Ron Darling announced on Monday that he has been diagnosed with thyroid cancer, but he shared an optimistic prognosis and said he could return to work as a Mets analyst for SNY “in the next month or so.”
The news came three weeks after Darling, who pitched for the Mets’ 1986 World Series-winning team, revealed that he had not been feeling well and tests revealed “a large mass” in his chest that required surgery.
On Monday, he said the surgery and further tests indicated cancer.
“My doctors have said they are optimistic that the cancer is treatable and that I would be back on air talking baseball in the next month or so,” his statement read. “I would also like to take this opportunity to thank everybody for their continued support.”
Darling has been part of SNY’s acclaimed Mets booth alongside Gary Cohen and Keith Hernandez since 2006. He also is the lead analyst for Turner’s national baseball coverage.
Hernandez wrote on Twitter, “My heart goes out to Ron Darling. 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. I look forward to RJ’s return.”
The Mets said in a statement, “Upon receiving today’s update on Ron’s prognosis, we are comforted to know that his condition is treatable and look forward to seeing him back on the air soon.”
Todd Zeile, SNY’s lead studio analyst, has been filling in for Darling.
Before the leave began, Darling said on the air, “I’ll kick it’s you-know-what. I’m really reporting this for Keith to know he’s going to have to do some extra games.”
Darling, 58, pitched for the Mets in nine of his 13 major-league seasons. In 1986, he was 15-6 with a 2.81 ERA. He started Game 7 of the World Series but did not get a decision in the Mets’ victory.