BOSTON—The Boston Red Sox say announcer and former knuckleballer Tim Wakefield is undergoing treatment for a disease they did not specify and asked for fans to respect his privacy after his illness was outed without his consent by ex-teammate Curt Schilling.
The team issued a statement on Thursday after Mr. Schilling said on a podcast that Mr. Wakefield had brain cancer, leading to an outpouring of support for Mr. Wakefield—and criticism of Mr. Schilling. The Red Sox noted that they were releasing the statement with the permission of Mr. Wakefield and his wife, Stacy.
“Unfortunately, this information has been shared publicly without their permission,” the team said. “Their health is a deeply personal matter they intended to keep private as they navigate treatment and work to tackle this disease. Tim and Stacy are appreciative of the support and love that has always been extended to them and respectfully ask for privacy at this time.”
Mr. Wakefield, 57, retired in 2012 with a 200–192 record and 4.41 ERA in more than 3,000 major league innings. He was a part of Boston’s 2004 and 2007 World Series championships and was inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame in 2016.
He has worked for NESN, the Red Sox broadcast network, since 2012 and remained active in Boston charities, including the Red Sox Foundation.
Mr. Schilling, who was Wakefield’s teammate from 2004–1007, retired in 2009.
Mr. Schilling was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2014 and later said it was in remission. He was enshrined in the Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2012, but he fell short of induction in the national baseball hall in 2022, his final year of eligibility, garnering 58.6 percent of the vote—short of the 75 percent needed.