MOBILE, Ala. - Former major leaguer Brett Butler said doctors have traced the cause of his mild stroke to radiation treatment he received for throat cancer 11 years ago.
Butler, who had been manager of the Double-A Mobile BayBears, had a series of tests at Atlanta's Emory Hospital following the mild stroke he suffered in late July.
"One of the arteries on the right side of my neck was a little skinnier than the others and the radiation treatment for my throat cancer produced some scar tissue, which led to the stroke," Butler told the Press-Register in Mobile for a story Wednesday. "It's extremely rare."
Butler and his wife, Eveline, have returned to their home in Phoenix. He was told by doctors to rest and allow his body to rebuild stamina and strength.
As a result, he will not return this season to the BayBears, the Double-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Interim manager Matt Williams will close out the season.
Butler said on a scale of one to 10 his balance is "probably a five or a six." He also said his energy level "is a little bit down."
He has been told by doctors that the recovery time will be about six months.
This was Butler's first season as the BayBears' manager, having previously been a Single-A manager in the Arizona Diamondbacks' organization.
He played 17 seasons with five major league teams, retiring in 1997 at the age of 40. He batted .290 in his career with 2,375 hits and 558 stolen bases. He came up with Atlanta in 1981 and also played for Cleveland, San Francisco, the New York Mets and the Los Angeles Dodgers.