Sure, it’s the World Series, but frankly there’s a much bigger issue than whether Houston or Atlanta wins. Ask PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) and they’ll tell you it’s time to retire the name Bullpen.

Yes, that area beyond the outfield fence where relief pitchers await a call to come into the game. 

PETA thinks bullpen is offensive to … bulls because it “devalues talented players and mocks the misery of sensitive animals.” Bullpen, PETA says, refers to the area where bulls are kept before being slaughtered, or participating in rodeos. I actually don’t think any pitcher has envisioned being in the “bullpen” awaiting slaughter … although some relief pitchers have actually been slaughtered by the bats of opposing teams.

Instead of bullpen, PETA thinks the area should be called “arm barn.” If we’re going to change the name, I’d prefer ARM PIT.

Are bulls really sensitive? I don’t know. The only reference I find is on PETA’S web site, and that doesn’t site any source.

But now I wonder, is it ok to call the Chicago basketball team the Bulls. I don’t think Chicago is a particularly good environment for bulls.

Well, this isn’t PETA’s first foray into major league baseball. In Cleveland, for instance, PETA has annually protested the annual hot dog eating contest, but this year instead of protesting offered vegan hot dogs as an alternative.

And now, I wonder, how far should PETA take its protest? How about team mascots? 

Should the Arizona Diamondbacks retire Baxter the Bobcat or should the Miami Marlins replace Billie the Marlin. And what about Mariner Moose (Seattle Mariners), The Oriole Bird (Baltimore Orioles), Pirate Parrot (Pittsburgh Pirates), or the St. Louis Cardinals’ Rally Squirrel.

And what about the minor leagues? Here are some to consider: Akron Rubber Ducks; Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs; Toledo Mud Hens; Richmond Flying Squirrels; Binghamton Rumble Ponies; Columbia Fireflies; Hartford Yard Goats; and, of course, the Rocket City Trash Pandas.

While one of my favorite mascots is the University of California Santa Cruz’s Sammy the Slug, I think I favor vegetables – Scottsdale Community College’s Artie the Fighting Artichoke or The Fighting Pickle at North Carolina School of the Arts.

In this day and age when we must be politically correct, we certainly should take into account the feelings of those in the animal and vegetable kingdoms.

So, I’m hopeful major league baseball considers my suggestion to rename the bullpen into the ARM PIT.

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Frank Prosnitz

Frank Prosnitz brings to WhatsUpNewp several years in journalism, including 10 as editor of the Providence (RI) Business News and 14 years as a reporter and bureau manager at the Providence (RI) Journal. Prosnitz began his journalism career as a sportswriter at the Asbury Park (NJ) Press, moving to The News Tribune (Woodbridge, NJ), before joining the Providence Journal. Prosnitz hosts the Morning Show on WLBQ radio (Westerly), 7 a.m. to 9 a.m. Monday through Friday, and It’s Your Business, also on WBLQ, Monday and Tuesday, 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Prosnitz has twice won Best in Business Awards from the national Society of American Business Editors and Writers (SABEW), twice was named Media Advocate of the Year by the Small Business Administration, won an investigative reporter’s award from the New England Press Association, and newswriting award from the Rhode Island Press Association.