The saga of "Little Jerry Seinfeld" ended happily when Mets reliever Tim Byrdak handed the suddenly famous chicken and a $500 donation on behalf of the team to Farm Sanctuary, a rescue organization in Watkins Glen, N.Y.
"This is one lucky bird," Farm Sanctuary spokeswoman Meredith Turner said before Sunday night's game against the Yankees. "His life will be filled with happiness, sunshine and fresh air."
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"Little Jerry" entered the Mets' lives -- not to mention the hearts of their fans -- when Byrdak instructed a clubhouse attendant to purchase a chicken Friday before the start of the Subway Series. It was his way of lightening the mood after closer Frank Francisco called the Yankees "chickens."
The transaction was accomplished easily enough. The bird was purchased in Chinatown for $8. But with the team embarking on an 11-game trip, what to do from there?
"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," Byrdak said. "So we needed to find a home for this thing pretty quick."
With the help of Twitter, a safe haven was found. "He avoids a fryer and the oven and everything else you can cook a chicken with," Byrdak said.
"Little Jerry," given to his new handler wrapped in a Mets bandanna, nonetheless made his mark in a short time. He soiled the rug outside the home clubhouse.
Rough outing for Mejia
He was tagged for four runs (three earned), three hits and a walk in one-third of an inning in Saturday's 11-5 loss to Durham. The damage included a leadoff home run in the sixth.
Not surprisingly, Terry Collins got a poor report from Buffalo manager Wally Backman. "When you've got a natural cutter like that, you've got to be able to command it," Collins said. "Wally said right now everything is in the middle."