Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg announced Monday on Instagram that he’d been diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer and has begun treatment.
“To my Chicago Cubs, National Baseball Hall of Fame, extended Baseball Family, the city of Chicago, and all my loyal fans, I want to share some personal news,” the post began, going on to reveal that he received the diagnosis last week. “… I am surrounded by my loving wife Margaret, our incredibly supportive family, the best medical care team, and our dear friends.
“We will continue to be positive, strong, and fight to beat this. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time for me and my family.”
An outpouring of support followed. The National Baseball Hall of Fame chimed in with a statement from Jane Forbes Clark, the chairman of the board of directors.
“The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum’s Board of Directors and Staff have Ryne Sandberg and his wonderful family in our thoughts,” Clark said in the statement. “Part of what made Ryne a tremendous talent on the field was his quiet intensity, and we have no doubt he’ll bring the same tenacity to this fight.
“During this difficult tine, we join Cubs fans in Chicago, and baseball fans everywhere in sending love and support to Ryne and Margaret and the entire Sandberg family.”
Sandberg, 64, has remained connected to the Cubs organization long after his legendary playing career, which spanned from the early 1980’s through the mid-90’s. He debuted with the Phillies but spent every other major-league season as a Cub. Sandberg won 10 All-Star selections, nine Gold Glove awards, seven Silver Sluggers and an MVP.
After trying his hand at managing, at the helm for parts of three seasons in Philadelphia in 2013-15, Sandberg returned to the Cubs as an ambassador. Over the years, he’s continued to interact with players and fans at spring trainings and Cubs Conventions.
For all that Sandberg means to the organization, the Cubs are set to unveil a statue of him outside of Wrigley Field this year, joining fellow Hall of Famers Ernie Banks, Ron Santo, Billy Williams and Fergie Jenkins on “Statue Row.”