a guy who plays the game hard and I take pride in that."

Gretzky didn't mind seeing that fire in McDavid, saying competitiveness is part of what makes the great ones great. And he said the targeting comes with the territory of being a superstar. It was something he and Mario Lemieux dealt with, too.

"And Connor, he's going to get tested every night, but this is not new for him," Gretzky said Friday at the NHL board of governors meetings. "He's been tested since he was a kid and then playing junior hockey and now in the NHL and he's always responded and done his part."