New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano booted a ground ball in the sixth inning on Sunday night, which opened the door to a game-tying, three-run rally for the Mets, after trailing 5-1 on the back of Nick Swisher's three-run shot in the third inning.
Though Cano claimed this was "not an error," the Mets were able to tie the game as a result of an out not being recorded on the innocuous ground ball (via The Star-Ledger's Marc Carig).
The costly miscue might have caused some fans to think, "Nice game, pretty boy!" However, Cano would soon get his shot at redemption.
Jerry Seinfeld himself tweeted the following, once the Mets managed to tie the game:
But the hashtag "rallychicken" wasn't trending for very long, as the tie only lasted until the top of the eighth.
If the Mets wanted to sacrifice the "chickens" that are the New York Yankees—as Mets "closer" Frank Francisco (or should I call him Pedro Cerrano?) called his crosstown rivals prior to the series when interviewed by Mike Puma of the NY Post—then Cano made like Jake Taylor in Major League, and instead delivered them a bucket of fried chicken.
Cano launched a mammoth tie-breaking home run off Miguel Batista into the batter's eye, just to the left of the centerpiece apple, giving the Bronx Bombers a 6-5 lead.
In a game that was supposed to be a pitchers' duel between CC Sabathia and R.A. Dickey, runs were scored in bunches and both bullpens were called upon to preserve precarious margins.
And the Yankees' 6-5 margin would hold up as Mariano Rivera's replacement, Rafael Soriano, came on in the ninth inning to nail down his 15th save of the season.
And with that, the Yankees had taken two out of three from the Mets at Citi Field, and five out of six on the season.
As it turned out, the fowl hilarity in the Mets clubhouse ended as quickly as it had started.
According to Matt Ehalt of ESPNNewYork.com, reliever Tim Byrdak had a clubhouse attendant buy a live chicken in Manhattan's Chinatown for $8, presumably to amuse himself and make light of Francisco's comments.
After Francisco saved Friday's 6-4 victory for the Mets, allowing a hit and a walk in the process, he was unavailable on Saturday due to discomfort in the oblique.
By Sunday, Francisco had hit the disabled list (via Tom Pedulla of Newsday).
Thankfully, the poor chicken that Byrdak had purchased was spared its own trip to the permanent DL.
According to Ehalt, a group called Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY has taken the bird in, and the Mets have paid for its lodging there after caring for it over an entire weekend.
The team chef even went to the trouble of looking up the proper diet for a chicken on the Internet (oatmeal, berries and bread).
As Byrdak admitted to Ehalt:
We really didn't think the whole process through of actually having a live chicken and what we were going to do afterwards with him. So we decided we need to find a home for this thing pretty quick because we were going on the road.
Apparently, no one told Byrdak that chickens aren't just for the Subway Series, they're for life. I wonder what happened to the puppy he got for Christmas.
They even went so far as to name the chicken "Little Jerry Seinfeld," after Kramer's pet rooster on the show Seinfeld.
Of course, in that episode, Little Jerry is pitted against a ringer rooster owned by Marcelino (who also owns the bodega where Jerry had bounced a clown check), and Kramer dives into the ring to save Little Jerry from certain defeat, getting severely pecked in the process.
In this case, the team that adopted Little Jerry as a mascot also got severely pecked by a superior opponent.
Except this time, it wasn't by Marcelino's rooster, but instead by the Yankees' longball.
Thankfully, like Kramer, the Mets did the right thing and spared "Little Jerry Seinfeld" the worst fate of all, which in this case is being the Mets' mascot for the remainder of the season.
As for the Yankees, like George Costanza said while Kramer was getting pecked by the rooster, they ordered up a big "Tamaleeeeeee!"