March 15th, 2013

Tom Seaver Has Lyme Disease, and the Baseball, ID, and Wine Trifecta

In my never ending quest to link up various passions in life — especially baseball and Infectious Diseases — I bring you this news story:

But for Seaver, after months of private denial, the scariest incident came when his head vineyard worker, who has been with him for seven years, came into the house one morning. “I looked at him and I didn’t know his name,” Seaver said. That’s when Seaver’s wife, Nancy, made him finally go see a doctor. After Seaver underwent an examination and a battery of tests, the doctor informed him that he did not have dementia, had not had a stroke and was not terminally ill. He had Lyme disease.

Fans of Tom Seaver will be pleased to hear that he’s doing better. Additional thoughts:

  • His case sounds familiar, as the worst complications of Lyme not surprisingly occur when the diagnosis is delayed for months. These are truly tough cases, much in need of both better treatments and some sort of marker of disease activity.
  • One of the first baseball games I attended in person was this one at Shea Stadium. Eleven strikeouts, no walks, 1 (9th inning) hit — game score of 96! Wow! Probably way more than you want to know about game score here — it’s basically a marker of pitching dominance. Anything over 90 is outstanding, over 100 of historical greatness.
  • But that’s not all: Seaver and his wife own a highly esteemed Napa Valley vineyard (check out the top of that wine bottle), and their limited-production cabernet regularly scores in the mid-90s in the wine press, once scoring a 97. That’s almost as rare as a game score of 96 — think of it instead like an ERA of under 3.00 for the season. And yes, it’s another reason why this Seaver story caught my eye.

Get well soon, Tom Terrific!

One Response to “Tom Seaver Has Lyme Disease, and the Baseball, ID, and Wine Trifecta”

  1. Susan Larrabee says:

    Now can you work on linking up HIV, running and beer for me?! It would be nice if you could work Vermont in there as well. 🙂

HIV Information: Author Paul Sax, M.D.

Paul E. Sax, MD

Contributing Editor

NEJM Journal Watch
Infectious Diseases

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