Sad news today for Twins fans, and baseball fans in general: Harmon Killebrew is battling esophageal cancer.
In a statement, he called his condition serious, while remaining optimistic about his chances for recovery in the hands of Mayo Clinic doctors.[jump]
"Nita and I feel blessed to have access to the best doctors and medical care," he said. "I thank everyone for their outpouring of prayers, compassion and concern."
"I have begun preparing for what is perhaps the most difficult battle of my life." -- Killebrew on diagnosis. More to come on MLB.com
"Harmon Killebrew is a great man," the Twins said in a statement.. "The collective heart of the Twins family goes out to him and Nita as they begin the battle against this cancer. Harmon is universally loved, and our thoughts and prayers are with him and Nita throughout this ordeal. We ask that everyone send prayers Harmon's way as he begins the road to recovery."
After signing with the Washington Senators in 1954 as a 17-year-old, "Killer" Killebrew came to the Twins in 1961 and called the old Met Stadium home until 1974. Named to 11 All Star teams, the Hall of Famer was second only to Babe Ruth in AL home runs. We dug around and found some of that batting prowess during a home run derby against Mickey Mantle in 1960. Enjoy.