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Matt Wieters loves his cat

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I think I’m going to have to start a Ballplayer Pet Hall of Fame. Not for the pets themselves — all pets are Hall of Famers in my book — but for the ballplayers who have the good taste to love cats, which most of you know is my pet of choice.

Matt Duffy is already in there. Mat Latos and his cat, Cat Latos. Greg Bird and Mr. Delicious. Kevin Kiermaier is not an inductee, but there’s going to be a large instructional exhibit about him given his past issues with cats. Kind of a cautionary tale thing.

The latest inductee: Nationals catcher Matt Wieters, who posed with his pet kitty Jalapeño in the Nationals team pet calendar, the proceeds of which go to the Humane Rescue Alliance of Washington, D.C.:

As the Post notes, he’s the only cat guy on there. Which is weird. I mean, yes, I understand the appeal of a good dog (they’re all good dogs, Brent), but you’d think that more ballplayers would like cats given how much easier it is to travel when you have cats. Ten game road trip? Have the neighbor feed the thing, like, twice. No problem.

Oh well. To each his own. But kudos to Wieters for representing Cat Nation. Even if doing so means that Jalapeño now needs months of therapy after being dragged out of its house and driven to the ballpark for a photo shoot. Cats are great, but my God they’re a pain in the butt sometimes.

(thanks to Wes for the heads up)

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.