Wow, this one came out of nowhere! Drew Rasmussen has been placed on the 60-day IL with a flexor strain, an elbow injury that is typical bad news. This is a major injury for a pitcher and will be out for at least two months now, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it ends up being longer. This is a huge blow, both to the first place Tampa Bay Rays (especially when you consider the fact they also lost Jeffrey Springs and haven’t had Tyler Glasnow available yet either) and to fantasy baseball managers. He has pitched extremely well this season and will be a tough piece to replace. Make sure to give the fantasy baseball ros rankings a look and the fantasy baseball waiver wire report for possible options for your fantasy team. If your league doesn’t have IL spots, you can safely drop him at this point.
Rasmussen just tossed seven shutout innings against the New York Yankees last night while giving up just two hits and striking out seven. He didn’t give up a run in his previous start either, tossing 5.2 shutout innings against those same Yankees. He lowered his season ERA to 2.62 and has 47 strikeouts across 44.2 innings of work. He was the type of pitcher that fantasy baseball managers could roll out every start with a “set it and forget it” mindset. As for the Rays, who replaces him in the rotation?
Taj Bradley is the obvious replacement here for the Rays and is worth an immediate add if he is available on your waiver wire. Our very own Matt Selz wrote about Bradley in the Week 3 Prospect Report and Colby Conway wrote about him in the Streaks & Trends article from a few weeks ago. It was shocking when he was sent back down to AAA after posting a 3.52 ERA across his first three starts while striking out 23 batters across 15.1 innings of work. He has really struggled at AAA since being sent down though, so it will be interesting to see if the Rays go that route. Luis Patino, Elvin Rodriguez, or Cooper Criswell could also be options, but Bradley is the only one worth considering for fantasy baseball purposes. Glasnow can’t get back soon enough for the Rays at this point with all the injuries to their pitching staff. However, the Rays still comfortably sit atop the AL East with a 30-9 record (five games ahead of the second place Baltimore Orioles). They are a great team and it helps their starters have increased chances of picking up a win for fantasy baseball purposes, so keep a close eye on what they decide to do. In the meantime, add Bradley right now if you can.
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