On Wednesday, the New York Mets released a statement informing journalists that according to Florida law a pig purchased by Yoenis Cespedes at a county fair must meet its untimely demise.
A Mets team official sent an emailed titled, “Pig,” that read:
Can’t believe I’m sending an email out about a pig but we’ve gotten several questions about what’s happening to the pig so I just wanted to make sure everyone has the same info. The animal can’t be taken home as a pet. There is some sort of state law here in Florida that a hog bought at auction must be slaughtered. So, it’s not really Yoenis’ decision. It just the rule. The pig is not a pet.
Cespedes bought the 270-pound grand-champion hog for $7,000 at 4-H Club auction at the St. Lucie County Fair on Sunday night. The power-hitting outfielder displayed his passion for farm animals in other ways during spring training. After arriving at practice in various exotic cars, Cespedes rode into spring training on a horse on Tuesday.
— Yoenis Cespedes (@ynscspds) March 1, 2016
PETA expressed outrage over the Cuban ballplayer helping the pig realizing his ambition of becoming a ham sandwich. Senior vice president Lisa Lange huffed:
Yoenis Cespedes can afford $7,000 out of his own pocket, and this loving, loyal, and clever pig is paying the real price with his life. It’s a shame that Cespedes dropped the ball here and missed the opportunity to send this pig to a sanctuary, where he could have lived out his days in peace. We’re sending Cespedes some delicious vegan bacon in the hope that he’ll open his heart, not clog it with pig fat.
In 2012, the Mets had other zoological problems. After Mets closer Frank Francisco called the Yankees “chickens” before the two teams met on the field, reliever Tim Byrdak brought a chicken nicknamed “Jerry Seinfeld” into the team’s clubhouse. The chicken lived to a ripe old age at the Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, New York until it died in 2015.