In appreciation of DraftKings current rally cap promotion to raise $1 million for the United Way, we decided to look back at some of the great rally animals in sports history.
You can help as well, by uploading a pic or video of yourself on social media with the hashtag #DKRally, and DraftKings will contribute $1 for every video or picture, with up to $1 million aiding in the relief efforts related to Covid-19.
Rally Monkey, Anaheim Angels
It all started innocently enough, as the scoreboard operators at Angel Stadium played a clip from Ace Ventura: Pet Detective during a 2000 home game.
It caught fire in 2002 when the Angels went on to win the World Series, and the primate would be called into action to fire up the home crowd. Now it’s a full-on part of the team culture, mixed into every viral dance and crossover pop culture reference possible.
DJ Kitty, Tampa Bay Rays
Back in 2010, when a beleaguered franchise two years removed from a World Series but without much fan support decided what they needed to fire up the crowd in the worst stadium in pro sports was a feline playing “Jump” by The Movement (yes, we Googled it).
But for some reason, be it the adorable accoutrements or the mix ability on the 1’s and 2’s, it worked. The Rays now fire up DJ Kitty whenever they need a base hit or two, and Rally Kitty is now an official Rays mascot alongside the original Raymond.
Let’s hope cats don’t hate the cold weather in Montreal too much.
Rally Squirrel, St. Louis Cardinals
As a Phillies fan, there’s a reason we put this one last. In the 2011 NLDS, the Cardinals were in Game 4 on the brink of elimination. A squirrel ran on the field during an at-bat by Skip Schumacher, and a legend was born.
David Freese hit a two-run home run the next inning, went on to win 5-3, and the Cards won Game 5 in Philadelphia on the way to capturing the World Series. Don’t think the varmint had anything to do with it? The Rally Squirrel ended up inscribed on the team’s championship rings.
And occasionally, it still makes an appearance at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.