ACKERMAN: Gibson news 'uplifting' to Shildt, Cardinals

"Just excited for Bob, the fact that he's pain free and healthy. Not a surprise, as great of a competitor as we know he is."

Tom Ackerman
April 06, 2020 - 12:02 pm
Categories: 

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Cancer, you messed with the wrong person.

Here's a fastball to knock you into the dirt ... from Bob Gibson.

Sunday morning began with a rolled-up newspaper on my driveway. Walked out, grabbed it, removed it from its plastic wrapping. Scanned the front page, then removed the sports section. There he was.

Gibson. And the headline: Throwing cancer a curve

Underneath, the words read like a beautiful Saturday afternoon at the ballpark from Hall of Fame writer Rick Hummel of the Post-Dispatch:

"For painfully obvious reasons, the Cardinals didn't open their home schedule Thursday against the Baltimore Orioles," Hummel wrote. "The good news is that Bob Gibson would have been there if there had been no coronavirus pandemic-fueled shutdown of sports."

Gibson, Hummel went on to report, had his chemotherapy treatments moved from once a week to every three weeks. The greatest pitcher in Cardinals history was no longer feeling pain.

"Really uplifting," Cardinals manager Mike Shildt told me after seeing the story for himself: "Just excited for Bob, the fact that he's pain free and healthy. Not a surprise, as great of a competitor as we know he is."

Related: Cardinals great Bob Gibson fighting pancreatic cancer
Related: PHOTOS: St. Louis street renamed 'Bob Gibson Way' to honor HOF pitcher

Shildt opened his Sunday morning radio show on KMOX with his thoughts on Gibson.

"That he's been able to take this on as well as he has," Shildt said, "and to come out on what looks to be on a good side of it, we'll keep him in our prayers."

Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak also chimed in on Gibson during his weekly segment on "Sports on a Sunday Morning."

"It was great to read and hear," Mozeliak said of the news. "Incredible story. Put a smile on the face of anyone who did get the opportunity to read that. It's just great news. When that diagnosis came down, it wasn't anything anyone wanted to hear.

"But Gibby's tough. Gibby's resilient. And more important, he's obviously got the right support. The treatment that he's doing is working... and that's just wonderful news for all of us."

Hear more in the above clip from KMOX. Keep fighting, Bob!

© 2020 KMOX (Entercom). All rights reserved