As their mediocre teams lost in New York and Washington Monday night, beleaguered Yankees and Nationals fans were honored with two new heroes in their respective stadiums: a frightened cat and a peaceful, stoic praying mantis.
The former came loose in the outfield of Yankee Stadium in the bottom of the eighth, causing a seven-minute delay and a bit of fear for any cat lovers in the crowd.
“Gotta be so scared right now,” Michael Kaye, the Yankees television announcer, told his audience as the tame Shorthair darted across the warning track, weaving in and around the grounds crew.
A cat runs away from security and grounds personnel during Monday’s eighth inning
The scared cat sits along the warning lane at Yankee Stadium before escaping
Groundsmen try to catch a cat that came loose on the field during the eighth inning between the Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium
All of the cat’s escape attempts proved fruitless, though they displayed impressive athleticism as they attempted to jump the outside field wall in the Bronx. “Hopefully,” announcer Michael Kaye . said
The Yankees were behind the Baltimore Orioles, 7-1, so onlookers were only too happy to focus their support on the cat with chants of “MVP” — a chorus traditionally reserved for the likes of Thurman Munson and Don Mattingly in the South Bronx.
But as the crowd cheered, the visibly excited cat struggled to find a way out of the Yankee Stadium outfield.
All of the cat’s escape attempts proved fruitless, though they displayed impressive athleticism as they attempted to jump the outside field wall in the Bronx.
“Hopefully,” Kaye said, growing increasingly critical of the situation.
“If that person opened the door there, the cat could go through,” he said, referring to the bullpen door in the right-center field.
“Just open the door,” he continued. ‘What are they doing?
Twice the cat was right by the bullpen’s door and they held the door shut. It does not make any sense.’
The cat was previously seen in the Orioles’ dugout before running off onto the Yankee Stadium field
In total, the cat caused a seven-minute delay at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx on Monday
Finally, after being cornered in left field, only to escape to deep center and return past the third baseline, the cat finally ran through an open gate and off the field.
Yankees spokespersons did not immediately respond to DailyMail.com’s request for an update on the cat.
Orioles outfielder Cedric Mullins told reporters after the game that he saw the cat “chilling” in the dugout earlier in the evening.
‘Before I knew it, I heard all the fans cheering. I didn’t know what was going on,” Mullins said, as quoted by MLB.com. “I didn’t see the cat until he got to the outside wall. Then it was watching seven grown men have their ankles broken by a cat. It was quite funny to watch.’
Orioles manager Brandon Hyde joked that the cat had the characteristics of a well-rounded player: “The cat showed good speed, agility and verticality a few times.”
Although Kaye was concerned about the nervous cat, he also recognized the humor in the situation.
“Now we normally don’t show when someone goes wild on the pitch, but this time we make an exception,” he joked.
Nationals outfielder Victor Robles served as front row for a praying mantis on Monday
Robles even tilted his head to let the praying mantis move to the front row: the edge
A praying mantis is considered lucky, but this one was apparently a Phillies fan as Philadelphia took a 5-3 win after being seen on Robles’ hat for the first time
Cats are no stranger to major professional sports in the US. In 2019, a cat ran onto the field at a Giants-Cowboys game at New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium, and in 2017, another cat climbed the outside wall of the Miami Marlins.
More famously, a black cat walked onto the field at Shea Stadium when the second-place Mets hosted the first-place Chicago Cubs in September 1969. The Cubs ended up losing the game to eventual world champion Mets—a defeat many Chicagoans and Cubs players gave blamed on the alleged bad luck associated with black cats.
Phillies fan and boxing reporter Eric Raskin called the invertebrate ‘Mickey Mantis’
But while black cats are considered unlucky, a praying mantis is believed to bring good luck.
Unfortunately for Nationals centerfielder Victor Robles, who played the eighth and ninth innings with the green invertebrate on his hat, this praying mantis was either defective or a Philadelphia Phillies fan.
“It’s a praying mantis praying for a rally,” Nationals announcer Bob Carpenter said as Washington led 3-2 in the eight inning.
That one-run lead quickly became a two-point deficit, as Philadelphia won 5-3.
“I’ll call him Mickey Mantis,” Phillies fan and boxing reporter Eric Raskin wrote on Twitter, referring to late Yankees legend Mickey Mantle.
“You come to the stadium and watch a baseball game, you never know what you’re going to see,” former Montreal Expos player FP Santangelo said on the Nationals broadcast.