UT baseball player needs new kidneyAssociated Press

AUSTIN - A Texas baseball player born with chronic renal failure has learned that he will need a transplant for his only functioning kidney.

Outfielder Carson Kainer, 21, said his doctor told him earlier this month that the organ was failing.

"My doctor told me that my kidney function went down to 13 percent," Kainer, who was drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the 14th round of the Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft last week, said in a story in Wednesday's online edition of the Austin American-Statesman. "That one kidney that had been doing all the work all this time is starting to give out."

Chronic renal failure is a condition in which kidneys are unable to filter toxins and waste from the blood.

Kainer said Wednesday that he would postpone plans to turn pro and instead return for his senior season at Texas in 2007.

He said he hoped one of his relatives would prove a kidney match, saving him from dialysis or a wait on the transplant list.

"The quicker they do it, the better," Kainer said. "There's a process involved for me to go through - like three months or so - before I can do baseball stuff. Hopefully I can take it slow and be ready for next season."

Kainer hit .364 this season and led the team in RBIs (66), doubles (25), and hits (84).

He would not be the first Texas athlete to bounce back after transplant surgery.

San Antonio Spurs forward Sean Elliott in March 2000 became the first known pro athlete to return from a kidney transplant, rejoining the Spurs seven months after the procedure.