Double-A Tulsa Drillers manager Scott Hennessey announced he is taking a temporary medical leave of absence in the wake of being diagnosed with Stage 3 squamous cell carcinoma, a curable form of cancer.
Hennessey’s long-term prognosis is optimistic as the cancer has not spread beyond the initial area in his neck. He will undergo several weeks of chemotherapy at the conclusion of the regular season and hopes to occasionally visit ONEOK Field when health permits.
“I would like to say thank you for the heartfelt words of support that have been extended to myself and my wife Deanne since my diagnosis,” Hennessey said in a statement. “I have felt a special bond with the city of Tulsa since my first day here.
“We not only have some of the best baseball fans in the country, but some of the best people. We are going to fight this battle with everything we have, and I plan on being back in the dugout very soon.”
Hennessey is in his sixth season as Drillers manager and 17th overall with the Dodgers organization. “Scott has the support and thoughts of everyone within the Drillers organization,” Drillers vice president of media and public relations Brian Carroll said.
“He has touched and befriended so many people since coming to Tulsa, and he will be missed during his time away. Scott is a great competitor and a winner, and he will take on and win this battle with the same tenacity that he shows in the dugout.”
The Drillers enter play Wednesday tied for first place in the Texas League North with the Arkansas Travelers. Since taking the helm midway through the 2017 season, Tulsa has posted a winning record under Hennessey each year while advancing to the postseason four times.
Drillers players supporting Scott Hennessey
To show support for Hennessey in his battle with cancer, Drillers players will donate several game-used items and auction them during upcoming games at ONEOK Field. All proceeds raised will be donated to The Children’s Hospital at Saint Francis in Hennessey’s name.
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