Former New York Yankee and 1993 National Baseball Hall of Fame inductee Reggie Jackson poses on the field at ARM & HAMMER Park with Thunder bat dogs Derby (left) and Rookie (right).
If Archie, Peyton, and Eli Manning are considered the first family of quarterbacks, then Chase, Derby, and Rookie would hold the same distinction as bat dogs. The Thunder's "World Famous" bat dogs have been featured on various local, regional, national, and international media, including an ESPN E:60 special titled, "The Family Business."
In addition to Derby with the Thunder, Chase had another son, Ollie, who followed in his father's paw steps with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats Baseball Club until his retirement in 2016.
Chase "That Golden Thunder" (2000-2013)
Chase entertained fans at Trenton Thunder games from 2002 until his retirement in July 2013. Chase, the original team bat dog, was a favorite with the fans, players, umpires, and various celebrities who visited ARM & HAMMER Park during the 10 years that Chase was part of the Thunder experience. During his time with the Thunder, Chase was featured worldwide on CNN and Japanese Television, nationally on ESPN, FOX, and the YES Network and regionally on FOX-29, KYW-3, UPN-9, News 12 NJ, and Today in New York on WNBC-4…plus Chase has had his picture in Sports Illustrated and newspapers all over the country. When Chase passed away in 2013, news of his death spread around the world via social media and local, national and global news media.
"Home Run" Derby (2008-2018)
Chase's son, "Home Run" Derby, was introduced to Thunder fans as a puppy in 2008. Starting in 2010, Derby shared the bat dog duties with his dad. In 2013, he took over as the lone bat dog and brought water out to the umpires during the game. Derby continued to work out with the players in the bullpen and the outfield during pre-game warm-up and pose for pictures with the fans during & after games. In January of 2018, Derby passed away, and much like his father the baseball world paid their respects to the legendary bat dog.
The legacy that Chase began in 2002 continued to a third-generation when Derby's son, Rookie, was born on December 15, 2013. Rookie made his debut at ARM & HAMMER Park on Opening Day 2014 when then Thunder Manager Tony Franklin brought him out to home plate before the game for the lineup exchange. Since then, Rookie has joined Derby as they entertain fans of all ages at the ballpark and throughout the community. He has also assumed bat dog duties and can be seen perfecting his craft in the first inning of most Thunder home games.
Rookie is presented by Arm & Hammer Pet Products. Their health & wellness is taken care of by the great staff at Newtown Veterinary Hospital. Rookie's training is provided by Shelly's School for Dogs at the Green Leaf Pet Resort and Hotel.