Welcome back to the next edition of the fantasy baseball injury report where we take a look at players who have suffered injuries in spring training 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.
J.D. Martinez (OF-DET)
Injury – He has been diagnosed with a sprained Lisfranc ligament in his right foot and will be shut down for up to a month.
2016 Season – Martinez batted .307 with 22 home runs, 68 RBI, 69 runs scored and one stolen base in 460 at bats over the course of 120 games. He missed almost two months of action with a fracture in his right elbow.
Reason For Optimism
- The good news is that Martinez does not need surgery so he could be back at some point in May barring any setbacks.
- He has blossomed since joining the Tigers in 2014 and will continue to thrive hitting around Miguel Cabrera in Detroit’s lineup.
- Martinez is still only 29-years old and is in the prime of his career meaning he can be expected to contribute solid statistics in four of the five main Roto categories.
Reason For Concern
- A Lisfranc injury is very painful so it is impossible to estimate when Martinez can resume baseball activities without any pain.
- The fact he doesn’t need surgery is positive, but the recovery will be purely subjective and Martinez could mistakenly push himself too quickly to get back.
- The earliest he is projected to return is sometime in May, but it could easily be longer than that if he does not recover quick enough or has any type of setback.
2017 OUTLOOK – Martinez emerged in 2014 out of nowhere to become a very valuable fantasy outfielder combining a lot of power with a superior batting average. He was discarded by the Astros and blossomed into a star upon joining the Tigers averaging a .299 batting average with 27 home runs and 82 RBI between 2014-2016. Health appears to be a big red flag for Martinez at this stage of his career so there are doubts surrounding his durability. This Lisfranc injury is serious and he will miss a good chunk of time to begin the season so his draft value will be greatly affected if you still have drafts to participate in this week. GMs will feel more comfortable drafting and stashing Ian Desmond because the time table for his return is much more expedited. Martinez now brings a lot of baggage to the table and poses an interesting dilemma for fantasy GMs who will have to decide how long to let him slide in drafts. He was a legitimate OF2 in any format before the injury but now your rankings need to be adjusted.
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).