Welcome to the Passover edition of the Fantasy Baseball Injury Report. Although the main two nights of the holiday are over, I thought we would incorporate some of Passover’s finest traditions into this edition of the walking wounded. After all, those of us that celebrate Passover have to suffer by eating cardboard known as matzoh. That is the perfect tie-in for fantasy baseball GM’s who have to settle for backups and scrubs when players get injured. So here is the Fantasy Baseball Injury Report for April 17, 2014.
Lamb’s blood on the door.
It seems as though every team in Major League Baseball has had some chaotic turmoil with their closers through the first couple weeks of the season. But not the Atlanta Braves. The great Craig Kimbrel seemed to have lamb’s blood on his door meaning the curse of the closer was going to pass over and move on to the next victim. But earlier this week, Kimbrel experienced shoulder soreness and was not available for Atlanta. After throwing a side session in the middle of the week, he declared himself good to go. However, the specter of a shoulder problem will remain for the foreseeable future so you may want to go paint Kimbrel’s door with some more blood of lamb.
Enslaved by prospects.
As fantasy baseball GM’s, we are always trying to build our rosters for both the present and future. Even in redraft leagues, it is not uncommon to draft or pick up minor leaguers with the expectation they will be promoted later in the year. We feel compelled to rely on the unknown and buy into hype. Mariners’ pitching prospect Tijuan Walker is one of these pitchers who has a lot of hype attached to him. But just when you were getting ready to reap the benefits of Walker’s debut, he is shut down with an impingement in his shoulder and is now on the disabled list. Hopefully it will only be a few more weeks before he is ready to join Seattle’s rotation, but then again, this could be another instance of getting caught in the trap of expecting too much too soon.
Please pass the shank bone.
The shank bone is a key ingredient on the Seder plate. Perhaps Mike Napoli will need to borrow a shank bone to insert into his hand after severely dislocating his finger diving into second base earlier this week. It is good news that he didn’t fracture or break his finger, but he will still likely miss a few games until his finger has healed.
Matzoh with peanut butter and Kelly.
The Cardinals are a fine-tuned machine and manage to develop players at all positions, including pitchers. Joe Kelly is one of the latest examples as he has emerged as a solid starting pitcher in the back-end of St. Louis’s rotation. Through his first three starts, he is 1-1 with a 0.58 ERA. Unfortunately he sustained a hamstring injury during his last start and has been placed on the disabled list. He will probably miss several weeks, if not more, so look for other alternatives on the Cardinals such as Tyler Lyons and Carlos Martinez.
Why is this night different than any other night?
Once upon a time, Brian Roberts was a great second baseman for the Orioles and a stellar fantasy baseball option at a scarce position. But for the last several years, Roberts has sustained one injury after another and cannot stay on the field. After Robinson Cano departed for Seattle, the Yankees signed Roberts hoping he would play second base every day. Well it did not take long for those hopes to dissipate as Roberts has missed several games with back spasms. He says he should be fine shortly, but that is not necessarily good news for fantasy GM’s. If you prefer baseball players who can remain healthy and produce at least marginal statistics, then Roberts and his .129 batting average with one RBI probably aren’t going to cut it for you.
Michael A. Stein, Esq. is the Chief Justice of Fantasy Judgment, the industry's premier dispute resolution service. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook and Twitter (@FantasyJudgment),