Daniel Norris believes in "the power of prayer."
The Detroit Tigers pitcher made that clear in an Instagram post Monday in which he revealed he will undergo surgery for a malignant growth on his thyroid.
However, sportswriters seem to be leery of Norris' faith. Again.
This is the Detroit Free Press' lede on Norris' cancer diagnosis:
Daniel Norris will be put to the test.
His opponent: thyroid cancer.
The Detroit Tigers’ young left-handed pitcher announced on Instagram and Twitter this afternoon that he was diagnosed with the disease earlier in the season while playing with the Toronto Blue Jays and will undergo surgery to remove a malignant tumor in the off-season.
He acknowledged playing baseball helped him deal with the troubling diagnosis and that a doctor determined he could wait until after the season to have surgery.
"I've been debating for months as to how or even if I should share this with people," he posted on Instagram. "I'm a firm believer in the power of prayer. So now, I'm asking for prayers.”
Give the Free Press credit for using Norris' direct quote asking for prayers in the fifth paragraph. But did the Detroit newspaper bury the lede?
The Associated Press appears even more intent on avoiding the faith angle:
DETROIT (AP) — Tigers pitcher Daniel Norris says baseball kept him sane after a jarring medical diagnosis.
The Detroit left-hander announced in a message on Twitter and Instagram on Monday that he kept playing last season after finding out he had a cancerous growth on his thyroid. The 22-year-old Norris said the growth was deemed malignant but he was told by a doctor that he could wait until the end of the season to have it removed.
“I was given the option to shut my year down & get it removed immediately,” Norris posted. “However, seeing another doctor that determined I could wait until the end of the season reassured my gut feeling. Just keep playing.”
Likewise, ESPN waits until deep in its story to mention Norris' desire for prayers.
In all the reports — Free Press, AP and ESPN, not to mention MLB.com — the writers make no mention at all of why Norris might believe in "the power of prayer." That reason would be, of course, his strong Christian faith:
Alas, the media's reluctance to acknowledge Norris' Christian faith — something he discusses freely — is a topic we've covered previously: