Marlins mourn loss of reporter Rodriguez

Longtime journalist dies at 42 after battle with brain cancer

Marlins mourn loss of reporter Rodriguez

Juan C. Rodriguez, a longtime Marlins reporter for the Sun Sentinel, died on Monday of brain cancer. He was 42.

Rodriguez, who joined the Sun Sentinel in 2002, received his diagnosis in December 2012 and was given eight months to live, according to the newspaper. Still, he continued to cover the Marlins even as he underwent treatment.

"He always kept moving forward," his wife, Tiffany Rodriguez, told the Sun Sentinel. "He said brain cancer isn't a death sentence, but a way to glorify God and help others."

The Marlins expressed their sympathy via Twitter.

"We are saddened by the loss of Sun Sentinel Marlins beat writer Juan C Rodriguez," the team wrote. "Our deepest condolences go out to Juan's family and friends."

Marlins president David Samson elaborated during a news conference held on Monday to announce the long-term contract for second baseman Dee Gordon.

"I just want to take one minute to mention that it is a great day for Dee -- very excited for the organization and for Dee and his family -- but I'd be remiss if we didn't mention that it's also with heavy hearts that we remember Juan Rodriguez, a great man who worked with the Sun Sentinel and Florida Today, writing about the Marlins," Samson said. "We've known him since 2002, and he lost a very courageous battle with cancer today, and we are thinking about his wife, Tiffany, and his kids, Laura and Ryan."

Major League Baseball's communications department also paid tribute to Rodriguez, writing on Twitter: "With deep sadness, we remember @JCRMarlinsbeat, a true pro, and extend our sympathy to his family. We will continue to #SU2C in his memory."

According to a fundraising page set up for Rodriguez's family on YouCaring.com, Rodriguez learned he had a malignant brain tumor after collapsing at work. He underwent surgery and months of chemotherapy treatments that were unable to get rid of the tumor. Two additional brain tumors later required more surgery and treatment.

Despite those setbacks, Rodriguez not only continued covering baseball but also wrote about his diagnosis. Voices Against Brain Cancer, an organization that raises money and awareness for fighting the disease, honored Rodriguez with a Courage Award last March.

"The courage I have developed over the last two years has been a product of my faith and the countless family members, friends, co-workers, colleagues, and even readers who have supported me in every way imaginable," Rodriguez wrote at the time, according to the Sun Sentinel. "Twitter followers still ask how I'm doing. Knowing I'm still in the thoughts of so many means more to me than I can express."

Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.