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Rockies Pitcher Chad Bettis Makes First Start Since Cancer Battle

This stuff never gets old. Chad Bettis was one of the key figures who helped Jameson Taillon on his road to returning from testicular cancer to the mound. On Monday, Bettis took the mound for the first time since his diagnosis in November. The Rockies are far above .500 and hanging onto the second Wild Card spot as a result of an uber-competitive NL West.

“This is a pitcher, when he’s throwing well, will have an impact on the game every time he takes the mound,” manager Bud Black told the Associated Press. “He wants to be a part of this and make a contribution.”

Bettis discovered a lump on his testicle and subsequently underwent surgery to remove the testicle. After passing follow-up screenings and checks he was cleared to report to Spring Training, but a screening in March showed the cancer had spread to his lymph nodes.

Perhaps the most insane part of this story is that, despite undergoing nine weeks of chemotherapy, he was able to keep up his conditioning throughout. Good grief.

“It’s really cool with all the stuff he’s been through he’s back here and ready to go,” teammate Jon Gray said. “I can’t wait to see him compete.”

After making a minor league rehab start, he was able to make his way back to the rotation. He led the Rockies in starts, wins, and innings pitched in 2016, and stands to be a significant contributor to the team as they look to cling to their Wild Card spot and do some damage in the playoffs.

Oh, and he pitched seven shutout innings en route to a Rockies win tonight. No biggie.

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