CURVE, Pa. - While the Altoona Curve have hosted many Pittsburgh Pirates on MLB rehabilitation assignments over the years (and will do so again tomorrow night with Pittsburgh's Charlie Morton on the hill), they will hold what is believed to be the first MLB Mascot Rehabilitation Assignment on Thursday when Cheese Chester begins his road back to the Great Pierogy Race with a stint at Peoples Natural Gas Field. Chester is scheduled to partake in the Curve's own starchy Panera Bread Great American Bagel Race during tomorrow's home finale.
Chester was on his way to a blowout victory in the Great Pierogy Race on July 23 at PNC Park before a horrific injury forced him to exit the race. Going down about halfway past the Clemente Wall, Chester immediately reached for his foot in visible pain. Physicians rushed onto the warning track at PNC to tend to Chester before he was carried off the field by highly-trained Pierogy medical personnel. As he was being carried off the field, Chester did give a thumbs up to the crowd at PNC Park.
"I'll never forget where I was when I saw Cheese go down," said Curve General Manager Rob Egan, referring to his couch from which he watched the ROOT Sports broadcast. "It will stick with me forever. It was amazing - almost unbelievable - how quickly the medical staff got to him when he went down. It was like they knew it was coming. Thankfully, their intuition helped get him back on the road to recovery."
His was scheduled to be out 6-8 weeks with a broken foot and in his place another Mrs. T's pierogy, Potato Pete, has run rampant during recent Great Pierogy Races. This hopefully will be his first step back towards a comeback before season's end. Since Chester will be racing, the Bagel Race will be slighty augmented and the bagles + Cheese Chester will race around the warning track at PNG Field in hopes that the atmosphere mimics the Pierogy Race held at PNC Park.
"We're honored that Cheese Chester will join us on a MLB mascot rehabilitation assignment for tomorrow night's Bagel Race," said Blueberry Bob, the lovable, yet prone-to-losing mascot who partakes in the daily Panera Bread Great American Bagel Race in Curve, Pa.
"Asiago Allie, Cinnamon Crunch Cindy and I will give Cheese Chester a good run for his money to make sure that he's ready to race in Pittsburgh in the near future."
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.