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Everything you need to know about the Cardinals’ Rally Cat custody battle

The scandal that has shaken St. Louis to the core.

It all started on Wednesday, Aug. 9. The Cardinals were down, 5-4, in the sixth inning at home when suddenly a kitten appeared on the field:

Soft kitty, warm kitty, little ball of fur …

A post shared by MLB ⚾ (@mlb) on

The kitten was escorted off the field and bit an employee in the process. Everyone giggled at the hilariousness of the situation, but then a miracle happened. On the very next play, the Cardinals hit a GRAND SLAM to take the lead and eventually win the game:

The Cardinals won! The kitten is a hero! But wait, the details get murky after that fateful night.

Thursday, Aug. 10

Initial reports stated that the Cardinals had taken the kitten to the Humane Society; however, the next morning, the Humane Society of Missouri tweeted this statement:

So if the kitten wasn’t at the Humane Society, where was it?

As it turns out, the Cardinals handed over their precious good luck charm and living, breathing animal to a random fan who claimed to be the kitten’s owner. How did this fan sneak the kitten into the stadium? And why was it running loose on the field? How could the Cardinals trust this random fan? Fans had a lot of questions.

The Cardinals responded with this statement about the whereabouts of the kitten:

YEA. THEY LOST THE KITTEN. The woman who claimed to be the kitten’s owner somehow dropped it (probably because it bit her just like it bit that dude at the stadium who tried to carry it), and the kitten went missing. Nice one, Cards!

Friday, Aug. 11

A different shelter in St. Louis claimed to have located a similar looking kitten in a trap overnight. The St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach tweeted this in the wee hours of the morning on Aug. 11:

St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach board member Savannah Wrigley told local station KMOX that there was a good chance they had located the correct kitten:

“Rally Cat has a very distinctive marking on his shoulder, like a constellation of white dots, and also the fact that he was found where the woman dropped him.”

Saturday, Aug. 12

The feral cat was positively identified as the kitten from the Cardinals game. The shelter officially named the kitten Rally Cat. The same day, the Cardinals announced they would be honoring Rally Cat at “Rally Cat Appreciation Day” on Sept. 10.

Wednesday, Aug. 16

A week following the initial Rally Cat incident at Busch Stadium, Ron Watermon, Cardinal’s vice president of communications, updated the situation in an email to a reporter:

“The St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach organization has assured us they will be returning our cat to us after a mandatory 10-day quarantine period.”

When asked where Rally Cat would live, Watermon told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

“Rally Cat will be cared for by our team, making the Cardinals Clubhouse his home. Mike and our players are looking forward to loving and caring for him.”

(You know, because a clubhouse is a good place for a cat to live and the Cardinals took such good care of him the first time.)

Thursday, Aug. 17

St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach responded to Watermon with a fiery Facebook post:

It was a disappointment to STLFCO and many of our friends and fans to read the Cardinal's PR Head Ron Watermon's comments to the media concerning Rally. It was a totally false statement that STLFCO has committed anything to the Cardinals. We have made no decisions about Rally’s long-term placement. It seems inconsistent with “The Cardinals Way” to make such false statements.

They also wrote that Mr. Watermon’s “perceived bullying tactics” shocked them.

In the meantime, St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach said it received thousands of phone calls from people attempting to adopt Rally Cat.

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Watermon responded to the Facebook post in an email:

“It is personally hurtful to me, irresponsible and, frankly, childish. There is no need for the organization to personally attack me for doing my job.”

Tuesday, Aug. 22

St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach posted on Facebook to announce that Rally Cat cleared the mandatory 10-day quarantine period. In its photograph, Rally Cat was seen posing in front of a Rally Cat T-shirt:

I have some great news to update about #rallycat! Rally cat has officially been cleared of quarantine by our vet! He...

Posted by St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach on Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Thursday, Aug. 24

St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach announces that it has hired attorney Albert Watkins for the cat. Watkins tells Riverfront Times that he has made contact with a member of the Cardinals organization about Rally Cat. He says that a phone call took place with Cardinals president Bill DeWitt III and it was “troubling.”

Watkins then made a statement on Rally Cat’s behalf:

The SLFCO is aware of the ability and desire of the Redbirds to commercially exploit Rally Cat. However, commercial exploitation simply must take a back seat to that which is right for this four-legged furry creature.

So what do we know?

  • Rally Cat is still up for adoption.
  • There seems to be little chance that the Cardinals will be able to adopt Rally Cat.
  • Rally Cat Appreciation Day is still planned for Sept. 10.

What don’t we know?

  • Will Rally Cat make an appearance at Rally Cat Appreciation Day?
  • Who is the woman who claimed to own Rally Cat at Busch Stadium, and where did she go?
  • Who is making money off Rally Cat T-shirts?
  • Will a member of the Cardinals go undercover in an attempt to adopt Rally Cat from the shelter?
  • Why are we still talking about this cat?

Only time will tell the fate of Rally Cat. Godspeed, little guy.