Ron Darling, a former starting pitcher on the New York Mets 1986 World Series team who has been a broadcaster for several years with New York-area cable network SNY as well as Turner Sports, revealed he has thyroid cancer.
Despite the diagnosis, Darling said he is aiming to return to the air in about a month. He had already been sidelined from broadcasts since April for an operation to remove a mass in his chest. During the operation, doctors discovered the cancer.
“My doctors have said they are optimistic that the cancer is treatable and that I would be back on the air talking baseball in the next month or so,” Darling, 58, said in a statement. “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everybody for their continued support.”
Keith Hernandez, Darling’s former Mets teammate and on-air partner, tweeted his get-well wishes.
“My heart goes out to Ron Darling,” Hernandez wrote. “I know that Ron will beat this insidious disease. I’m heartened to hear that his doctors are very optimistic for a full recovery. I will stop at my church this day and light a candle for Ron and his entire family.”
ESPN’s Keith Olbermann saluted Darling on Twitter as “one of the best people out there.”
In addition to his notable on-air work — Darling, Hernandez and play-by-play man Gary Cohen are routinely saluted as one of the top local broadcast teams in the big leagues — Darling has written several books. The latest, 108 Stitches, was published in April by St. Martin’s Press.