Pete Vuckovich, last year's American League Cy Young Award winner, will be out of action for at least two months because of a torn rotator cuff in his pitching arm, Milwaukee Brewers officials said yesterday.
Vuckovich, who had an 18-6 record last year but faltered in the playoffs and World Series, was examined Thursday by Robert Leach, a Boston orthopedist. Leach recommended eight to 10 weeks of rest for the tear in the rotator cuff.
Leach was the third doctor to examine Vuckovich and all diagnosed the tear in the muscle.
The doctor said surgery might be necessary if rest does not cure the problem. The club placed Vuckovich on the 21-day disabled list, effective Thursday.
"He (the doctor) said the alternative, surgery, could be necessary, but at this time he thought it was best to go with the conservative procedure of rest, exercise and medication," said Brewers General Manager Harry Dalton . . .
The New York Yankees restored 36-year-old pinch hitter Bobby Murcer to their 40-man active roster and assured him he will be part of the team when it begins the season.
Murcer, in the second year of a three-year, $1-million contract, batted .227 in 65 games last season and was used sparingly its final six weeks, leading to speculation that the Yankees might move him into the broadcasting booth for the final two years of his contract. However, Murcer had seven hits in his first seven at-bats this spring and convinced Manager Billy Martin he could be an asset.
The Yankees released catcher Barry Foote, who, like Murcer, had been assigned to their Columbus farm team in the International League over the winter in order to make room for younger players on the roster. Foote, 31, has a chronic back condition, did not play this spring and will be assigned to scouting.