Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times is reporting that Rocco Baldelli got a second opinion on his health problems and that the free agent outfielder may have a far better diagnosis in the near future. It turns out his mitochondria may not be in disorder; Rocco has something called channelopathy, according to a WLNE-TV report (assume sics all around for the poor spelling, awful grammar, and annoying all-caps formatting):
CHANNEL-OPATHY IS A DISEASE INVOLVING DYSFUNTION OF AN ION CHANNEL. CHANNEL-OPATHIES ARE KNOWN TO INVOLVE THE ION CHANNELS FOR POTASSIUM, SODIUM, CHLORIDA AND CALCIUM.
ION CHANNELS ARE CRITICAL TO THE MEMBRANES SURROUNDING EVERY LIVING CELL.
BY THE WAY, THE BALDELLIS TELL ME ROCCO HAS NOT BEEN CONTACTED BY THE RED SOX.
That's Ken Bell reporting for ABC 6 out of Rocco's native Rhode Island, which is why the Red Sox bit was appended at the end. Gotta keep it local, people!
Besides, Baldelli's free agent prospects just widened a bit and the Sox have allegedly been a target all along. If this 'channelopathy' is really a non-progressive and fully treatable disease, perhaps he will be able to be a full-time outfielder and not just a platoon guy. Still, if you believe Wikipedia, channelopathy is just a way of categorizing other diseases like cystic fibrosis, which doesn't sound very good at all. Either way, Walkoff Walk wishes Rocco a full recovery from whatever it is that's getting him down.
Rocco missed most of the 2008 season with fatigue but returned in time to make the playoff roster and even knock a tater tot in Game Five of the World Series. Our own Lloyd the Barber is a huge Rocco fan and will be thrilled to find out this news, as soon as he emerges from his den of Canadian inequity and newborns.
UPDATE: As per Marc Topkin, Rocco Baldelli is encouraged and hopes "to be on the field on a more regular basis.''