Mets watch runaway Central Park horse

June, 10, 2014
Jun 10
NEW YORK -- A pair of Mets were spending part of Monday's off-day at Central Park when they instead must have felt like they were standing on the track at Belmont ... or at least on the Yonkers Raceway track with the trotters.

A riderless, runaway horse reportedly named Pumpkin and its carriage whizzed by outfielder Matt den Dekker and reliever Vic Black, prompting den Dekker to subsequently tweet: "Almost got ran over by a horse carriage running wild through the city."

The experience was a little unnerving. Black tweeted after the incident: "Nothing better than a runaway Clydesdale with a carriage to really scare you."

Den Dekker told on Tuesday afternoon the horse and carriage whizzed by "not that close -- maybe five feet away."

The horse and carriage eventually struck a taxi as it was pinned by a man riding a bicycle, damaging the taxi door but ending the episode.

According to the Daily News, den Dekker was the passenger in that taxi. But Black and den Dekker said that part is completely untrue.

"It ran by us, so I followed it down the street to see what it hit," den Dekker said.

Said Black: "We were just walking around the city yesterday and got on the back side of the park and sat down because I had to make a phone call. The next thing you know the horse is flying by super fast and some guy is chasing him on a bicycle. So Matt got up and went after it, trying to get a picture. I ended up staying there because I had to finish a phone call. That photo (below) was of when the carriage flew by one of the cabs, it knocked one of the doors back.”

So den Dekker wasn’t in the cab when it was struck by the horse?

“No,” Black said. “He chased it, which was quite comical.”

Chasing it as in trying to be a good Samaritan by stopping the runaway horse?

“No, he was just trying to get a picture of it,” Black said. “We saw a guy on a bicycle just chasing after it and couldn’t catch up.”

Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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