FLORIDA – The Miami Marlins’ game against the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday night took a short and unscheduled pause between the fifth and sixth inning when a cat ran onto the field and began scrambling up on to the home run sculpture at Marlins Park.
The cat, despite its lucid athleticism, failed to field the ball or make a play, however, its climbing skills did draw applause from the 36,519 crowd.
Both teams completely stopped when the cat – grey, sleek, probably not a bad base-stealer – entered the field of play. It ran right along the outfield warning track, shrugged off the attention of Miami right fielder Giancarlo Stanton and a stadium employee, and then jumped right up into the Marlins’ distinctive/terrifying home run sculpture, where it paused for a short while and took a little rest.
The sculpture is activated every time a Marlins player manages to score a home run – fish jump, music plays, and lasers shine for roughly 30 seconds.
The Marlins president, David Samson, stated if any more home runs were scored, the sculpture would not have been activated out of fear of harming the cat.
Marcell Ozuna, the Marlins’ left fielder, who was the one hit the second of his two home runs just before the cat entered the field of play, said he felt the animal’s eyes on him for a good portion of the game.
“He stayed up there for four innings,” he stated. “Every time I went on defense, I looked up there and the cat was hiding its head. I said: ‘What are you doing up there?’ In the last inning, I didn’t see it. I don’t know where he went.”
Ozuna, whose team managed to win the game 8-4, contested the notion that the cat proved a lucky charm, however. “I detest cats,” he admitted.
Unfortunately, the cat did not make itself available for post-game comments. On Wednesday, the Marlins announced that the cat had eluded capture once again, and run off into the night.
UPDATE: That cat has since been captured and has been adopted, all thanks to an anonymous team employee with a kind heart!