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Tara, the hero cat, to throw out the first pitch for the Bakersfield Blaze

May 16, 2014, 8:27 AM EDT

‏As a cat person, I was quite pleased to see the video that blew up on Wednesday in which a cat unleashed holy hell on that dog attacking that four-year-old kid. If you’ve been under a rock since then, here it is:

As a cat person and a baseball person, I am quite pleased to see this:

The Bakersfield Blaze — the Class A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds — has reached out to the cat’s people hoping to get Tara (that’s her name) to make the ceremonial first pitch at a game next week.

A rep for the team tells us … the owner of the cat ACCEPTED THE OFFER … and Tara (along with the boy she saved) will take the mound to throw out the first pitch on May 20th.  

 

The team has confirmed it:

Of course, as a cat person, I fully expect the cat to be an uncooperative jackass at the game because cats pretty much do whatever the hell they want to do and never stick to the script. Which, of course, is one of the many reasons why I love cats.

  1. renaado - May 16, 2014 at 8:36 AM

    Gotta love this! That cat is worth a hundred times than my Labrador Retriever, who has nothin to do but bite stuffs all day long. Truly a magnificent cat that is.

  2. ashot - May 16, 2014 at 8:38 AM

    I feel vindicated that I avoided watching that video until it was posted on a sports site. Thanks, Craig.

    • Kevin S. - May 16, 2014 at 10:42 AM

      This.

  3. hojo20 - May 16, 2014 at 8:38 AM

    That cat deserves a can of Fancy Feast.

    • renaado - May 16, 2014 at 8:42 AM

      And a yarn ball or two too. That cat deserves everything a cat can’t claim.

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 8:50 AM

        All you bleeding heart mouse huggers know what that cat really deserves.

      • Kevin S. - May 16, 2014 at 9:09 AM

        My cats are actually too lazy to hunt mice.

      • cavreconscout - May 17, 2014 at 10:35 AM

        Old gator…..As an american in China last two yrs I can say with confidence the Chinese do not eat cat.they do eat dog.

    • jarathen - May 16, 2014 at 8:47 AM

      I think it’d settle for some primo nip.

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 8:52 AM

        Having bought more than my share of nickel bags of primo nip in my dissipated youth, I can assure you that you would be less than happy with the stuff.

  4. dan1111 - May 16, 2014 at 8:40 AM

    An impressive cat, but can she throw? This has the potential to be nearly as bad as that John Kerry first pitch.

  5. cinfante54 - May 16, 2014 at 8:47 AM

    I wonder if she throws southpaw…

    I’ll see myself out.

    • toasted54 - May 16, 2014 at 8:56 AM

      Spitballs and hairballs

      • renaado - May 16, 2014 at 9:02 AM

        “Spitball”.

        Please no, No one wants that cat to get ejected out there…

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 9:46 AM

        Have the Philippines not yet adapted the wonderful Chinese culinary traditions for cats?

      • renaado - May 16, 2014 at 9:58 AM

        Well, at least not yet though. Dunno with Filipino-Chinese people here in Makati City chinatown, but I’m really against dog/cat culinary.

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 10:22 AM

        Well then, Bali is off your dining agenda – dog is a regular item on the rijstaffel.

        Incidentally, I am a big fan of that Philippine veggie omelet with fish sauce, garlic, mixed veggies, hot peppers and bitter melon. Make it at least twice a week.

      • renaado - May 16, 2014 at 10:31 AM

        Awesome! Certainly that’s more than good.

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 2:48 PM

        Ackcherley, you’re right, it is more than good. As a diabetic, I can measure – and I mean, with a glucometer – a four to five point unmedicated drop in blood sugar within two hours of eating one of those. Normally, eating almost anything causes a temporary blood sugar spike but this recipe knocks it down event though it contains tomatoes, which have sugar. It’s the bitter melon. It’s no fad, folks – this veggie contains charantin, vicine and the insulin mimic polypeptide-p. That, and when you know how to prepare it – slice it open, clean out the pith and seeds, dry-salt or blanch in salted water for a few minutes – you can ameliorate the alum-like aspect of its flavor enough so that its taste in curries, stews, masalas and so forth is really very tasty. Ren – it’s a pretty common local dish in the Philippines; I first ate it in Manila. Kinda like egg foo young. Give it a try – just for the flavor.

  6. jarathen - May 16, 2014 at 8:49 AM

    I really wonder if the cat was protecting the child or just what she viewed as her own territory. Like Craig I’m a cat person, and while cats actually DO have a certainly loyalty, it’s more of an equal partnership (to them) than some kind of servitude. It’s great that the cat saved the kid, I can’t help but think that the cat was more offended that the dog would come around its house than its family.

    Also, this is why I’m a cat person. No cat this side of rabies just saunters up to a child at random and assaults it.

    • asimonetti88 - May 16, 2014 at 9:49 AM

      Most dogs don’t either. I have to wonder if the dog had rabies as well. I’m glad the child is ok and I hope he got a rabies shot!

      • jarathen - May 16, 2014 at 10:01 AM

        I’ve met more dogs that flip out when i walk by the house than cats that do more than lazily open a single eye.

      • paperlions - May 16, 2014 at 11:04 AM

        Dogs behind a fence that “flip out” are doing so because they are restrained (behind the fence) and would like to see come out to see if you have anything fun to offer (food, play, belly rubs). Other breeds that flip out when behind a fence are doing so to sound the alarm that there is someone approaching, which is an innate behavior. Most dog’s don’t flip out at all if there are people out there with them because there is no reason to sound the alarm….those they are trying to summon are already there. Canids are generally social animals that live in cooperative groups. Cats are all solitary animals that don’t. As suggested above, the cat was only protecting its territory. If the kid was attacked outside of the cat’s territory, the cats response would probably be complete apathy.

        The problem (if any) with most dogs is that they have lazy owners that don’t spend sufficient time training the dogs (you should work with your dog on some sort of training almost every day) or because they don’t spend sufficient time ensuring that they have sufficient mental stimuli and physical activity.

    • sophiethegreatdane - May 16, 2014 at 10:41 AM

      I think you underestimate how mean cats can be. I still have a scar on my hand from a cat simply walking up and biting me. I was just sitting on a stool, the cat jumped up on the counter, bit me and looked at me like “Take that, jerkwad. Now get me a treat.”

      I’m happy this cat stepped in and attacked that dog. It sure makes for great video. But let’s not assume all dogs are like that. SophietheGreatDane wouldn’t hurt a fly. She’s a big, silly, gentle soul, and it’s why I love her dearly. :)

      • jarathen - May 16, 2014 at 11:06 AM

        My unscientific estimate is that 99.5% of all reasonably healthy dogs are kind and loving and wonderful and super friendly and just want to say hi and maybe if you could scratch them behind the ears that would be great. But 99.9% of all reasonably healthy cats will leave you alone if you leave them alone. It’s just a higher percentage is all.

    • bluemalak - May 16, 2014 at 1:17 PM

      Ours had never shown any aggression until a male neighbor and his wife came over, and he tried to go upstairs to use the bathroom. She was very friendly with our neighbors until he tried going up the stairs. The kids were sleeping upstairs, the cat did not know this man, and she stood on the stairs hissing and growing, and wouldn’t let him up the stairs. She was not letting some strange man upstairs where her kids were sleeping.

      So yeah, this cat was most definitely protecting her child. I’ve had many cats throughout my life, but the one I was talking about was the only one who ever acted protective of the kids.

  7. ditto65 - May 16, 2014 at 9:04 AM

    I hate cats.

    • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 9:47 AM

      Then you should own one of Macondo’s famous feral Burmese pythons.

      • cavreconscout - May 17, 2014 at 10:39 AM

        Old gator…..As an american in China last two yrs I can say with confidence the Chinese do not eat cat.they do eat dog.

    • asimonetti88 - May 16, 2014 at 9:50 AM

      I’m allergic, so they bug me but they are definitely interesting creatures! I do enjoy cat videos on the internet.

  8. mdpickles - May 16, 2014 at 9:06 AM

    So over Grumpy Cat. Welcome Hero Cat!

  9. Rich Stowe - May 16, 2014 at 9:13 AM

    the cat was clearly exhibiting a case of catnip rage and it’s clear Craig supports him just like he supports ARod and Braun….and now we get to read all the articles written by Craig supporting the use of catnip by felines and how we the general public treat the catnip users differently than the hairball users….
    :)

  10. bigharold - May 16, 2014 at 9:20 AM

    As not a cat person, But I’m truly impressed. Give Cree where credit is due, whether the cat was defending the boy or just it’s territory it showed heart and tenacity. If that was my cat it would be living large the rest of its days.

    • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 9:45 AM

      Our cat has been living large for all of its days and hasn’t done doodly squat to deserve it. I believe that man evolved to fill an ecological niche reserved for abject suckers so that relatively few feline species would ackcherley have to work for a living.

      • voteforno6 - May 16, 2014 at 10:30 AM

        As the saying goes: dogs have owners, and cats have staff.

      • bigharold - May 16, 2014 at 11:15 AM

        Most pets don’t do doodlely. We’ve two rescued cats. One hides in my sons room venturing out once or twice a day to wail at the top of the stairs reminding us that it needs to be fed. The other likes attention, …in short burst. Pet her for more than three seconds and she will let you know she’s done by biting you. But, at least she earns her keep cause she’s a mouse murdering ball of fluffiness.

        I’m a dog guy, we’ve got two of those too. They’re completely useless. Except for all that relentless affection and willingness to be by your side and do whatever you want all they do is lay around and wait for me to eat so they can sit there and mooch a bite for themselves. You’ve never seen anything so focused, attentive and passively aggressive interested as my Boxer watching me eat a sandwich, … and she eventually gets her cut.

        Yeah dog or cat, landing at our house is like hitting dog/cat Power Ball. But the cat in this video deserves more. Like some kind of cat medal with a V for valor. Or, maybe a fresh bit of salmon a few times a week.

      • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

        Our cat will kill for salmon. However, she will torture and kill for a shrimp.

    • paperlions - May 16, 2014 at 11:06 AM

      Yeah, that cat has heart, it’s gritty and scrappy, and showed a lot of hustle. It was also very prepared to defend its territory. Harper and Hicks could learn a thing or two from that cat.

  11. barrywhererufrom - May 16, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    Yeah Cat!! That poor kid was pretty messed up by the dog attack. I wonder if our new favorite cat threw a hair ball..sorry somebody had to say it and it might as well be me!

  12. deathmonkey41 - May 16, 2014 at 9:44 AM

    I believe that dog has now been put down. From what I understand, it has bitten people before, so the fact that its owners elected to be so haphazard in caring for the animal so that it was able to get loose and attack children tells me that they are, in fact, incredibly stupid and should be put down too.

    • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 10:25 AM

      And best of all – since they already knew the animal was dangerous, they can now be sued! Let’s hear it for the good old American wealth redistribution system!

  13. lukedunphysscienceproject - May 16, 2014 at 9:53 AM

    I hear they are also going to have a guest organist during the pre-game:

    • cavreconscout - May 17, 2014 at 10:38 AM

      Old gator…..As an american in China last two yrs I can say with confidence the Chinese do not eat cat.they do eat dog.

  14. thetoolsofignorance - May 16, 2014 at 10:32 AM

    This is why I keep one of both. If the dog turns the cat will deal with it and vie versa. They are the object of each others greatest feuds and we two humans mere referees.

    And a big Well Done to that cat. He’s earned himself a whole fish if it was up to me.

  15. hk62 - May 16, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    When cats have a dog envy complex, like this one, that aren’t as useless as normal. Pretty impressive loyalty! Also, that’s not a tiny little cat, she got some serious punishment in on the dog with the flying block. My shepherds would let that cat hang out with them.

  16. El Bravo - May 16, 2014 at 11:06 AM

    Cats are awesome. Dogs are awesome. There I said it.

    • Old Gator - May 16, 2014 at 2:52 PM

      Pet pygmy rattlesnakes are more awesome yet. Ask the man who owns one.

  17. NatsLady - May 16, 2014 at 12:46 PM

    My conclusion is that most of you have the wrong cats. Mine are affectionate and sweet. They follow me from room to room, nuzzle me at night and come when I call. Except for one kitty, I’ve always been able to train my cats to walk on a leash (which fascinates the tourists, because, apparently, cats don’t walk on leashes in Kansas).

  18. illuminancer - May 16, 2014 at 2:10 PM

    Awesome cat! One of ours would be too scared to ever come out of the house, and his brother would sit there and stare blankly, because he makes boxes of rocks look smart.

    On the other hand, our cats are black and orange, so there’s that.

  19. CyclePower - May 17, 2014 at 9:05 PM

    Bringing a cat to the pitcher’s mound in a packed baseball stadium…I don’t see that ending well. It brings to mind the video of the cat vs. the groundskeeper in the Kingdome years ago.

    http://m.mlb.com/video/v4521025/a-kitten-runs-amock-at-the-seattle-kingdome/?c_id=sea

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