LOWER EAST SIDE — Good thing Kramer didn't have money on this competition.
A chicken named "Little Jerry Seinfeld," in honor of a Seinfeld episode in which Kramer tried his hand at cockfighting, was given shelter at a Lower East Side apartment Monday, a day after being trotted out before the cameras in an attempt to rally the the New York Mets to victory in their final inter-league game against the Yankees.
Despite failing in his duties as a good luck charm for the Mets, who lost 6-5, Little Jerry Seinfeld will not face the same fate that befell his sitcom counterpart — instead getting chauffeured to the home of a caring Lower East Side vegan couple who plan to drive him to an upstate animal sanctuary.
Jeffery and Tisa LaPadula, who live in an apartment on Grand Street near the Williamsburg Bridge, reached out to Mets relief pitcher Tim Byrdak Sunday after Byrdak wrote on Twitter that he didn't know what he was going to do with the chicken after buying him to give a good-natured ribbing to the Yankees.
Pitcher Frank Francisco ruffled a few feathers last week when he called the Yankees "chickens," and according to the Washington Post, the "rally chicken" was originally named "Little Derek Jeter."
But once the joke was over, Byrdak took to Twitter to ask if anyone knew a farm that could "take a chicken off [his] hands" and that he "don't want to see him get whacked...please help!"
LaPadula responded immediately, and got in touch with Farm Sanctuary, an animal sanctuary near Watkins Glen in the Finger Lake region, who agreed to take the bird. LaPadula and his wife also volunteered to drive Jerry five hours north to the sanctuary.
LaPadula, who works in an Upper West Side vegan restaurant, said he's a lifelong Mets fan and has been a vegan and an animal activist for 15 years.
"It's just nice that they [the Mets] did the right thing after they bonded with this bird to save his life," LaPadula said, who also said that their dog, Tasha, is "getting along great" with Jerry.
"He [Jerry] is a little bit on the messy side," LaPadula admitted, "He's young and shouldn't eat much, but when he does it's a little messy and a little smelly."
Jerry will be transported to Farm Sanctuary Tuesday morning and will arrive at his new home in the early afternoon. There, he will be check out at the small on-site animal hospital, and will be released to spend the rest of his days enjoying sunlight, fresh air, and roaming free across the range.
Byrdak posted two videos of Jerry, and tweeted early Monday morning that he was already "missing little Jerry!:("
Even Seinfeld himself weighed in on the chicken dance, writing on Twitter, "if @mets had won I would have championed LJS as our #rallychicken and we'd ride that bird to the playoffs."