UPDATE: Sadly, Chase passed away today (July 9).
After an illustrious career, a star member of the New York Yankee’s organization has officially retired. Chase, a 13-year-old golden retriever, served for the past 11 years as honorary bat dog for the Trenton Thunder, a Yankees minor-league team. A fan favorite for over a decade, Chase carried baseball bats to and from the dugouts, brought water bottles to umpires in between innings and, win or lose, always took the time to get a good belly rub from his adoring fans.
But like every athlete, not even Chase could outrun old age. For the last six months, Chase has been battling a form of blood cancer and arthritis. Before he heads off into official retirement, the Trenton Thunder honored their beloved bat pup with an on-field ceremony. The first 2,000 fans received Chase bobble heads.
“He’s a brave dog and I just wanted him to be out there to hear those cheers,” said Eric Lipsman, who is Chase’s caregiver and the team’s senior vice president of corporate sales. “He lived for this. He just absolutely loved to be out there on the field.”
Chase won the hearts of fans and dog lovers alike. He has appeared in a commercial with Hideki Matsui and was profiled by Anderson Cooper. Only time will tell if Chase’s bib will hang in the rafters next to the jerseys of other Yankees greats. Enjoy retirement, Chase!