Katie Castan has her puppy.
If you’re not a baseball fan, those words may be completely nonsensical to you, so here’s some background. Last week, Katie Castan’s name and image went viral when television cameras spotted her at a Kansas City Royals playoff game. She was holding a large sign that read, in big, bold letters, “If we win, he’s buying me a puppy!” An arrow on the sign pointed directly to her boyfriend, Joe Onofrio, standing next to her.
So, the Royals won, and Katie Castan has her puppy.
Castan was not a Major League Baseball fan at the beginning of the season, which is how the deal between her and Onofrio came about. He was watching a game on TV, and she wanted to change the channel. Onofrio talked her into keeping the game on and made her a deal to give the sport a chance.
Castan described the deal and how it came about to Sports Illustrated: “My boyfriend and I were sitting on the couch at home, watching the Royals game. We were both grumpy after a long day of work, and I wanted to change the channel. So he told me, ‘If you can watch the games with me this season, if you understand what’s going on, if you can name the players, and if they make it to the playoffs, then I’ll get you a puppy.'”
The rest, as they say, is history. The Royals beat the Chicago White Sox on the final day of the season and made it to the playoffs.
Frankly, not being a baseball fan myself, I think that Castan made a bad deal. If I made the effort to sit through a whole season of games and learn the players, I would want the puppy regardless of whether the team made it to the playoffs. It was, after all, a very unlikely deal. This is the first time that the Royals have made it to the playoffs since 1985. Onofrio probably thought that he was making a pretty safe bet.
Bad deal or not, Castan came out the winner. Hopefully Onofrio sees it that way, too.
Originally, Castan planned to visit the KC Pet Project to get her puppy, but after her image hit the Internet, local people started coming forward with offers and suggestions about where to get a puppy. The one that finally grabbed Castan was an anonymous family trying to find a new home for a four-year-old Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Lucy.
“Since a Corgi is the dog of my dreams, we went to meet her and I immediately fell in love,” Castan told television station WCTV5. “We were beyond excited about the opportunity to take her into our home knowing that she could have ended up in one of Kansas City’s animal shelters. Obviously, all of the shelters across the city do amazing work, but it sort of felt like fate that her previous owners were able to track us down through other channels and present us with this wonderful opportunity.”
Onofrio also seems happy with the choice. In an interview with the Kansas City Star, he said of the new household member, “She’s been amazing, she’s incredibly well trained, she’s super loving, she’s a great dog. Couldn’t have worked out any better. It felt like fate.”
Whether it was fate or just really, really good luck, it seems like the three are happy. Lucy has gained a new home, a new family, and a new middle name: “Rally,” as a tribute to the sport that brought the three of them together. As a result of the bet, Castan seems to have gained a new love for baseball, and she looks forward to sharing that with Lucy.
“I’m really excited about Bark at the Park next year, when we can bring Lucy there and she can cheer on her team,” she said.
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