The Miami Marlins have joined a movement gaining momentum across Major League Baseball this year: on-field gatherings centered around a moment when the team pulls off a memorable achievement.
While the Los Angeles Angels rally around a cowboy hat, the Toronto Blue Jays utilize a patch-ridden sport coat and the Boston Red Sox stroll around in a laundry cart, the Marlins have been passing around a football helmet … and it’s working.
After a walk-off victory over the San Francisco Giants June 4 at LoanDepot Park, the team debuted the football helmet in a celebration. People laughed, shared hugs and the helmet stuck.
A month later, Miami is in better position than before the headwear showed up. In fact, the Marlins posted a 15-13 record in June, after stumbling to a 7-19 record in May.
“It just came out of nowhere while they were celebrating the walk-off, and I think it was Miguel Rojas that put it to Jesus Sanchez,” said Daniel Alvarez, sports journalist from El Extra Base, who covered the win over the Giants. “It is great that the players are adding this to the team, most of the teams have some sort of item and this one it is perfect for our city.”
In an effort to motivate the Marlins on and off the field, the idea of the accessory indeed came from Rojas, the team’s captain. And it looks sharp. The helmet is designed with the Marlins logo and is laced with stickers of the players’ jersey numbers.
Roberto Rios, a fan of the Marlins, has been paying more attention to the helmet lately, as the club has been winning.
“I was a little bit confused by watching other teams with their accessories since it was the first time I saw something like that,” Rios said. “But when I saw the Marlins had something prepared too, it was really cool to see the guys having fun with it. It brings joy to the team and also the fans of the sport.”
Now, it has simply become a source of inspiration. The Marlins break out the helmet after every victory, every home run, just about every time they pull off a standout play.
There’s a decent chance fans will see more of the helmet, at least in the early part of July. The Marlins’ month begins with six games against the Washington Nationals and Angels, two clubs who are well below the .500 mark.