NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 25: Pete Alonso of the New York Mets speaks after receiving his 2019 National League Rookie Of The Year Award during the 97th annual New York Baseball Writers' Dinner on January 25, 2020 Sheraton New York in New York City.
(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

First baseman Pete Alonso used to own a cat named “Squirrel,” which is New York Mets teammate Jeff McNeil’s nickname.

In 2019, the world learned a whole lot about Pete Alonso, as the New York Mets All-Star proved to be someone that could be one of the league’s greats for years to come. During his rookie season, Alonso hit a major league-leading 53 home runs and additionally drove in 120 runners from the batter’s box. His home run total broke the single-season rookie record of 52, previously held by New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge.

But what people may have not known about the “Polar Bear” is that he had a kitten when he was very young named “Squirrel.” Coincidentally, teammate and fellow All-Star Jeff McNeil possesses “Squirrel” as a nickname.

Alonso’s mother, Michelle, broke the news via Twitter on Saturday.

Both Alonso and McNeil — whether you call them by their respective nicknames or not — will be playing actual baseball very soon. The team’s spring training schedule starts on Feb. 22 with split-squad games in Port St. Lucie, Florida. One squad will take on the St. Louis Cardinals at 1:05 p.m. ET while the other will face the Miami Marlins at 1:10 p.m. ET.

Along with Alonso, McNeil portrayed much talent this past year. The utility player hit 23 home runs with 75 RBIs and a slash line of .318/.384/.531. He finished 4th in the National League and sixth in the entire major leagues in batting average.

The Mets will undergo 32 exhibition games before their regular-season slate commences on March 26 against the Washington Nationals.

Ryan Honey is a staff writer and host of the Wide Right Podcast.