Q+A with Seattle Mariners ‘Rally Shoe Guy’ Ben Cox

It worked before — can the magic happen again?

Seattleite Ben Cox cheers for the Mariners while balancing a Birkenstock sandal on his head.

Ben Cox traveled by bus to the park on Saturday, returning with only one shoe.

Photo courtesy of the Seattle Mariners

Feet don’t fail us now. During the Mariners unbelievable Wild Card game comeback, West Seattleite Ben Cox started an unusual good luck trend at the T-Mobile Park watch party: putting a Birkenstock sandal on his head. 🩴

The gesture known as “the rally shoe” became a hit — and the Mariners even put the sandal in the team’s Hall of Fame. “It has full infamy,” Ben says. “Like it’s more famous than other rally objects in Seattle sports.”

Here’s how the Mariners diehard is kicking it now. ⚾

What gave you the inspiration for the rally shoe?

I go to a lot of Mariners games, and last year, I saw a guy on the Jumbotron put a shoe on his head before a rally started. So, as things were looking bleak [on Saturday] and we were looking for any momentum, that’s how I picked it up.

When did you realize people were following your lead?

As the hits started to fall, it got crazier and crazier. I looked over at my brother-in-law and he’s like, “Dude, there are so many people putting their shoes on ahead. This is ridiculous.” [After the Mariners took the lead], people started putting me up on their shoulders — I’m crowd-surfing at this point. They put me on the Jumbotron. It was really fun.

What happened once you gave the shoe to the Mariners for posterity?

I was a little too amped up, and I just walked out of the stadium barefoot. We went to Slugger’s after. My wife looks at me and she’s like, “You can’t walk around barefoot in Seattle.” So my buddy Matt took off his sock and gave it to me.

Are you going back to T-Mobile this weekend?

I have tickets for Saturday and Sunday [...] gotta keep the superstition going, so I’ll just wear whatever Birks I’m wearing that day. If they’re looking for a rally, or we need a little boost, I’ll try to get it going.

More from SEAtoday