This edition of the injury report actually has several positive developments in terms of players getting set to return from the disabled list.  The key is being able to tread water in your leagues while impact players are on the shelf.  If you can survive long enough without them, then it is like making a blockbuster trade when you can plug these players back in your lineup.  So, without further ado, let’s delve into the next edition of the fantasy baseball emergency room.


Day to Day

Eric Thames (OF-MIL) – Thames has arguably been the biggest surprise in baseball thus far mashing 13 home runs and sporting a .306 batting average through 39 games.  Granted he has cooled off significantly over the past week, but he is still one of the best power hitters in the game right now.  He has been dealing with nagging leg injuries of late and had to be removed from Sunday’s game against the Cubs with cramps.  It does not appear to be a serious injury or one that will require a trip to the disabled list, but this is something to keep an eye on because it is the type of injury that can be recurring and cause several stop and starts over the course of a few days. 


Jose Reyes (SS-NYM) – Reyes was scratched from the Mets lineup on Sunday with tightness in his rib cage but appears that he will be able to play on Tuesday.  The injury did not appear to be very serious but with the rash of injuries the Mets have dealt with it made sense to keep him on the bench and allow him time to heal with an off day on Monday.  Reyes has been atrocious swinging the bat thus far but has raised his average over the Mendoza Line with a recent hot streak.  His eligibility at shortstop now makes him a viable middle infield option but he will have to keep raising that average and start stealing some bases to make it worth a GM’s while to keep him rostered.


Kolten Wong (2B-STL) – Wong injured his elbow on Saturday on a swing and was held out of the lineup on Sunday as well.  It’s his non-throwing elbow so the Cardinals do not seem overly concerned at this point as they have been rotating players throughout the lineup and on the field to compensate for all of the injuries they have.  Wong is considered day-to-day and is only a marginal fantasy option as a middle infield option in deep leagues. 


Nate Karns (SP-KC) – Karns has a lengthy injury history so it is not a surprise the Royals starter is on the shelf again dealing with fluid and tightness in his right elbow.  Kansas City hasn’t made a decision yet on whether he will need a stint on the disabled list, but chances are that is exactly what they will do.  Karns overall numbers have been respectable thus far, especially his strikeout ratio which is more than one per inning (51 punchouts in 45.1 innings).  He is not worth holding onto if you need to free up a roster spot.


On the DL


Dallas Keuchel (SP-HOU) – You can add Keuchel to the list of big-name starting pitchers on the shelf as he is dealing with a pinched nerve in his neck.  Keuchel is the early leading candidate for the American League Cy Young Award compiling a 7-0 record with 1.84 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 54 strikeouts in 63.2 innings.  Fortunately he is only expected to miss one start as the injury does not appear to be serious.  He should be back for Week 9.


Taijuan Walker (SP-ARZ) – The Diamondbacks placed Walker on the disabled list with a blister on his finger.  He is coming off a dominant start against the Padres last Friday but must have sustained the injury during those six shutout innings.  Walker has been very solid for Arizona after being acquired from the Mariners in the offseason.  He has compiled a 4-3 record with a 3.46 ERA, 1.29 WHIP and 46 strikeouts in 52 innings.  The problem is that blisters tends to be a recurring problem so it is unclear how long Walker could be out.


Brian McCann (C-HOU) – McCann has been put on the seven-day concussion disabled list and will be eligible to return on May 27.  He has had a nice bounce-back season thus far with the Astros batting a solid .269 with six home runs and 25 RBI in 30 games.  With McCann out of the lineup, Evan Gattis should see most of the playing time behind the plate which makes him a solid catching option for Week 8.


Justin Turner (3B-LAD) – The red-headed third baseman on the Dodgers is on the disabled list dealing with a Grade 1 strain of his hamstring.  The good news is that this is the least serious type of hamstring injury so he likely will not require a lengthy stint on the disabled list.  Turner’s power hasn’t shown up yet as he only has one home run, but he is batting .379 through his first 39 games.  His injury likely means Chris Taylor will remain in a platoon at second base with Chase Utley while Logan Forsythe slides over to third base when he returns from injury.


Aaron Sanchez (SP-TOR) – We can easily point the finger at what Sanchez’s problem has been all year (see what I did there?).  Sanchez has been placed on the disabled list for the third time already after another blister popped on his middle finger last Friday against the Orioles.  He has been a useful fantasy asset when healthy, but that has not happened too frequently in 2017.  Sanchez.  In just five starts, Sanchez has yet to win a game but has a respectable 3.33 ERA and 1.27 WHIP.  That being said, his blister problem has come to a point where Sanchez does not have to be stashed if you are running out of available roster slots.


On the Mend

Josh Donaldson (3B-TOR) – Finally, Donaldson has begun his rehab assignment as he works his way back from a calf injury.  Barring any setbacks, he could return to the Blue Jays lineup by the end of this week which is a huge boost to fantasy rosters that have been sorely missing him since early April.


Yoenis Cespedes (OF-NYM) – It remains to be seen whether the Mets will send Cespedes on a rehab assignment, but there is a possibility he could be back in the middle of this week if they do not.  He has been running and testing out his hamstring, so the Mets may simply activate him without getting him at bats in a minor league game.  He also will be a tremendous addition back into fantasy lineups and should help elevate the value of Michael Conforto and Jay Bruce once the Mets lineup is deepened with the return of Cespedes.


Robinson Cano (2B-SEA) – The Mariners are set to activate Cano from the disabled list on Tuesday.  This is extremely good news for GMs who lost the elite second baseman to a quadriceps injury for the past ten days.  Cano is unquestionably one of the top offensive second basemen in the league and his offensive output will be a welcome addition back into lineups that have been lacking his statistical output.


Corey Kluber (SP-CLE) – The Indians ace pitcher will make a rehab assignment on Thursday and is aiming towards returning at some point during Week 9.  Kluber has been out with a back injury but seems to be heading towards 100% after throwing a successful bullpen session a few days ago and is slated to throw 75 pitches in his rehab start.  Mike Clevinger has been filling in admirably for Kluber with a 2-1 record to go along with a 1.56 ERA and 0.98 WHIP.  He will likely be the odd man out but there should be plenty of other opportunities for him with all of the nagging injuries that Danny Salazar and Carlos Carrasco have every year.


James Paxton (SP-SEA) – There is positive news about another Mariners player as James Paxton works his way back from a forearm injury.  He threw a bullpen session over the weekend without issue and is scheduled to make a minor league start later this week.  Seattle is targeting him to return on May 31 against Colorado.  He has already been out for a few weeks with the injured forearm after beginning the season as one of the most dominant starting pitchers in the league with a 3-0 record and a microscopic 1.43 ERA and 0.98 WHIP.  Paxton will likely be the first of several other Seattle starters who will be returning from injury including Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma and Drew Smyly.


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 or on Facebook and Twitter (@FantasyJudgment).