Left-hander Michael Kirkman was placed on the Rangers disabled list after a diagnosis for lymphoma (skin) cancer. The diagnosis was a recurrence from a previous issue in the same area in January 2012.
The cutaneous lymphoma is located on his right triceps. Kirkman explained that the new cancer is “about two millimeters outside of where the original spot was they had to radiate last year.”
And like last year’s, the skin cancer will be treated with radiation sessions, as well as intravenous therapy. It was discovered during a routine screening in May by the team’s doctors.
Kirkman added that he is not sure when his radiation treatment will begin, but that he will be on the DL for the time being to give himself a mental break. However, the player added that he hopes to continue playing baseball during the radiation treatment process.
He hopes to be back with the Rangers in a couple of weeks. Michael Kirkman also explained that he believes himself to be more prepared for the challenge of treatment while playing this time, since he has been through lymphoma cancer before. He added:
“I probably see it as less of a thing as it is. Other people see it as more than what it is. It’s just kind of one of those things. It’s kind of a blessing in disguise. I can take a step back, take a mental break and work some bugs out.”
Thad Levine, the Rangers’ assistant general manager, explained that Kirkman was having pitching issues after learning of the diagnosis. Because of his understandable concentration issues, the team was willing to go to what lengths they could to help their 26-year-old pitcher.
Levine added, “He reached out to us and asked if he could take some time down. He has had difficulty succeeding.” While Michael Kirkman is on the DL, the Rangers picked up Kyle McClellan from Round Rock and transferred Joakim Soria to a 60-day DL.