Two years ago, the New York Yankees had a twenty-year anniversary celebration of the 1996 team. The 70-year-old Bob Watson, who was the GM responsible for building the team that finally netted the Yankees their first World Series since 1978, was surprisingly not there. New York Daily News Journalist, Chuck Modiano, soon got word from Watson himself that the former Yankees GM was battling Stage 4 kidney failure and that "not too many people know about it."
Watson had a bout with cancer in the early 90s. He successfully made it through that ordeal. His bout with kidney failure, however, may ultimately take his life. Doctors have said that he now has a good 2-10 years left. According to Modiano, just to try and fight off the kidney failure, Watson has had to do seven hours of nocturnal dialysis as often as three times every week.
Earlier in February of this year, news broke that Modiano's children had offered to donate their kidney to him. He declined the offers from both of his kids.
"I've had a good life and I don't want to take a kidney from young people who really need them and still have their whole lives ahead of them," the Houston Astros legend explained, "That would be very selfish on my part."
Watson retired in 2010 after serving as the vice president of on-field operations with Major League Baseball for 8 years. He got a start as a Houston Astros outfielder/first baseman for 14-years from 1966 to 1979 after which he had stints with the Boston Red Sox, the New York Yankees, and the Atlanta Braves before finally hanging up his gloves in 1984. In 1993, he served as the Houston Astros' general manager until 1995. He would then join the Yankees in 1996 as their GM where he became the first black general manager in baseball to ever win a Major series title.