Unfortunately, cancer is something that us as humans have to deal with quite often. No matter what walk of life you come from, most of us know family members, friends, teammates, or coaches who have all been diagnosed with some sort of cancer. When something like this happens, it changes the lives everyone because we understand the battles that the diagnosed have to go through in order to beat it.
For 25 year old Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Jamison Tallion, who was diagnosed with testicular cancer back in early May, he kept asking himself “why me?”. On May 2, while on the road in Cincinnati to play the Reds, Tallion felt a lump, and his mind automatically began racing with scary thoughts of what it could be. The next day, Tallion told the Pirates medical staff about what he had discovered, and Tallion said “It was seriously incredible to see our medical staff hop into action so quickly.” On May 6, after ultrasounds at PNC Park and Allegheny General Hospital, doctors had suspected Tallion of having testicular cancer, and he was scheduled for surgery two days later.
By May 16, Tallion was back with the Pirates playing catch and taking part in cardiovascular exercises. Tallion’s good friend and roomate Chad Kuhl said “it’s therapeutic for him to be out here and be back to normal.”
On Monday, exactly five weeks out of surgery, Tallion made his first start back against the NL West leading Colorado Rockies. Tallion threw 82 pitches in 5 innings of work, giving up 5 hits, 2 walks, struck out 5, and got the win.
Personally, I can’t imagine what it is like to be diagnosed with cancer, and have to deal with all the thoughts that may race through your mind. For Tallion to come out and pitch like he did is a perfect example of how staying focused and mentally strong is one of the most important battles to win while dealing with cancer. Tallion is still going through blood tests and scans throughout his recovery to continue to make sure he is staying healthy, and this process will continue for the next two years. Hats off to you Jamison, and keep battling because you are a hero to a lot of us who love this game.