Well, here we go again. More injuries to mull over. Let’s rip this Band-Aid off.
Note: The writers cover injuries throughout the week, so if you’re looking for an update on a player not mentioned here, slap their name into the ol’ search bar and give it a look-see. I’m just here to give you the latest injury buzz for the week, but that doesn’t necessarily mean I’ll be mentioning everyone you care about each time.
Ke’Bryan Hayes: Just when we had positive news about Hayes finally swinging again, that swinging just served to re-aggravate his wrist injury. He’ll have to be re-examined before we know for sure what the next steps are. I, for one, do not have a good feeling about this. If all it took were some non-game-situation swings to make that wrist feel worse, there can’t be good news around the corner. Reports came out yesterday that he was feeling better after getting some treatment, buuuuuut I’d plan for a long-term replacement at 3B if I were you. Fellow Bucs Phillip Evans and Erik Gonzalez have done a pretty swell job filling in.
Dinelson Lamet: Lame-T only lasted 29 pitches after finally making his 2021 debut. Writing has been on the wall for months now, one just merely had to glance in that direction; yet, the Padres are being stubborn af and refusing to say Lamet needs an MRI. The man needs an MRI, and said MRI would likely reveal what everyone else has to know at this point: Lame-T almost certainly will not pitch again for a very long time.
Cody Bellinger: Here’s some good news at least: Beli took batting practice on Thursday. That’s of course a step in the right direction, but don’t go thinking he’ll be back this week. Hairline fractures still need time to heal, but this kind of light activity is okay to do. Getting cleared for games is a different beast. No timetable at the moment.
Juan Soto: In terms of player pedigree, Soto should have been the headliner, but I really just loved my Hayes pun too much not to go that route. Soto is on the IL with a shoulder injury, but reports indicate it’s not very serious. I’m of a mind to treat all shoulder injuries as very big deals. Sounds like he’ll be back in a week, though. There’s only discomfort when throwing and none when hitting. Of course, there could be setbacks. Often that’s the case with shoulders. So we’ll see, but right now there’s at least a light at the end of the tunnel.
Christian Yelich: Old Yellerch ain’t coming off the IL today even though he’s eligible. That’s the poo poo news. The non-poo poo news is it’s sounding like he’s at least improving and should be back sooner rather than later. That’s about all we know for now.
Mike Trout: The GOAT took a pitch to the elbow Thursday which caused a lot of visible pain. Still, Trout was initially scheduled to suit up Friday but instead was a late scratch. I fully expect him to play today, but if he happens to need another day then surely he’s back tomorrow. Even GOATs need rest from time to time. But seriously, the fact he was even initially in the lineup yesterday means he’s gonna be fine.
Stephen Strasburg: I had to risk it for the TGFBI biscuit, so Strasburg was my SP1 after fading for a few rounds. He’s already burned me, ending up where he usually does: the IL. Shoulder inflammation. He had a dandy of a first start (6 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 8 K) then a turd of a second start (4 IP, 8 H, 7 ER, 5 BB, 3 K). Something was amiss that second time, and now we know what it was. There’s no timetable right now. He’s doing some light throwing and that’s about it.
Lance Lynn: Lynn has wound up on the IL as well. At least it’s a new injury (strained
trapezoid trapezius), which is a welcome diversion from the monotony of shoulders and elbows and forearms and hamstrings and obliques I keep reading about. Dude is crushing it so far this year, rocking an identical ERA and WHIP (0.92) with a K:BB of 27:2 in 19.2 IP. A current 13.5% swinging strike rate is a career-high, as is his 35.1% K rate. Should be back this coming week for his April 27 start vs. DET. More like Lance Wynn, amirite?!
Starling Marte: Marte hit the IL back on Tuesday after the team discovered a rib fracture. Could be a decently lengthy absence. Still waiting on an official update, so stay tuned. Lewis Brinson should see more time in the interim. Not sure I’d bother with him at this point.
Brian Anderson: A fellow fantasy-relevant Marlin is on the IL as well. Anderson is out with a strained oblique. I’m an obligatory Anderson fan since he’s a Razorback alum, so I’m bummed he’s out. Also off to a very slow start at the plate, hitting just .183 with 1 HR and 5 RBI. Expect to see Jon Berti get more reps for now, so that’s a guy you need to go and snag if you’re lacking speed.
Luke Voit: Voit is still a little while from a return, but he’ll report to the alternate site this coming week, so he’s progressing rather well. Won’t be too long at this point. Maybe a couple-ish weeks? Mike Ford has been the guy at 1B lately for two reasons: 1). Jay Bruce up and retired and 2). D.J LeMahieu slid over to 2B because Rougned Odor sucks.
Miguel Sano: Sano is on the IL with a hamstring injury. He’s been incredibly underwhelming and now he’s hurt, so I see zero reason to even waste an IL spot on him. Drop him and find someone actually producing any kind of relevant numbers.
Evan Longoria: Longo has turned back the clock early on in 2021, batting .291 with 11 R, 4 HR, and 9 RBI so far on the young season. He was pulled from Thursday’s game with hammy tightness, so an IL trip could be in the near future. But maybe he’ll pull a Byron Buxton and get back in action before that happens.
Joc Pederson: Joc’s spring numbers (.378/.431/1.000 slash line with 8 HR and 19 RBI in 18 games) have not at all carried over into the real season. You read that SLG right — dude slugged a cool one thousand in spring, yet is only slugging .235 in real games. Joc will be re-evaluated soon to give a clearer picture of what’s needed, but for now, he’ll just rest up and hopefully be ready to come off the IL when eligible.
Joakim Soria: Soria is very close to a return. Would wager it’s later this week, but it’ll be sooner rather than later. Soria only has 0.2 IP under his belt this season, walking two, tossing a wild pitch, and striking out no one. Not sure how long his leash is as closer, but I gotta think he gets the job back at first.
Anthony Santander: An ankle injury is gonna keep Anthony Salamander on the shelf for 2-4 weeks. I seriously think “Anthony Salamander” every time I see his name, so that’s just his nickname now. Hope you like it. Anyway, you might wanna look at last year’s Home Run Daddy D.J. Stewart in the meantime.
Chris Owings: What a start this guy was having: .533/.588/1.133 slash line with 3 doubles, 3 triples (!), and 2 swipes in 7 games. I mean, yeah, his .615 BABIP was bound to come down, but still. He’s been sidelined with a thumb injury which has now evolved into a situation requiring surgery. Owings is on the 60-day IL as a result. Bummer.
Mike Moustakas: Moose hasn’t played since April 14 due to some kind of illness. It’s not COVID, but it’s nasty enough to have kept him out for over a week. Sounds like he’ll be back early in the week. Doubt we see him this weekend, though.
Donovan Solano: Solano was continuing where he left off last year, batting .300 and even chipping in a stolen base this year. A strained calf has him on the 10-day IL. Could be a longer stay than that.
Austin Nola: 2020’s fantasy catcher darling has been dealing with a broken finger but should be back in action very soon. He’s been cleared to train at the alternate site. It really did kind of sink his value after he got traded from Seattle to Slam Diego, though, so don’t set your expectations too high. Victor Caratini does a good job behind the plate; he’ll get his reps in, too.
Jean Segura: Segura strained a quad and is on the 10-day IL. Could be back May 1, but could be back later than that as well. We’ll just have to do the ol’ wait-and-see. Scott Kingery could see some reps. Not sure he’s worth a damn.
Jose Alvarado: Alvarado is on the IL for unspecified reasons. Screams COVID to me even though it’s not officially the COVID-IL right now. If he’s positive, that’s at least 10 days of quarantining he’ll have to do. He’s having a good year, sporting a 2-0 record with 1 SV and sexy ratios.
Jordan Romano/Julian Merryweather: Bad news first: Merryweather has been shut down for about a couple of weeks. Then there’s rehab after that. Good news next: Romano could return as soon as today. Rafael Dolis isn’t exactly blowing anyone’s socks off, so I’d figure Romano is back at it as Toronto’s closer. Merryweather is probably a safe drop at this point.
Gavin Lux/Zach McKinstry: Lux is expected to be activated from the IL on Monday. His 2021 line isn’t sexy: .220/.244/.317 with 0 HR, 5 RBI, 4 R, and 1 SB. On the flip side. Zach McKinstry landed on the IL with an oblique strain. I would have told you Lux’s return wouldn’t do hardly anything in the way of McKinstry’s playing time, but obviously, that’s out the window now. Chris Taylor also sat Friday due to a back issue, so Lux could straight up luck into playing time despite his piss-poor start to the year. That dude needs some more seasoning in the minors, methinks.
Teoscar Hernandez: TeeOffscar can now return to the team. Yay! But, he’ll need some time to get ramped up to game speed. Expect him later this week.
Adrian Morejon: This one’s for you dynasty folk: Morejon had Tommy John surgery on Tuesday. Looking at a mid-2022 return at the earliest. Bummerrrrrrr.
Tim Locastro: Locastro has been a nice little source of SB early on this season while also not killing your batting average. He should be back in a few days, though, since his left pinky was indeed dislocated rather than broken.
Framber Valdez: Not too much of an update here, but we know Valdez has been throwing off a mound lately. That’s positive, at least! You likely remember how most people figured season-ending surgery was inevitable, so every time we get news that’s not dire, we have to take it as a win.
Kyle Freeland: Freeland is progressing, at least. Threw off a mound yesterday and will throw a full bullpen sesh today.
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