Welcome back to the next edition of the fantasy baseball injury report where we take a look at players who suffered significant injuries in 2016 and have red flags all over them heading into the 2017 season. These are impact fantasy players who may see their draft value slip so they can provide great value if you are patient enough to grab them when the time is right in a draft. So without further ado, here is the next installment of the MLB pre-season walking wounded.
Trevor Story (SS-COL)
Injury – He suffered a ligament tear in his left thumb which required season-ending surgery.
2016 Season – The Rockies’ rookie shortstop hit .272 with 27 home runs, 72 RBI, 67 runs scored and had eight stolen bases in just 97 games.
Reason For Optimism
- Story reported to camp claiming to be 100% recovered from the injury and surgery.
- He displayed tremendous power as a rookie in under 100 games last year and now in his second season he has more experience to help further his development.
- He plays his home games at Coors Field…need we say more?
Reason For Concern
- Story burst onto the scene on Opening Day and had an incredible April in terms of his power and run production. He slowed down a bit after that as pitchers made adjustments.
- He was never much of a power hitter in the minor leagues so be wary of his mechanics if he is constantly swinging for the fences.
- Expectations are through the roof for Story after his dynamic rookie year so a regression would not be surprising now that opposing pitchers have seen him.
2017 OUTLOOK – Story made people forget about Troy Tulowitzki very quickly as he displayed an incredible offensive barrage last April. He will be off people’s radar more than he should be because he did miss the last two months of 2016 after suffering the season-ending thumb injury. Any player’s value increases when they get to play 81 games at Coors Field, so Story will be a valuable commodity in leagues of all formats. It will be interesting to see how he adjusts to the adjustments pitchers will make against him in his sophomore season. The power numbers will accumulate throughout the year, but whether he can maintain a solid batting average and keep his strikeout rate down is something to monitor. He struck out an alarming 130 times in just 372 at bats, so that is a clear indication that he has a lot of room to grow and improve in terms of plate discipline and learning the strike zone. He should be one of the top fantasy shortstops drafted because not many players at this position can produce 30 home runs and 100 RBI which is what he was on pace for last year before the injury.
Michael A. Stein, Esq. is the Chief Justice of Fantasy Judgment, the industry's premier dispute resolution service, and co-host of the Fantasy Alarm Podcast. You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook and Twitter (@FantasyJudgment),