Cute minor-league mascot, bat dog named after fan vote

BY foxsports • January 31, 2014

Annie Savoy said, “Baby ducks are cute” in “Bull Durham.”

But let’s face it, ducks are no match for puppies.

Just look at that picture from the Twitter post below. No contest, right?

The 6-week-old golden retriever is “Rookie,” the future bat/dog mascot for the Double-A Trenton Thunder.

Fans of the New York Yankees minor-league affiliate in the capital city of New Jersey voted on the puppy’s name, submitting 1,100-plus different names with “Rookie” beating out runners-up “(Inside the) Parker” and “Slugger.”

Rookie will undergo a year-and-a-half of training before officially joining his father “Derby” as the Thunder’s mascot and bat dog. Rookie’s grandfather was the team’s original bat dog/mascot “Chase,” who unfortunately died July 8, 2013.

“With all the young players that pass through Arm & Hammer Park each year, it’s only fitting that we have a ‘Rookie’ here to fetch their bats,” Thunder GM Will Smith told MILB. “The interaction we had with the fans throughout the naming process was outstanding and there’s no doubt that everyone is excited about Rookie becoming part of the Thunder experience.”

Chase was with the Thunder for 11 years, while Derby joined the club in 2010.

Derby and his mate Reba had their first official date at the annual “Bark at the Park” during the 2013 season and they had two puppies, Rookie and his sister, on Dec. 15.

Here’s a 'cute' video of Rookie and his sister as they make their first veterinary visit (H/T Enjoy.

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