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Hero cat that saved boy takes the pitcher's mound

By Scott Smith

Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 09:16 p.m. HST, May 16, 2014

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. » A family's cat captured in a viral video saving a Central California boy from a dog attack has another challenge ahead, but this time from the pitcher's mound.

Dan Besbris of the Bakersfield Blaze minor league baseball team said Friday that the cat named Tara will throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the next home game. Besbris wouldn't reveal how they expect to pull off the stunt, hoping to heighten interest. Tara has already proven she's exceptional, he said.

"It sounds crazy," Besbris said. "But we've got a trick up our sleeve."

The video that's garnered millions of views online shows the 4-year-old in front of his family's Bakersfield home when the neighbor's dog bites his leg and violently shakes him. Tara darts in, pouncing on the dog, which runs away.

The boy's father, Roger Triantafilo, said his family has accepted the ball team's invitation.

Triantafilo said he edited the video captured by his home security cameras and posted it on YouTube — his first — for family and friends to see. He never anticipated the flood of attention.

Tara, who followed him and his wife, Erica, home from the park one night, is now the family's hero, and they are smothering her with love, Triantafilo said.

"We've just given her a lot of love, kept her in the house and paid a lot of attention to her," he said.

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den wrote:
$1 bet the cat throws a dirt ball.
on May 16,2014 | 03:24PM
Kyle_K wrote:
You mean a hair ball.
on May 16,2014 | 03:35PM
den wrote:
jocularity jocularity
on May 16,2014 | 04:17PM
Skyler wrote:
You beat me to it.
on May 16,2014 | 06:11PM
HanabataDays wrote:
I don't know if pitcher's her natural position. I think she'd be a hell of a shortstop though. Truthfully, the ESPN highlight I can easily picture is tie game, two down in the bottom of the ninth, her barreling for home down the third base line and knocking the waiting catcher halfway down the dugout steps, scoring the walk-off game winner.
on May 17,2014 | 03:33AM
salliedee wrote:
The video I saw -- supposedly the first one -- showed the dog grabbing the boy's clothing, and the voice over said the dog grabbed the boy's pants and was dragging him off his trike when the cat came and chased away the dog. The mom then came and knelt to pick up the kid and the dog was nowhere near the mom. What's with all this "biting" stuff??
on May 17,2014 | 07:10AM
HanabataDays wrote:
I think you must have misheard the voiceover the first time. Wasn't that when your dog was barking so loud at Mrs. Mamagoto next door? No wonder.
on May 17,2014 | 07:46AM
localguy wrote:
You must have watched the wrong video. Go back to Youtube and you will see the right one. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RAlHzM6mgo Cat really opened a can of Whoop A s s on the dog. Later news said the dog was put down.
on May 17,2014 | 08:25AM
cojef wrote:
Same ole story line, cat betters dog again. It's a natural phenomenon and have witnessed many sparring matches like this. Of course, not involving a little boy/
on May 17,2014 | 08:02AM
saywhatyouthink wrote:
The cat deserves the attention, it's got to be one in a million.
on May 17,2014 | 06:58PM
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