Chad Bettis makes rehab start after battling cancer, Yard Goats fall to Starlin Castro and Thunder, 7-5

Hartford, CT- On a night featuring several major league players, the Trenton Thunder mounted a major league comeback, downing the Hartford Yard Goats, 7-5, Thursday night, before 5,249 fans at Dunkin’ Donuts Park. It was first place Trenton’s 12th straight victory and 13th in its last 14 games.

The game was highlighted by the appearance of Colorado Rockies pitcher Chad Bettis, pitching on a rehabilitation assignment, as he recovers from testicular cancer. Bettis pitched two innings, allowing one unearned run. He struck out three and did not walk anybody, throwing 31 pitches.

New York Yankees All-Star second baseman Starlin Castro, on a rehabilitation assignment of his own, went 1-for-3 with a single.

Hartford erupted for four runs in the second to take a 4-1 lead on a Jan Vazquez RBI-double, a run-scoring ground out by Anthony Phillips and a two-run double by Omar Carrizales. The Yard Goats made it 5-1 in the fourth on a Carrizales’ sacrifice fly.

But the Yankees’ affiliate batted around in the fifth inning, highlighted by two-run homers by Jorge Saez and Jorge Mateo, tying the game at 5-5.

Trenton won it in the ninth inning, when Billy Fleming delivered a two-run double down the left field line, against a drawn in infield. Branden Pinder, who has pitched in the majors with the Yankees and is trying to make a comeback from Tommy John surgery, pitched the ninth inning to notch his first save.

Carrizales led the Yard Goats’ attack with two hits and three RBI. Vazquez, Drew Weeks and Correlle Prime each had two hits.

Game two of the series is Friday night at 7:05 p.m. Lefthander Jack Wynkoop will pitch for Hartford against righthander Brody Koerner pitches for Trenton. The game can be heard on AM 1410 WPOP and on iHeart Radio. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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