PETA Calls on MLB to Rename 'Bullpen' As More Animal-Friendly 'Arm Barn'

As the World Series heads into Game 3 on Friday, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is using the added attention to baseball to call for the removal of the word "bullpen" from the sport's vocabulary.

In a Thursday statement, the animal rights group said the term "references the holding area where terrified bulls are kept before slaughter."

PETA even offered up the "more modern, animal-friendly term" of "arm barn."

Bullpen
PETA is calling for baseball to stop using the term "bullpen," claiming its a reference to slaughterhouses. In this photo, Jose Urquidy of the Houston Astros warms up in the bullpen prior to Game Two of the World Series against the Atlanta Braves at Minute Maid Park on October 27, 2021 in Houston. Getty

"Words matter, and baseball 'bullpens' devalue talented players and mock the misery of sensitive animals," PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said in the statement. "PETA encourages Major League Baseball coaches, announcers, players, and fans to change up their language and embrace the 'arm barn' instead."

PETA wrote in its statement that the term "bullpen" is used in the meat industry, and it's an area where "cows are hung upside down and their throats are slit" before they are processed into food products.

The organization also noted the term is used in rodeos. PETA said, "gentle bulls are tormented into kicking and bucking by being electro-shocked or prodded—all are typically held in a 'bullpen' while they await their cruel fate."

The group also changed its display name on Twitter to "Arm Barn" on Thursday to promote its latest effort.

A tweet announcing the call for a name change said "bullpen" is "a word with speciesist roots & we can do better than that." PETA added that using "arm barn" would be "a home run for baseball fans, players and animals."

"Bullpen" refers to the area of a "bull's pen" where bulls are held before they are slaughtered—it's a word with speciesist roots & we can do better than that.

Switching to "arm barn" would be a home run for baseball fans, players, and animals 💪⚾️ pic.twitter.com/2FzSpDG9mQ

— Arm Barn (@peta) October 28, 2021

Elsewhere on Twitter, reaction ranged from people saying minor league pay and instant replays should be of bigger concern to MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred, while others seemed amused by "arm barn" as a suggestion.

"Arm Barn" makes me think of a barn full of hanging severed arms. Happy Hall🎃ween!!! https://t.co/X74EoBtTWx

— Christina Floriza 🍥 (@rhymeswithibiza) October 28, 2021

I know it's a little overdone to dunk on PETA for being ridiculous, but arm barn?
ARM BARN?!
Was this not workshopped at all? https://t.co/BeVbFxVWiU

— Josh Godwin (@JK_Godwin) October 28, 2021

One user compared "arm barn" to Facebook's reported name change.

Facebook: We're going be the biggest renaming news of the day

Arm Barn: hold my beer

— Angelique Fiske (@angeliquefiske) October 28, 2021

While many social media users mocked the suggested name, "arm barn" had its fair share of fans. Some people even said that while they don't support the rationale for PETA's initiative, they prefer the proposed term over "bullpen."

While its ridiculous to be offended by the term "bullpen," I kind of think "arm barn" is awesome! #BaseBall https://t.co/xYTx4j9IpB

— Darren Blois (@darrenblois1) October 28, 2021

Arm Barn is an objectively better name than Bullpen. Regardless of PETA we need to change it

— Jed Sprague (@JedSprague) October 28, 2021

Thursday's statement isn't the first time this year that PETA has offered a suggestion to MLB. In August, the PETA requested that Cleveland Indians GM Mike Chernoff add a vegan hot dog to the team's between-innings hot dog race.

Noting that the team would be changing its name to the Cleveland Guardians at the start of the 2022 season, PETA said it would also be a good occasion to introduce a non-meat entrant into the between-innings mascot race.

"Will you please add a vegan hot dog mascot to your Hot Dog Derby?" PETA President Ingrid Newkirk wrote in an open letter to Chernoff. "If you agree, we'll gladly buy the Veggie Dog's costume and veggie dogs (sold in your stadium) for all the players."

Newsweek contacted MLB for comment but did not hear back in time for publication.

Update 10/28/21 3:00 p.m. ET: This story has been updated to include additional background information as well as reactions from social media.