FILE PHOTO: Baseball Hall of Fame members and former St. Louis Cardinals (L-R) Red Schoendienst, Bob Gibson, Lou Brock and Ozzie Smith appear on the field before the start of play between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers in Game 6 of MLB’s World Series baseball championship in St. Louis, Missouri, October 27, 2011. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes/File Photo
(Reuters) – St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame pitcher Bob Gibson has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, local media reported on Saturday.
Gibson, 83, sent a letter to fellow Hall of Famers notifying them of his diagnosis and that he will not be attending the annual induction ceremony on July 21, according to reports.
That letter was made public on Saturday and reported by multiple outlets including the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Gibson was diagnosed several weeks ago and is expected to begin chemotherapy on Monday in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, according to his longtime agent Dick Zitzmann.
Gibson played all 17 of his seasons with the Cardinals and won both the National League MVP and Cy Young Award in 1968.
One year later, Major League Baseball lowered the mound from 15 inches to 10 inches, partially brought on by Gibson’s dominating season.
“Get well soon, Bob. All of Cardinal Nation is behind you!” the Cardinals said in a post on Twitter.
He finished his career as a two-time World Series champion with 251 total wins. Gibson was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981.
Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; editing by Sudipto Ganguly