This is the second time in two years that Gwynn has developed a malignant growth in his right cheek. He blames smokeless tobacco for the cancer; he dipped during his entire 20-year career with the San Diego Padres and for 10 years after that as well.
Since the 2010 operation, however, Gwynn has not used smokeless tobacco, instead opting for a doctor-approved synthetic dip that he said "tasted awful." But last month, the cancer returned, according to ESPN.
Doctors do not believe the cancer has spread outside of Gwynn's salivary gland, Gwynn's wife told ESPN. During the operation, doctors will conduct further biopsies of Gywnn's parotid gland, she said.
Gwynn is currently the baseball coach at San Diego State.
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