Curt Schilling Announces He Has Cancer In ESPN Statement

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Schilling Diagnosed With Cancer


Former star pitcher turned television analyst Curt Schilling announced Wednesday that he is battling cancer.

The 47-year-old Schilling, who spent 20 years in the major leagues before retiring in 2009, divulged the news in a statement released through his employer, Bristol-based ESPN. It did not indicate what type of cancer Schilling has, when he was diagnosed or what his prognosis might be.

"With my incredibly talented medical team I'm ready to try and win another big game," he said. "I've been so very blessed and I feel grateful for what God has allowed my family to have and experience, and I'll embrace this fight just like the rest of them, with resolute faith and head on."

ESPN spokesman Mike Soltys said Schilling is taking a leave of absence. He recently signed a multiyear contract extension with the network and was to be part of the "Sunday Night Baseball" broadcast team, as well as contribute to the network's studio coverage, including its spring training coverage, Soltys said.

"Our thoughts are with Curt and his family during this challenging time," the Bristol-based network said in a statement. "His ESPN teammates wish him continued strength in his cancer fight and we look forward to welcoming him back to our baseball coverage whenever he's ready".

Schilling played for five teams during his Major League career. He won three world championships, with the Arizona Diamondbacks (2001) and Boston Red Sox (2004, 2007), sharing the World Series MVP award with teammate Randy Johnson in 2001.

He won 216 games and struck out 3,116 batters during his career, but is perhaps best known for pitching in the 2004 ALCS and World Series after having stitches to mend an ankle injury. His bloody sock was later put on display in Cooperstown.

Schilling has been in the news recently after the failure of 38 Studios, a video game company he owned in Rhode Island, with the help of a $75 million state loan. The company went bankrupt last year, leaving Rhode Island taxpayers on the hook to pay back tens of millions of dollars.

Schilling said he invested and lost as much as $50 million.

This is not the first time he and his family have battled health issues.

Schilling recently revealed he suffered a heart attack in November 2011. His wife, Shonda, successfully battled melanoma in 2001.

His daughter, Gabby, took to Twitter Wednesday to ask for prayers for her father.

"So i guess the word is out, if everyone could just keep my dad and family in their prayers it would mean a lot!" she wrote.

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Curt Schilling Announces He Has Cancer In ESPN Statement
Former Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Curt Schilling is seen during a baseball game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Atlanta Braves on Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, in Philadelphia. Schilling was inducted into the Phillies Wall of Fame during alumni ceremonies. (AP Photo/Michel Perez)
Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling looks on after being introduced as a new member of the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame before the baseball game between the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park in Boston Friday, Aug. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling looks on after being introduced as a new member of the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame before the baseball game between the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park in Boston Friday, Aug. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
FILE - In this Aug. 3, 2012 file photo, former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling sits with his wife Shonda, right, after being introduced as a new member of the Red Sox Hall of Fame before a baseball game between the Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park in Boston. Schilling, whose video game company collapsed into bankruptcy, is selling off furniture, sports collectibles and even artificial plants from his Massachusetts home. An estate sale company has scheduled a sale of items from Schilling's seven-bedroom, 8,000-square-foot Medfield residence for Saturday, Oct. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson, File)
Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling looks on after being introduced as a new member of the Boston Red Sox Hall of Fame before the baseball game between the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins at Fenway Park in Boston Friday, Aug. 3, 2012. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
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