By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Jon Lester

What is there to say about Jon Lester that hasn’t already been said? Like other observers, I recommend this Dan Shaughnessy column. And best wishes to this young man and his family. Here’s a prediction: Opening Day pitcher, April 2008.

Update: I like Jay Fitzgerald’s thoughts on the ethical dilemma over whether to report on serious medical matters before there’s an official announcement. No, I don’t know where the line is, either.

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  1. mike_b1

    Where some see a sympathetic journalist, I see a possible ploy. Won’t go into it all here but it’s at

  2. man who's a sox fan

    A survivor of cancer myself, I sympathize with Lester. It’s scary shit, no doubt about it. I, too, had it hit me in my 20’s, which I was told is a major factor in both survivability and full recovery. Hell, I almost view it as a positive…helped me clarify what was really important in life, and I met my now-wife just a few months after finishing chemo.Fortunately Lester’s cancer is, so we’re told, very treatable…and he’s in a town with the #4 cancer center in the USA (Dana Farber) and several excellent cancer wards at other area hospitals as well. I have no doubt he’ll be fit as a fiddle in no time…regardless of whether he ever plays again (although I have no doubt he’ll be back, too…the kid’s got heart)Hang tough Jon – we’re all rooting for you!

  3. mike_b1

    dan, Shaughnessy allegedly called Carl Everett “a cancer on a team” during an online chat exchange at that was later posted to the Boston Dirt Dogs web site on Oct. 5, 2001. The link is here.Draw your own conclusions. Perhaps you apologized too quickly.

  4. o-fish-l

    First, my prayers to Jon Lester for a speedy and full recovery. With that said, what is up with the media frenzy over this situation? I caught NECN’s Tom Ellis all evening Saturday saying “stunned fans” were reacting to the Lester situation with “disbelief.” Granted Ellis “jumped the shark” back in the 80’s but he wasn’t the only media type blowing this way out of proportion, in fact most were.If Lester beats his form of cancer as most others do, he will join numerous other MLB players (Mike Lowell, Derek Lowe immediately come to mind) who have survived cancer and successfully returned to the diamond.”Disbelief” could be used when Len Bias threw it all away on a fatal cocaine overdose hours after being drafted #1 by the then invinvible Celtics. “Disbelief” could even be stretched to cover Reggie Lewis’ untimely death even though his heart had warnined of trouble. 56,000 Americans each year are diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma. At least 1,000 of those are in Massachusetts (Herald – ACS stats). It’s unfortunate that one of them is a Red Sox bit player with high hopes for the future, but it is not cause for disbelief nor cause for wall-to-wall and front page coverage. Get well Jon Lester! Go home overzealous media!

  5. Anonymous

    I agree with Mike. My take was that Shaughnessy’s primary aim was to leverage his family’s dealings with cancer and get Lester’s dad to talk. Cynical perhaps, but certainly something Shaughnessy [and many other scribes] would do.

  6. karen

    My son at 17 was diagnosed with exactly the same kind of cancer (stage 3) two years ago. He had a year of chemo and lost his hair but he said it was one of the most meaningful and best times of his life. He has been in remission for a year-goes for scans today if fact which is always nerve-wracking. So good luck Jon. Sometimes the worst times of our lives are also the best. I know you will recover and go on to be a great pitcher. No-it shouldn’t have happened to all you young guys but hopefully you will see the gifts that it brings you.Good luckKaren

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