Chad Bettis‘ start on Monday night was bigger than baseball.
Last November, the Colorado Rockies right-hander was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Surgery followed, and so did nine weeks of chemotherapy in the spring. And it all led to him taking the mound against the Atlanta Braves.
It was a storybook showing.
Bettis went seven scoreless innings, allowing six hits while striking out two on an efficient 90 pitches. He didn’t even issue a single walk. It wasn’t surprising that manager Bud Black was smiling in the dugout.
For Bettis, he said he was almost overcome by emotion, according to Thomas Harding and Mark Bowman of MLB.com.
“I don’t think I was really in tune with what was going on until about the fifth,” Bettis said. “Just so many emotions, and I was trying to get them under control, but it was taking much longer than was expected. It was great.”
He did all this in the dodgy confines of the hitter haven known as Coors Field. And even though he was credited with a no decision – the Rockies didn’t score until the eighth – this was seen as more than just a victory in the box score.
Bettis is slated to make his next start this weekend when the Milwaukee Brewers visit Colorado. Just in time for a playoff race.