The Yankees have had one of the most active revolving doors leading to and from the IL since last season. The injury bug is alive and well in the Bronx once again this season. While Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge is coming off of the IL once their season resumes, three other important cogs of the Yankees’ championship caliber roster have landed on the IL this week.
The Twins have also had their fair share of players hitting the IL this week as well.
Over the weekend the MLB network confirmed that seven of the 12485 samples collected (0.05%) as a result of MLB’s COVID-19 testing protocol this past week resulted in new positives. Three were players and four were staff members. Those are relatively good numbers but with one Met player and one Met staff member testing positive for the coronavirus, the Yankees and Mets were forced to cancel their weekend Subway Series.
Once again, this week’s injury report is littered with fantasy relevant players who will be forced to miss time this upcoming week. We’ll take a closer look at some of the injuries that we fantasy players will have to work around as we head into the upcoming week of the 2020 MLB season.
Stephen Strasburg , Washington Nationals
Strasburg’s 2020 season is over. He has officially been diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome and is scheduled to have season ending surgery on Wednesday.
James Paxton , New York Yankees
Paxton has been diagnosed with a grade 1 flexor strain in his left arm. As of Saturday the Yankees announced that he wouldn’t be throwing a ball for 14 days. The plan is for Paxton to rejoin the team in time to make a couple of starts before the beginning of the post season. Paxton, who is no stranger to the IL, put some of the blame for his injury on the short summer camp leading up to the season. Mike King, Nick Nelson and Jonathan Loaisiga are all being considered as options for the fifth spot in the Yankees’ starting rotation. Clarke Schmidt’s name has also been mentioned, but the fact that he’s not on the Yankees’ 40 man roster as well as service time considerations, make his addition to the Yankees’ starting rotation less likely.
Nate Pearson , Buffalo/Toronto Blue Jays
Pearson, the Blue Jays’ top pitching prospect, was placed on the IL due to elbow tightness. He underwent an MRI and as of Sunday the Blue Jays were still waiting for a second opinion regarding the root cause of his elbow discomfort. It’ll probably be a while before Pearson pitches again, as Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo told reporters that the team is “going to be careful with him.”
Jake Odorizzi , Minnesota Twins
It’s been a tough year for Odorizzi. He missed time to start the regular season due to a back injury and once healthy, he’s pitched to a miserable 8.10 ERA in his three starts so far this season. The Twins placed him on the 10 day IL due to bruised ribs after he was struck by a 103.2 mph line drive in his last start Friday night. It doesn’t appear that Odorizzi will be sidelined too long. The Twins are fortunate that Randy Dobnak (5-1, 1.78 ERA) has provided depth behind Kenta Maeda and José Berríos as their third starter. Rich Hill didn’t pitch well in his first start off the IL this week, but his return should help soften the blow from Odorizzi’s latest injury. The Twins rotation could also receive an added boost once Michael Pineda is reinstated from his suspension on August 31st.
Yonny Chirinos , Tampa Bay Rays
Chirinos, who opened the season as the Rays’ fifth starter will undergo Tommy John surgery and will miss this season and likely all of the 2021 season as well. Eight members of the Rays’ pitching staff have hit the IL this season. With Charlie Morton working his way back off of the IL (shoulder inflammation), the Rays handed the ball to Aaron Slegers on Saturday and Josh Fleming on Sunday and both pitched fairly well. The Rays are likely to be busy as MLB’s trade deadline approaches on August 31st.
Keone Kela , Pittsburgh Pirates
Kela was forced to exit his Friday night appearance due to forearm tightness. The Pirates are claiming that they were being overly cautious in removing him from the game. With Kela being their biggest trade chip, they don’t want to scare off any possible trade partners just yet. Richard Rodríguez picked up the save in the Pirates’ rare win on Sunday. It was just the Pirates’ pitching staff’s second save of the season.
Drew Pomeranz , San Diego Padres
The Padres placed Pomeranz on the 10 day IL due to a left shoulder strain. Pomeranz inherited the closer’s job when Kirby Yates had what is expected to be season ending surgery to remove bone chips from his right pitching elbow. Emilio Pagán picked up the save in the Padres win against the Astros on Sunday and is likely to be in line for the majority of the team’s save opportunities moving forward.
Zack Britton , New York Yankees
Britton, who notched eight saves while replacing Aroldis Chapman as the Yankees’ closer as Chapman recovered from COVID-19, was placed on the 10 day IL due to a grade 1 strain of his left hamstring and quad. Britton is an important part of the Yankees’ bullpen and when not filling in for Chapman, he’s a good sources for Holds as the Yankee set-up man.
Mitch Garver , Minnesota Twins
Garver was placed on the 10 day IL with what is considered a mild intercostal strain on his right side. Garver, who enjoyed a breakout 2019 season with 31 home runs in 93 games was batting just .154 so far this season. Ryan Jeffers, the Twins’ second round pick in the 2018 draft, was called up in a corresponding roster move. The 23 year old backstop has a .296/.383/.453 triple-slash in two minor league seasons.
Salvador Perez , Kansas City Royals
Perez was placed on the 10 day IL due to blurred vision in his left eye caused by a “little pocket of fluid”. Perez was having a fine season (.307 BA, four home runs and 12 RBI in 22 games) after missing all of last year recovering from Tommy John surgery. Perez had also previously tested positive for COVID-19 before the start of the season. Meibrys Veloria and Cam Gallagher have been filling in for Perez.
Chris Davis , Baltimore Orioles
Davis was placed on the 10 day IL due to knee patellar tendinitis. Since 2016 Davis has slumped miserably, posting a .196/.291/.379 triple-slash. In a subsequent move the Orioles called up top prospect Ryan Mountcastle . Mountcastle has a .295/328/.471 triple-slash in five minor league seasons. He has played shortstop, third base, first base and in the outfield in his minor league career. Mountcastle started in left field in his first three big league starts this weekend.
Gleyber Torres , New York Yankees
We alluded to the number of Yankees players on the IL and Torres being sidelined leaves a big void in their lineup, especially with Giancarlo Stanton and D.L. LeMahieu still nursing their injuries. Torres is expected to miss two to three weeks as he recovers from grade 1 strains in his hamstring and quadriceps. Look for Tyler Wade and Thairo Estrada to fill in for Torres at shortstop moving forward. Ironically, the Yankees had just signed shortstop/second baseman Jordy Mercer this week.
Elvis Andrus , Texas Rangers
The Rangers placed Andrus on the 10 day IL due to a lower back strain. Andrus has been slumping, batting just .184 with no homers and three RBIs this season. Isiah Kiner-Falefa and Yadiel Rivera have been filling in for Andrus at shortstop while he recovers.
Alex Bregman , Houston Astros
The Astros placed Bregman on the 10 day IL due to a strained right hamstring. With Bregman sidelined, Abraham Toro , who has a bit of pop in his bat, has been starting at third base for the Astros. Toro had an impressive combined .324/.411/.527 triple slash against Double-A and Triple-A pitching last season.
Kris Bryant , Chicago Cubs
The Cubs placed Bryant on the IL on Saturday due to a sprained finger on his left hand. He has also been dealing with an underlying wrist injury that has caused him to feel a pinch on the outside of the wrist when he swings a bat. Bryant has been trying to play through the injuries but has struggled for much of the season and is batting .177 with just two home runs and four RBI. The move is retroactive to last Wednesday. David Bote has been getting the majority of the starts at third base during Bryant’s absence with Nico Hoerner also getting a start at the hot corner this week as well.
Austin Slater , San Francisco Giants
Slater, one of the Giants hottest hitters of late, hit the 10 day IL due to a groin strain. He was already battling an elbow injury which caused him to have to DH in his last four starts. Slater has been enjoying a breakout season, batting .347 with four home runs and six stolen bases in 19 games.
Nick Senzel , Cincinnati Reds
The Reds placed Senzel on the IL this past Wednesday but did not release the nature of his injury. There has been speculation that it may be COVID-19 related. Senzel had missed time earlier this season after self-reporting COVID-19 type symptoms. Mike Moustakas was activated from the IL in a corresponding move.
Willie Calhoun , Texas Rangers
Calhoun was placed on the IL due to a low-grade hamstring strain. An MRI performed on Thursday confirmed the diagnosis. The injury is expected to keep him sidelined for up to three weeks, and according to the Dallas Morning News could be season ending. Calhoun is batting .172 with eight RBIs in 18 games this season. Rangers’ manager Chris Woodward indicated that Adolis García and Leody Tavares could see more playing time with Calhoun sidelined.
Byron Buxton , Minnesota Twins
Buxton was placed on the IL due to left shoulder inflammation. Jake Cave has been starting in centerfield for the Twins during Buxton’s absence. Lamont Wade Jr. was called up in a corresponding move. Wade hasn’t seen much action yet but has a minor league career .276/.389/.407 triple-slash and also has the ability to steal a base.
David Dahl , Colorado Rockies
You really shouldn’t be surprised, but Dahl is back on the IL. This time it’s due to lower back soreness. He’s batting just .189 on the season with zero home runs in 19 games. Garret Hampson has been starting in centerfield with Dahl on the sidelines.
Jay Bruce , Philadelphia Phillies
Bruce was placed on the 10-day IL with a strained left quadriceps. He’s batting just .231 but has a .596 slugging percentage and has slugged four home runs and driven in 11 runs this season. In a corresponding move rookie outfielder Adam Hasely was reinstated off of the IL and will likely split time in centerfield with Roman Quinn .
Dylan Moore , Seattle Mariners
Moore was placed on the 10 day IL due to a sprained wrist. He’s had a quiet but productive season as the Mariners primary right fielder. Moore is batting .282 with five home runs and six stolen bases in 21 games this season. Jake Fraley who has a minor league career .286/.362.480 triple-slash was recalled by the Mariners in a corresponding move.
Yordan Alvarez , Houston Astros
Alvarez will miss the remainder of the season as he recovers from knee surgery. The Astros have plenty of offensive punch who have been taking turns as the Astros DH of late including rookie Taylor Jones, Josh Reddick , Yuli Gurriel and Michael Brantley , who was just reinstated from the IL this past weekend.