May 19, 2011, 9:13 AM EST
Bob Tufts is a longtime reader of this blog (and my old blog), as well as an email and Twitter correspondent and fellow Primate over at Baseball Think Factory.
He also happens to be a former major leaguer who played for the Kansas City Royals.
He also has been undergoing cancer treatment for a long while and, in light of the news about Harmon Killebrew and his former teammate Paul Splittoroff, is wondering what the hell the deal is with former Royals and cancer:
This news hits me pretty hard and very close to home. Paul was a teammate in 1982 and 1983 in Kansas City, and I also have been afflicted with cancer. As of now I am doing well in my post-autologous stem cell transplant battle with multiple myeloma thanks to the good doctors at Weill Cornell/New York Presbyterian Hospital.
I immediately thought about many other members of the circa 1980 Royals team that had died due to cancer. Manager Dick Howser died in 1987 from a malignant brain tumor, reliever Dan Quisenberry died in 1989 from a brain tumor, reliever Ken Brett (albeit only in KC from 1980-81) died in 2003 after a prolonged battle with brain cancer. Now Splitt – and me. And Killebrew actually played his last season in the majors in Kansas City in 1975.
While acknowledging that he doesn’t and can’t have access to any more than anecdotal information, Bob notes that there seems to be an abnormal number of cancer diagnosis among ballplayers, especially former Royals. He suggests that the MLBPA and Major League Baseball study cancer rates and types among former major leaguers. It’s not a bad suggestion.
- The Phillies have told teams they’d trade Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels 20
- Mark Prior’s retirement reminds us that young pitchers will break your heart 9
- Roy Halladay is retiring 53
- Tony La Russa Bobby Cox, Joe Torre all unanimously elected to the Hall of Fame 48
- Tony Blengino says recent report on Seattle front office is “just the tip of the iceberg” 61
- Robinson Cano agrees to $240 million deal with Mariners (260)
- Yankees agree to seven-year, $153M contract with free agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury (160)
- Report: Mariners willing to offer Robinson Cano a 10-year, $240 million deal (143)
- Report: Yankees have agreed to a three-year deal with Carlos Beltran (125)
- Brett Gardner is drawing “significant” trade interest (112)