Superstitions are as much a part of baseball as fly balls, peanuts, and the seventh inning stretch. This spring, as players, coaches, and fans all gear up for a winning season, no doubt they’ll dream up new good luck charms and game-day rituals to bring their team success. Inspired by this longtime tradition, we took a look at some of baseball’s more famous antics. Now, let’s play ball!
Curses for the Ages
Baseball is the only professional sport that takes curses seriously. The “Curse of the Bambino,” which began when the Boston Red Sox traded Babe Ruth to rivals the New York Yankees, is the league’s most famous; it lasted 86 years before it was finally broken with a Red Sox World Series victory in 2004.
The Chicago Cubs’ “Curse of the Billy Goat” is finally over! Legend has it that during the Cubs’ last World Series appearance in 1945, the owner of the local Billy Goat Tavern brought his goat to a game for good luck. When the four-legged fan was denied entry, tempers flared and the owner cursed the team’s prospects for victory. After many years, the Cubs finally broke the curse in 2016 when they defeated the Cleveland Indians in a dramatic victory.
Dress for Success
From repeat-wearing of “good luck” undies to intentionally mismatched socks, personal styling has long provided talismans for victory. In fall 2015, some Kansas City Royals fans skipped haircuts and wore baseball gear every single day during the postseason. That creative devotion just might have helped the Royals beat the New York Mets to be crowned World Series Champions. Not prepared to forsake hygiene and grooming for your favorite team? Play it safe – and stylish – by rocking your team’s Major League Baseball® Charm Bangle or unisex Pull Cord Bracelet on game days (or, if you’re diehard, every day!).
In the Batter’s Box
In that moment when a player steps up to the plate, taps his cleats with the bat, and winds up in preparation of the pitch, the fate of the game is on their shoulders. No wonder some players develop a batter’s box routine to bring them a little extra luck.
Baseball legend Babe Ruth refused to lend out his beloved bats, claiming that each bat had only a certain number of hits in it. Hall of Fame third baseman and two-time Gold Glove winner Wade Boggs would write “chai” in the dirt before the first pitch; the word means “life” in Hebrew. (Overall, Boggs batted a solid .328 during his career.) And former player Mike Hargrove took so long at the plate to get everything just right—his helmet, his gloves, his bat, his foot stance – that he earned the nickname “The Human Rain Delay.”
Don’t risk a losing season! Find your team talisman today by shopping the newest additions to the MLB Collection.
Written by Erin Lindholm