Curt Schilling says he has cancer

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling announced he has been diagnosed with cancer.

“I’ve always believed life is about embracing the gifts and rising up to meet the challenges,” said Schilling in a statement to ESPN. “We’ve been presented with another challenge, as I’ve recently been diagnosed with cancer.”

Schilling recently signed an extension as a broadcaster for ESPN. He played 20 seasons in Major League Baseball, contributing to two Red Sox World Series titles in 2004 and 2007.

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ESPN didn’t elaborate on what Schilling will do for the network this upcoming season after being tabbed for its “Sunday Night Baseball” broadcast.

“Our thoughts are with Curt and his family during this challenging time,” an ESPN statement read. “His ESPN teammates wish him continued strength in his cancer fight and we look forward to welcoming him back to our baseball coverage whenever he’s ready.”

Schilling’s wife, Shonda, is a skin cancer survivor. She had been diagnosed with stage 2 malignant melanoma in 2001.

“Shonda and I want to send a sincere thank you and our appreciation to those who have called and sent prayers, and we ask that if you are so inclined, to keep the Schilling family in your prayers,” said Schilling. “My father left me with a saying that I’ve carried my entire life and tried to pass on to our kids: ‘tough times don’t last, tough people do.’ Over the years in Boston, the kids at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have shown us what that means. With my incredibly talented medical team I’m ready to try and win another big game.

“I’ve been so very blessed and I feel grateful for what God has allowed my family to have and experience, and I’ll embrace this fight just like the rest of them, with resolute faith and head on.”