Sandy Alderson

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Sandy Alderson Taking Leave From Mets To Focus On Cancer Fight

June 26, 2018 - 5:24 pm
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By WFAN.com

General manager Sandy Alderson is taking an immediate leave from the Mets to focus on his health after experiencing a recurrence of cancer.

Alderson, who was first diagnosed with cancer in 2015, said the cancer returned in April or May. He is currently undergoing treatment and expects to have surgery this summer. Alderson, 70, said his prognosis is good, but he added that the treatment and demands of the job have taken a toll on him.

"It's a matter of rearranging priorities, accepting limitations, temporarily at least," he told reporters at a Citi Field news conference. "My family, as you might imagine, has been tremendously supportive. I have tremendous doctors, so I'm confident this will end up happily. But it's an adjustment." 

Assistant general manager John Ricco and special assistants to the GM JP Ricciardi and Omar Minaya will split the duties in running the franchise's baseball operations.

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Alderson, who has been the Mets' GM since October 2010 and led the team to the World Series in 2015, said he's unsure if he'll return to the Mets after he addresses his health.

"If I were to look at it on the merits, I'm not sure coming back is warranted," he said. 

The Mets are 31-45 and 13 1/2 games out of first place in the NL East. They are 20-44 in their last 64 games.

"I'm really disappointed with where we are and disappointed to have left Mets fans basically in this situation," Alderson said. "I've said many times (I) really do this to make other people happy, and when you're not making people happy, it's difficult."

Mets chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon would not comment about whether Alderson's tenure with the Mets might be drawing to a close based on the team's performance.

"I'm just really concerned for Sandy's health and that he's back with his family and doing everything he can to make sure he weathers this storm the best he can," said Wilpon, who added that Alderson informed him of his decision Sunday.

Manager Mickey Callaway said he and the players only learned about Alderson's setback about 20 minutes before Tuesday's announcement. 

"I think that the players obviously have a lot of emotional attachment with Sandy," he said. "A lot of those guys Sandy brought in. And I'm sure it was difficult news for those guys to receive today.

"Now knowing that he went through what he went through, he's a bad-ass Marine. That's all I can say," Callaway said, choking back tears.