The MLB non-waiver trade deadline is fast approaching which means many fantasy leagues’ trade deadlines are also looming. Injuries have decimated many GM’s rosters, and this week is no different. Even worse than a player going on the DL is a player being held in limbo where they are not disabled but out of the lineup for most of the week. That prevents GM’s from making a necessary roster move to put an active player in the lineup. It seems this edition of the walking wounded has plenty of those scenarios.
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Josh Hamilton (OF-LAA)
Josh Hamilton was awful in 2013. Then he got off to a great start during the first week of the 2014 season. Then he hurt his thumb and needed surgery to repair the ligament which cost him almost two months. Then he returned and only has hit three home runs in the 45 games since he has been back. Now he is sidelined again after injuring his knee and being taken out of Friday’s game. The extent of his injury is unknown, but it is a safe bet he will at least be out for a few days. With statistics that look more like Darryl Hamilton than Josh Hamilton, his absence shouldn’t be too big of a concern to deal with right now.
Nolan Arenado (3B-COL)
Nolan Arenado was taken out of Friday night’s game early which got fantasy GM’s a little nervous. These nerves were understandable given he recently returned from a lengthy absence due to a finger injury. However, Arenado was not taken out of the game for a physical reason. Rather, Walt Weiss pulled Arenado because he did not run out a ground ball in his last at bat which did not sit well with the second year manager. I guess Arenado did not idolize Derek Jeter when he was a kid.
Starling Marte (OF-PIT)
Starling Marte was placed on the 7-day disabled list with a concussion. He sustained the injury last weekend but returned to the Pirates lineup on Monday. Further concussion tests revealed that he did in fact need to be disabled for the week and he will have to pass all of the other tests before he can resume baseball activities. Marte has been a big disappointment for fantasy GM’s this year, so him being out of your lineup probably doesn’t change too much for you.
Mark Teixeira (1B-NYY)
Mark Teixeira has been a fixture on the injury report all season. After missing time due to various ailments through the year, he is now sidelined with a lat injury he sustained last weekend. The Yankees will likely make a decision very shortly about whether to disable him or not. Even if they don’t put him on the DL, expect Teixeira to be in and out of the lineup for the rest of the season. He has provided good power numbers when he has played (17 home runs and 48 RBI in 76 games), but he cannot be counted on as your starting first baseman down the stretch.
Manny Machado (3B-BAL)
Manny Machado has missed the past four games with a back injury, but there is no telling whether he will be able to return to the lineup this weekend or be placed on the DL. Machado is coming back from major knee surgery, so he is no stranger to injuries. After a solid 2013 season, he has been pedestrian at best this year with a .267 batting average along with 10 home runs and only 23 RBI. He has not been able to replicate the success he had last year, and now this back injury could prolong his ability to replicate that past success.
Asdrubal Cabrera (SS-CLE)
Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera has been out all week with a back injury and was targeting this weekend to return. He has never come close to replicating his epic 2011 season, so fantasy GM’s shouldn’t be shedding too many tears with him being out. That being said, Cabrera does hit in a good Cleveland lineup and still produces respectable offensive numbers. Unless he suffers a drastic setback, expect him to return this weekend and plug him into your middle infield slot.
Jake Smolinski (3B-TEX)
Jake Smolinski It seems as though any player who wears a Texas Rangers uniform this season will end up on the disabled list. You can add Jake Smolinski to that list now as the rookie was shut down for a couple weeks with a bone bruise after fouling a ball off of his left foot. He has hit well thus far with a .388 batting average in 36 at bats, but that is far too small a sample size to be able to draw any conclusions. He is not worth stashing on your DL at this point unless you have unlimited slots or you are in a really deep league.
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),