CHICAGO | Schererville’s Bill Bryk was out scouting the White Sox vs. Red Sox game last Monday.
Nothing unusual about that, until Bryk, 62, talked. The special assistant to Arizona Diamondbacks general manager Kevin Towers spoke in a raspy voice, a month after he had surgery in which cancer was found in his parotid gland, part of the salivary gland.
The scouting assignment was Bryk’s first outside his house since his surgery. He originally went under the knife due to suspected cancer in his thyroid gland, which was removed. Instead, they found the cancer elsewhere. He’ll soon undergo radiation treatment.
“I think it’s from cellphone use,” Bryk said. “When I was a field coordinator, I was on the phone eight to 10 hours a day.
“It just kind of puts everything in perspective. My last surgery was when I had my tonsils out at 7.”
Bryk started scouting off TV at home, but finally was out at the ballfield when he had his stitches taken out. He and wife, Jackie, have fielded hundreds of get-well wishes.
“Sitting on the porch at home, listening to the birds, I never did that,” he said of the contrast to the busy-work of scouting. “You kind of appreciate the little things now.”
Some kind of luck: This is the year that has tested the good-guy nature of T.F. South grad Curtis Granderson.
The Yankees’ outfielder broke his lefty pinkie Friday, three months to the day after another pitch broke his right forearm in spring training.
“It’s just crazy,” Granderson told reporters. “You can’t get too frustrated one way or the other about it and hang your head down on it. Keep your head up. It’s done. I can’t turn back the clock any way you want to.”
Mel Allen is Hughes’ next tribute CD: Cubs radio announcer Pat Hughes will celebrate his 58th birthday tonight broadcasting the game at U.S. Cellular Field. He’ll soon get even busier producing the 12th in his “Baseball Voices” CD series honoring Hall of Fame announcers.
Yankees/”This Week In Baseball” voice Mel Allen is Hughes’ likely next project. He already has done CDs on longtime partner Ron Santo, Harry Caray, Bob Uecker and Milo Hamilton. CDs are $14.95, with free shipping, available at www.BaseballVoices.com.
The list: Interesting names from the starting lineups of the first Cubs-Sox game on June 16, 1997 at The Cell. Cubs – Dave Clark, Kevin Orie, Rey Sanchez. Sox – Lyle Mouton, Jorge Fabregas, Mario Valdez, Chris Snopek.