FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — Boston Red Sox minor league outfielder Ryan Westmoreland will undergo brain surgery after being diagnosed with a cavernous malformation.
The Red Sox announced Saturday night that the 19-year-old Westmoreland, one of the team's top prospects, has taken medical leave from minor league camp to seek treatment.
A cavernous malformation of cavernoma is a cluster of abnormal or dilated blood vessels that effects the central nervous system. Symptoms can include bleeding in the brain, seizures and headaches.
Westmoreland left minor league camp March 4, the team says, and was diagnosed the next day at Massachusetts General Hospital.
He is scheduled to have surgery on Tuesday in Phoenix.
"The entire Red Sox organization stands in support of Ryan as he courageously deals with this issue," Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein said. "Ryan is a remarkable kid and a talented player, and we understand that many will be concerned about his health. He is getting the best medical attention the world has to offer, and we will have more information soon. Until then — out of respect for Ryan's privacy and at the request of the Westmoreland family — we will not have any further comment."
The Red Sox drafted the 6-foot-2, 212-pound Westmoreland in the fifth round last year. He was ranked the No. 1 prospect in Boston's farm system by Baseball America.
A resident of Portsmouth, R.I., he was projected to begin this season playing Class A ball.