Legendary Tiger Kirk Gibson Has Parkinson’s Disease

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Today Tigertown received sad news. Legendary Tiger (see above for his 1984 series-winning home run video) Kirk Gibson has announced that he has Parkinson’s disease.

He does color commentary with the Tigers for their TV broadcasts, but hasn’t been in the booth for Fox Sports Detroit since Opening Day.

Parkinson’s disease is one that takes a toll over time. It is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement. It develops gradually, and although tremors are the most well-known sign, the disorder also commonly causes stiffness or slowing of movement which increases over time. Actor Michael J. Fox has the disease, as well as Boxer Muhammad Ali. 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson’s each year.

Gibson is 57 years old, and beyond his Tiger career has also been the Manager for the Arizona Diamondbacks as well as spent stints as a player with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Royals. He has a .268 career batting average and 255 home runs to his credit.

Gibson released this statement to media outlets.

“I have faced many different obstacles in my life, and have always maintained a strong belief that no matter the circumstances, I could overcome those obstacles. While this diagnosis poses a new kind of challenge for me, I intend to stay true to my beliefs. With the support of my family and friends, I will meet this challenge with the same determination and unwavering intensity that I have displayed in all of my endeavors in life. I look forward to being back at the ballpark as soon as possible.”

Good luck, Gibby.

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