San Diego State Aztecs baseball coach Tony Gwynn, a 20-year MLB veteran, is on leave from the team due to health issues.
San Diego State Aztecs baseball coach Tony Gwynn is on leave from the team due to health issues.
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Troy Hirsch of Fox 5 San Diego reports on April 22 that Gwynn has been on leave for a month due to ongoing cancer treatment:
"San Diego head coach Tony Gwynn left the baseball team about four weeks ago after cancer treatments caught up with him, according to an athletic department official Monday.
"The sports information director for the baseball team said Gwynn had been getting treatments for cancer on Mondays and decided to take time off.
"Since the 53-year-old left the team, there hasn't been any word on when, or if, he will return to the Aztecs, the sports information director said.
"Mark Martinez has taken over as interim head coach, just as he did back in 2012 when Gwynn had surgery to remove a tumor from his cheek.
"Gwynn has battled numerous health issues, including cancer of a salivary gland, which he had both lymph nodes removed in 2010. He attributed his cancer to dipping tobacco."
The Aztecs issued a statement on Gwynn's situation via UTSanDiego.com's Kirk Kenney:
"Coach Gwynn has been on medical leave of absence from the San Diego State baseball program since March 24. Prior to that period, health issues had forced him to intermittently be away from the program.
"During his absence, members of the Athletic Department staff have been in contact with Tony and his wife. At his request SDSU has not nor will it comment on his medical condition.
"Tony, his family and the San Diego State community appreciate your understanding during this time."
When Kenney was also able to reach Gwynn by phone on Tuesday, the San Diego Padres legend said he's doing fine.
"I have no comment, other than to say I'm doing good. That's all I can say.
"But nobody believes me because there hasn't been any information out there. But trust me, I'm doing good."
Gwynn then tells Kenney he does not know if he will be able to return in time before the Aztecs close out the regular season with just four weeks left to play.
"That I don't know. That's the truth. I don't know. I know I'll be back to talk to the team. I just don't know if I'll be back coaching. I don't know.
"I'd like to be there. The team's playing too well this year to to not be a part of this. I would like to be a part of it. I just don't know. We'll see."
The Aztecs currently have a 29-12 win-loss record, their best in 30 years. They will take on the San Jose State Spartans in a three-game series which begins this weekend, per Kenney.
Gwynn spent his entire career with the Padres from 1982-2001. He is a 15-time MLB All-Star, eight-time National League batting champion, five-time Gold Glove award winner and seven time Silver Slugger award winner, according to Baseball-Reference.com.
He amassed 3,141 hits, 1,138 RBIs and 135 home runs on a .338 batting average during his tenure with the Padres, per ESPN stats.
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