FlashBack: Larry Hisle’s Rotator Cuff Injury

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In 1982, a lot of folks in baseball were discussing the rotator cuff injury, which was in vogue. Pitchers left and right (get it?) were falling to the injury.

But non-pitchers could suffer a torn or damaged rotator cuff too. Though it was unusual.

Milwaukee outfielder Larry Hisle was the first notable position player to get a rotator cuff injury. It was 40 years agio this week, in April of 1982, that his situation was being examined in a large layout in The Sporting News. Here’s a full-page PDF from that issue of TSN (May 3, 1982):

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Hisle went under the knife in May, shutting down his season. But those were the adolescent days of shoulder surgery, and Hisle never recovered. He was never able to throw a ball or swing a bat pain-free again.

Hisle had one year remaining on his six-year contract with the Brewers. He earned $250,000 in 1983, for a total of $2.1 million. But it was a dud for the Brewers: Hisle played fewer than 250 games for Milwaukee and only hit 49 home runs. He also missed out on the fun in 1982, as the Brewers won their first (and as of this writing only) pennant.

Tell us what you think of Larry Hisle, the Brewers, or what you remember about 1982 baseball in the comments below.

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Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes is the author of three books about baseball, including Ty Cobb: A Biography. He previously worked for the National Baseball Hall of Fame, and Major League Baseball Advanced Media. He lives in Michigan where he writes, runs, and enjoys a good orange soda now and again.
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