While most Arizona Diamondbacks fans wear red to support the team, one 65-year-old fan waves homemade flags and dances in section 309 in order to provide visual support for the team.
Cindy McBride, better known as “Rally Sally,” said she predicted a successful season during spring training.
“This season has been fun,” McBride said. “They have been playing with a strong attitude and heart, and I just knew they were going to do well.”
After the Diamondbacks lost the first two games in the playoffs, McBride is worried about the next game on Tuesday and a possible one Wednesday. In order to avoid elimination, the team needs to win Tuesday’s game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
“In order to win (Tuesday), they need to choose what they swing at more carefully,” McBride said. “Justin Upton and Chris Young have been doing better at making the pitcher throw the ball directly to them.”
Despite her age, McBride climbed the bleachers during the regular season’s last game on Sept. 28, carrying her flags and pompoms. Once she reached section 309, she laid them out and started dancing.
McBride made up different cheers that she yells for each D-backs player. For example, when Justin Upton is up to bat, she yells, “Justin up, up and away!”
She saw the team make it all the way to the playoffs in 2007, and said it’s different this time.
“The players were younger in 2007. This time they’re older, more mature, and they’re playing more solidly,” McBride said.
Rally Sally began waving her flags nine years ago to show visual support of the team and also help the crowd get excited.
“People these days need to see things,” McBride said. “They want action and adventure.”
Fans used to call her “the dancing granny,” or “the flag lady,” but after years of waving her flags, D-backs players affectionately gave her the name Rally Sally. She makes different flags for most of the players.
“I think of how the player fits into the team, and then I think of a design in my head. Then I go from there,” McBride said.
Robert Mitchell, a Chase Field Stadium employee, said he has seen McBride coming to the stadium for years. He said she knows most people working at the stadium.
McBride is an important part of the D-backs because she gets people to get up out of their seats to dance with her, Mitchell said.
“Every sport has their dancers to get people excited about the game,” Mitchell said. “Rally Sally does that for the Diamondbacks.”
Mitchell said that McBride is enthusiastic about her flag waving and should be offered a job.
Kevin Chirco, a D-backs fan, said he always likes watching Rally Sally because she makes him laugh.
Chirco attends home games with his friends, and said McBride has an essence that older ladies don’t have.
“I enjoy watching the kids get excited and dance around with her and she has great costumes,” he said. “It wouldn’t be a good game without her dancing.”
McBride said that everything is resting on the game on Tuesday. If the D-backs lose, then they’re out of the playoffs.
“If we lose tomorrow, I will probably cry because we will be out for the season,” McBride said.
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