The Boston Red Sox have confirmed that Wakefield is receiving treatment for an undisclosed ailment and have pleaded with fans to respect the former pitcher’s privacy following Curt Schilling’s disclosure of Tim Wakefield’s illness without his permission.
After Schilling exposed Wakefield’s illness on a podcast on Thursday, the Red Sox released a statement, sparking an outpouring of sympathy for Wakefield and criticism of Schilling.
“We are aware of the statements and inquiries about the health of Tim and Stacy Wakefield,” the Red Sox said. “Unfortunately, this information has been shared publicly without their permission. 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.”
Wakefield, 57, finished his major league career in 2012 with a 200-192 record and a 4.41 ERA over more than 3,000 innings. The knuckleballer was a member of Boston’s World Series title teams in 2004 and 2007, and he was inducted into the organization’s Hall of Fame in 2016.
Wakefield continues to be involved in Boston organizations, including as the Red Sox Foundation, and has worked for NESN, the Red Sox broadcast network, since 2012.
Wakefield’s colleague Schilling from 2004 to 2007 retired in 2009. Before being fired in 2016 for his anti-transgender social media rants, he was an ESPN analyst.
In 2014, Schilling had a throat cancer diagnosis; he later declared it to be in remission. He was inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame in 2012, but in 2022, his final year of eligibility, he was denied election into the National Baseball Hall of Fame after receiving only 58.6% of the vote, which was well below the required 75%.