'Rally Mantis'

Everyone had counted out the defending World Series champs, so the Kansas City Royals turned to desperate measures: They brought a praying mantis into the dugout.

Unorthodox as it is, that newly adopted good-luck charm is paying huge dividends for the team, which has gone 17-4 since adopting a 'Rally Mantis.' The magic of the mantis was on display last night, when Salvador Perez walloped a first-pitch home run and promptly show his appreciation with a kiss.

The rally mantis has gained a cult following quickly, particularly as the Royals climbed from sub-.500 to within two games of the final Wild Card spot. Fans of the hottest team in the league understand what's going on:

Unfortunately, the Royals are onto their second mantis mascot, Rally Mantis, Jr., after the first one died in captivity. Here's hoping the second one has a longer, but no less magical, life.

Mantis Magic!!! #RallyMantisJr

A video posted by @kcroyals on

If so, expect to see the Royals in October.