04/21/2004 at 12:00 AM EDT
Jailed ex-Met and Yankee slugger Darryl Strawberry bared his soul in a Florida courtroom on Friday, telling a Tampa judge that he dropped his chemotherapy treatments and considered killing himself because, he said, "Life hasn't been worth living for me." As Strawberry, 39, told Judge Florence Foster, "I'd rather go ahead and kill myself, but the reason I haven't killed myself is my five children." Looking gaunt and humbled, the former outfielder said he escaped his rehab center last month to smoke crack cocaine and to pop pills because he thought the drugs might prove fatal. Prosecutors want to send Strawberry to state prison for violating probation following his arrest on charges of drug possession and solicitation of a prostitute. The athlete is also battling colon cancer, which was first diagnosed in 1998. A new tumor has reportedly developed recently. Judge Foster has set another status hearing in the case for tomorrow, saying that she wants to consult with Strawberry's doctors before she sentences him on Thursday.