Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos 'Cookie' Carrasco is battling leukemia

The Venezuelan player was diagnosed in May and said he hopes to be playing again by the end of July.
Image: Carlos Carrasco
Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco in the Indians dugout on May 25, 2019, at Progressive Field in Cleveland, Ohio..Frank Jansky / Icon Sportswire via Getty Images file

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By Nicole Acevedo and Associated Press

CLEVELAND — Indians starting pitcher Carlos "Cookie" Carrasco is being treated for leukemia but remains hopeful he’ll pitch again this season.

Carrasco told a TV station in the Dominican Republic about his condition on Friday while he was visiting patients at a hospital.

The 32-year-old right-hander from Venezuela hasn’t played for Cleveland since May 30. He says he got a blood test after a spring-training physical that prompted some concerns, and he was diagnosed with leukemia in May.

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“I never thought that I would have something like this, because I play baseball, I’m like super healthy or something like that,” Carrasco says in a video posted on the Indians’ Twitter account. “But you never know what’s going on inside your body."

Leukemia is a type of cancer that affects the blood and bone marrow. There are numerous forms of the disease, many of which are highly treatable.

Carrasco told the Dominican station that doctors “saw something different in my blood," and received more tests before he and his wife were given the diagnosis.

He said he feels positive about his prognosis and hopes to be back with the team “at the end of July.”

Major League Baseball posted a tweet saying, "We wish Carlos Carrasco a full recovery with his battle with Leukemia."

The hashtag #CookieStrong trended Saturday after the news went viral.

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