CLEARWATER, Fla. – Hall of Famer Mike Schmidt is recovering from an advanced form of skin cancer that kept him from being a guest instructor with the Philadelphia Phillies in spring training.
Schmidt, 64, was in camp Sunday and publicly spoke for the first time about his illness — stage 3 melanoma — and the two operations, radiation and chemotherapy treatments that followed.
“I feel fantastic right now,” he said.
The three-time National League most valuable player plans to join the Phillies’ television crew to work 13 home Sunday games this season, and to return to camp next year to work with hitters.
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“I’m a very lucky man,” the former third baseman said.
A biopsy last summer revealed the melanoma was more serious than stage 1, and Schmidt spent the following months shuttling between a hospital in Boston and his home in Jupiter, Fla.
“I’ve done just about everything I can to destroy the cancer cells in my body,” he said.
• Arizona left-hander Patrick Corbin, an All-Star as a rookie last season, has a partially torn ligament in his left elbow that might require season-ending surgery.
• CC Sabathia pitched five hitless innings and a New York Yankees split squad beat the Miami Marlins 7-0 in Panama City.
A day earlier, a Yankees split squad was no-hit in a 5-0 loss to Miami. The Marlins had one hit Sunday.
• Detroit’s Justin Verlander, making his second spring start, allowed one hit in five shutout innings as the Tigers beat a Washington Nationals split squad 2-1 in Viera, Fla. He had core-muscle repair surgery in January.
Nats pitcher Jordan Zimmermann had his streak of scoreless innings this spring end at nine.
• Cleveland’s Justin Masterson struck out eight in five scoreless innings in a 3-2 victory over the Chicago Cubs in a split-squad game in Mesa, Ariz.