June 16, 2020
He's come in among the newly drafted June 2020 Major League Baseball players with a story that's typically reserved for persons way older than him. At 22 years old, Eric Orze has fought and beaten cancer twice.
He was born in Carol Stream, Illinois, to Rick and Lynn Orze, and has one sister, Stephanie. Eric Orze currently stands at six feet, three inches, and weighs 185 pounds.
Orze knew he loved baseball at a young age, and he'd let his father know it every time the latter walked through the door after a long day at work. The older man still had his briefcase in hand when Orze asked him to play.
LEARNING HE HAS CANCER THE FIRST TIME
He would later attend Glenbard North High School. As a young man, Orze never expected the news he received from the doctor when he went in after a night of excruciating pain in his lower back and groin.
Cancer, the doctor had said. Orze laughed at first because that was never an option the doctor initially listed as an option at first — nor would he ever anticipate it at the age of 21.
Yet the baseball lover was facing a bout of testicular cancer. He called his parents and let them know, and they crossed the country to be with him the next day.
CANCER HITS HIM IN ANOTHER FORM
Orze had the option to travel for tumor-removal surgery or do it in his current state. He took the leap and did the surgery where he was. It went successfully and things looked bright for a few days.
Before long, Orze experienced yet another major health scare. He was having breathing trouble that forced him to go to the emergency room. The fluid was removed, but the doctor observed something else.
A mole on Orze's back led to a visit to the dermatologist where the young man was told that he had skin cancer. Orze couldn't believe it, but he could handle it. Once again, he had a successful surgery.
ATTAINING HIS DREAM IN BASEBALL
He was eager to go back on the field, but the health setbacks meant the Business Administration major would miss a portion of his 2018 University of New Orleans baseball season and all of his 2019 season.
Still, Orze continued to pursue his passion, eventually getting discovered for his heavy fastball. Tom Tanous, vice president of the international and amateur scouting organization, praised the young man in a clip on Twitter.
"This is a kid that will not quit," said Tanous. He later described Orze's talent as a gift. Brodie Van Wagenen also commended the Mets newbie: "He's motivated, and he wants the challenge of professional baseball."
Orze came in with three wins and a 2.75 ERA before he was selected for the fifth round of the MLB draft. We're sure he's going to make a lot of people proud on his new journey.
JIM EDMONDS GETS THE CORONAVIRUS
Elsewhere, MLB's Jim Edmonds has also faced a health battle. In April 2020, Edmonds was diagnosed with COVID-19 despite being relatively symptom-free of the novel coronavirus plaguing the world.
The former professional sportsman shared the news on Instagram and strongly urged his followers not to take the illness lightly. He remained in self-isolation before the results came in.
At that time, Edmonds began feeling better and was symptom-free by the time he got his results. He's since recovered from the sickness.