All dressed up: Phils don tuxedos
At lighthearted magazine photo shoot, jokes abound at Utley's expense
CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Think of some of the coolest men in the world, real or fictitious:
Samuel L. Jackson.
Now put them in black tuxedos, but with their pants resting just above their ankles, exposing their legs and their white socks. Suddenly, those cool guys look a little geeky. Suddenly, those cool guys look like they could lose a fight to Steve Urkel from "Family Matters" or Screech from "Saved by the Bell."
Chase Utley looked a little geeky Friday afternoon at Bright House Field, where he and 22 of his teammates put on tuxedos for a photo shoot for Phillies Magazine. Utley's pants were a little big, so he asked for suspenders. But once the suspenders snapped into place, his pants shot above his ankles to show the white socks he was wearing (nobody seemed to have any black socks, so players wore white, red or none at all).
The entire clubhouse broke out in laughter.
"Myron Noodleman!" Brett Myers shouted.
The photo shoot included the 23 remaining players from the World Series roster, which meant Pat Burrell and So Taguchi weren't present. It also included the Phillies' coaching staff.
"It was a fantastic idea," catcher Chris Coste said.
Coste said he hadn't worn a tuxedo since his 1991 Fargo (N.D.) South High School prom. Charlie Manuel said he hadn't worn a tux since his son got married about 12 years ago, and he hadn't worn one before that since he graduated from high school in Buena Vista, Va.
Pitching coach Rich Dubee said he last wore a tux 30 years and two days ago, when he got married.
Players warmed up to the tuxedos quickly, but with their red vests and red bow ties, some players and coaches joked that they looked a little like limousine drivers or waiters. Hitting coach Milt Thompson walked into the clubhouse and held up a sign that said, "Werth," mimicking limo drivers at the airport.
Jasyon Werth laughed.
Players didn't have to wear those uncomfortable shoes for long, not that Jimmy Rollins minded. Rollins actually wore his black patent leather Air Force Ones, which he just happened to have at the ballpark.
"In case a game breaks out on the field," Ryan Howard laughed.
"High school prom style," Rollins said. "Ghetto fabulous is what we call it."
Ryan Madson assisted Myers with his red bowtie. Once secured, Cole Hamels joked that Myers was ready for "My Big Redneck Wedding," referring to the popular CMT show. Myers, who wears a T-shirt during the season that proclaims himself part of the "Redneck Wrecking Crew," didn't argue.
"Hey, you can't polish a ..., " Myers said.
Once on the field, players gathered around the World Series trophy, with Manuel standing immediately behind it.
Coste and Scott Eyre liked where they were positioned for the photo.
"We were right in front of Utley and Howard, so everybody is going to gravitate toward that side so they're going to be looking at us," Coste said.
They really would have been looking at them had Utley not fixed his pants. Fortunately, he had, and his coolness quotient shot up as a result.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.