Mallex Smith's grandmother is a perfectionist, so she threw out two first pitches before Sunday's Rays game
There's one thing every human being on Earth can agree on: Grandmas are the best. They cook great food, tell great stories and give great hugs. In
Because the Rays were on the road on Mother's Day, the Rays chose Sunday's 8-3 win over the Orioles to have Willie Mae Footman -- Smith's grandmother -- be the honorary bat girl and throw out the first pitch. Yes, that's right Willie Mae ... pretty close to Willie Mays.
It also appears that she has been studying "Rookie of the Year," because she opted to go with the underhand toss.
Though that was a solid toss, it was actually her second effort. After her grip slipped the first time and the ball rolled its way toward home, Footman wanted one more chance to get it right.
"We talked about it, but she had her own plans. I think it's cool that she's probably the only person to ever throw out a first pitch twice like that," Smith said after the game. "I love her competitive sense to want to be perfect."
But Footman is not just a perfectionist with a Hall of Fame name. She's also a breast cancer survivor, who has been cancer-free for more than eight years.
"Used to be when you had cancer, you didn't tell anybody," Footman told MLB.com's Bill Chastain earlier this month. "When I found out that I had breast cancer, I told everybody. I didn't keep it a secret. That made other teachers at my school go out and get checked for cancer, and some of them found that they had cancer. So I'm glad that I did that. I'm glad that I'm a survivor.
"I got through it. I just think that I was really blessed. My friends were by my side. My family was by my side when I was going through radiation and chemo."