Re: Ryan Westmoreland upbeat despite setback
posted at 12/12/2012 7:39 PM EST
In response to craze4sox's comment:
In response to mrmojo1120's comment:
BOSTON -- On July 13, 2012, Red Sox minor league outfielder Ryan Westmoreland underwent a life-threatening surgery due to complications of a cavernous malformation on his brain.
The Portsmouth, R.I., native first had surgery to remove the malformation on March 16, 2010. Between surgeries, Westmoreland slowly began his goal of returning to the baseball field and served as an inspiration to the other prospects in the Red Sox organization.
Since his setback last summer, Westmoreland is doing well and continues to rehab in Boston and Rhode Island.
âÂÂReally good, actually,âÂÂ he said. âÂÂIâÂÂve been seeing some doctors and nothing but good news, which is what I want to hear. IâÂÂm making good progress.âÂÂ
After the Red Sox selected him in the fifth round of the 2008 draft, Westmoreland quickly showed promise as a five-tool player. In 2009, he showcased those abilities at Single-A Lowell and hit .296 with seven home runs, 35 RBIs and 19 stolen bases in 60 games for the Spinners.
But in spring 2010, the malformation in his brain began to bleed and Westmoreland needed emergency surgery. During his recovery, the goal of playing professional baseball again helped him battle through the life-changing rehab.
ItâÂÂs no different this time.
âÂÂIâÂÂm always thinking about [baseball],âÂÂ he said. âÂÂBut weâÂÂre going to take it slow again and kind of play it by ear and see how IâÂÂm feeling. Hopefully I get to go down to Florida and they can evaluate me down there. I hope I get to go down there by February. ThatâÂÂs what IâÂÂm shooting for, but again, IâÂÂll confirm that with the doctors and the medical staff, but thatâÂÂs what IâÂÂm hoping for.
âÂÂIn a way itâÂÂs the same, but itâÂÂs pretty serious stuff and the second time around made it a lot harder. Again, IâÂÂve been able to take a step back and IâÂÂm partially learning from the last time IâÂÂve been able to take a step back and realize whatâÂÂs the highest priority and go from there. ThereâÂÂs no question about my drive and IâÂÂm definitely still optimistic about my future.âÂÂ
Having dealt with two life-threatening brain surgeries, Westmoreland says heâÂÂs better prepared to deal with it this time around. He also realizes heâÂÂs in a different situation than most pro athletes and the last two and half years have been difficult. Despite all heâÂÂs dealt with, he has an amazing outlook.
âÂÂItâÂÂs certainly frustrating,âÂÂ he said. âÂÂBeing what IâÂÂve been through is not your average baseball injury, so that was kind of tough. ItâÂÂs not like having Tommy John or a labrum tear, itâÂÂs a lot more serious than that. ItâÂÂs tough as an athlete, but you have to take a step back and be thankful for what you have. Being alive, certainly at this point, is more important than being a professional athlete.âÂÂ
I have been thinking about and praying this kid makes it back since the original surgery. At this point being alive and having a fairly normal life is much more important than making the bigs.
Good luck Ryan!
Agreed, he has earned a place in our hearts and hopefully on the emerald carpet of Fenway.