Lot to unpack here with Robinson Cano (2B, Fractured Hand; Dumb)… First Cano took a fastball off the back of his hand and suffered a broken bone in his hand, then an even bigger disappointment hammer fell. Cano was suspended 80 games for taking performance enhancing drug. That brings him to an early August return. Yikes. Stash or Trash: Stash. He’s too good for you to drop. He’ll still have two months of baseball once he returns. Fill In: Yolmer Sanchez (22.2%.) Can’t believe I’m still recommending this guy! He’s got a nice 2B/3B eligibility, a .296 average and is hitting 2nd for the White Sox. Great fill in option now, and bench bat for later.
Jeimer Candelario, 3B, Wrist Tendinitis
Everyone’s favorite third base sleeper is having a pretty solid season so far — he’s top 10 among third basemen in runs scored with 21. Stash or Trash: Stash. It’s looking like he won’t miss too much time. Fill In: Yolmer Sanchez — I can’t keep recommending this guy! JK — Daniel Descalso (12.4%.) Descalso had a sub-.200 average as late as April 27th but since then he’s slapped 15 hits in 43 at bats with 6 runs and 7 RBI. He won’t keep this up at all — he doesn’t hit HR or steal bases, but he won’t kill your ratios too much.
Todd Frazier, 3B, Strained Hamstring
The Toddfather is having a very Toddfather season so far: 5 HR, 3 SB…….237 average. Womp. Still, the 18 runs and 21 RBI ain’t bad. Stash or Trash: NL-only/deep leagues, stash. Shallow leagues? It depends on your waiver options. Fill In: One more time — say it with me now — Yolmer Sanchez! Matt Duffy (6.6%.) Don’t forget about old Duffy. In 2015 he was the runner-up for Rookie of the Year after a 12 HR/12 SB/.295 AVG season. Duffy himself had a DL stint earlier this season, but since returning he’s been out for blood! In 58 at bats he has 22 hits for a .379 AVG. Only 4 runs, 1 HR and 7 RBI — but still — you’re just looking for someone to not kill you in deep leagues.
Alen Hanson, 2B/OF, Hamstring Strain
Not to get all hipster on you — but I’ve been cyclopsing Hanson for years now anticipating a breakout. Filling in for an also-injured Joe Panik Hanson has been slugging the ball lately. In 47 ABs he has 4 HR, 3 SB and a .298 AVG. Stash or Trash: Stash. No timetable just yet, but with Panik out until June I expect Hanson to come back soon and return to his previous performance. Fill In: Y-O-L-M-E-R. Niko Goodrum (1.6%.) This is a deep league play obviously, but Niko has a dope name and a nice 4 HR/4 SB/.839 OPS stat line on the year. With Candelario and Leonys Martin on the DL Niko is going to get ABs for a little while. Last year in AAA he had 13 HRs and 11 SB so the power and speed, while not eye-popping, is present.
DJ LeMahieu, 2B, Thumb Sprain
Well this is frustrating. LeMahieu returned from a late April hamstring DL stint and now, after 5 games, he’s back on the DL again. Stash or Trash: Stash. No updates just yet, but DJ is having a typical solid DJ LeMahieu season: 20/5/13/3/.279. Fill In: YOLMER F#&$ING SANCHEZ. Jonathan Villar (12.4%.) This fall hasn’t been pretty, but Villar still has a .282 AVG on the year with 7 stolen bases. If you need an NL-only fill in you could do worse than Villar.
Leonys Martin, OF, Strained Hamstring
Don’t scroll past this Leonys — he’s been actually hitting pretty well this season. He’s got 23 runs, 5 HR, a .294 AVG and is the Tigers leadoff hitter by default. Stash or Trash: Stash. He’s not going to return when eligible on Friday, but he has been pretty solid as an OF4/OF5 bat. Fill In: Travis Jankowski (4.3%.) SAGNOF alert! Don’t forget that this Jankowski stole 30 bases in 2016. Also don’t forget that Manuel Margot has been borderline unownable so Jankowski is going to get ABs as long as he keeps hitting — and hitting he has been. He’s hitting .349 with 4 SB in only 43 ABs so far with 5 multi-hit games out of 10 games started.
Carlos Martinez, SP, Lat Strain
Well this bites. CMart is third in baseball with a 1.62 ERA behind a pair of filthy, cheating Astros, but will now miss an undetermined amount of time with this lat injury. Stash or Trash: Did you read that last sentence? Stash. Fill In: Kyle Freeland (18.4%.) Don’t run away from Rockies pitchers! Freeland actually has a 3.30 ERA in 22 games at Coors Field over his career including a 1.40 ERA in 3 starts this year. He actually has a 4.82 ERA in away games this season mainly due to a 4 inning, 5 ER blow up in Pittsburgh in mid-April. Freeland’s next start will come in San Francisco as he hopes to bring that away ERA down more.
Keynan Middleton, RP, UCL Damage
Middleton had been looking pretty good as the Angels de-facto closer with 6 saves and a 2.04 ERA, but due to poor usage by coach Mike Sciosciapath. Middleton returned from injury on May 10th and Sciosciapath pitched him in May 10th, 12th and 13th as if nothing had ever happened. Stash or Trash: Stash for now, but expect Tommy John to claim another soul. Fill In: I’m thinking Jim Johnson (3.2%) will be the replacement closer in LA. Johnson has 177 career saves including 22 last year with the Braves. Sure, he’s a mess at times — but look at his coach — so is he. SAGNOF!
Marcus Stroman, SP, Shoulder Fatigue
You probably shouldn’t have drafted Stroman to begin with. He’s been struggling with injuries since pre-season. Stash or Trash: Stash I guess. I really don’t think he’ll give you any quality innings for the rest of the year — but hold out hope if you’d like. Fill In: Jack Flaherty (17.5%.) He’s the St. Louis Cardinals fill in option for Adam Wainwright who also hit the DL recently. His ownership is going to skyrocket, but as of Tuesday night he’s owned in less than 20% of leagues. In 80 career minor league appearances Flaherty has a 2.73 ERA and a 9.1 K/9. He’s going to be one of those guys who shows up on a lot of fantasy championship teams.
Ryan Zimmerman, 1B, Strained Oblique
Oh weird. Stash or Trash: Despite the .217 average — stash. He’s got a crazy low .233 BABIP but is still making hard contact 41% of the time. His walk rate, strikeout rate and contact rates are all almost identical to his career numbers so I think we’re going to see a regression to his mean soon — buy low if you can. Fill In: Mark Reynolds (6.5%.) Boom! What a Nationals debut — 2 HRs in 4 ABs for Reynolds. The past two seasons has seen a brand new Reynolds emerge — after having a .230 batting average from 2007-2015, Reynolds saw his average climb to .274 in from 2016-2017. Reynolds is hitting 5th in the Nationals lineup and could have plentiful RBI opportunities hitting behind Trea Turner, Bryce Harper, Howie Kendrick and Matt Adams.
As always, leave a comment below for injury replacement options in your league!