With a nod to Robmadden1 in the sundeck for psoting this there:
As one of the aces on the Chicago Cubs' staff, Ryan Dempster is used to the limelight. Now the right-hander is going public with a very private issue that's affecting his family.
Dempster signed a new 4-year, $52 million deal with the Cubs in November.
Dempster's infant daughter Riley, who was born on April 1, suffers from DiGeorge syndrome, a rare disease that prevents her from swallowing and digesting food. Riley has been in a specialized Chicago-area hospital for the last seven weeks, and has undergone several procedures that have kept her alive as she learns to swallow on her own.
"The biggest thing with her is it affects her swallowing and secretions," Dempster told the Chicago Tribune. "She secretes a lot of fluid and can't swallow. She had surgery (on May 11) to have the trachea put in and a feeding tube inserted, where they tie her stomach around her esophagus, so it stops stuff from coming back into her."
While the situation takes up much of his time and focus, Dempster has tried to keep his baseball life separate — or at least as separate as possible.
"I don't take it out to the field," Dempster told the Tribune. "I don't think it affects me."
Despite the severity of the situation, Dempster said he did not seriously consider taking a leave of absence from the team.
"I've had unbelievable support from my teammates, from (manager) Lou (Piniella) and (pitching coach) Larry (Rothschild) and (GM) Jim (Hendry) and everybody, (giving me) days off," he told the paper.
While Riley is not out of the woods yet, Dempster calls her prognosis "really good."
"We're fortunate, both financially and professionally, where we can make an impact on her life, and hopefully the lives of others, and that's what we're trying to do."