2018 MLB Injury Report: August 7
Michael A. Stein breaks down the injury situations across Major League Baseball, including player profiles, reasons for optimism, and reasons for pessimism.
The injuries keep piling up which should not come as a surprise to anyone who plays fantasy baseball. While no one can control that, GMs can control what kind of depth they accumulate on their rosters to withstand the injuries. We are also reaching the point in the season where teams are thinking longer term about their players as far as being conservative with how quickly they bring them back from injury. These decisions will be critical in determining how GMs manager their rosters on a daily and weekly basis. So, without further ado, here is the next edition of the fantasy baseball emergency room.
Mike Trout (OF-LAA)
The best player in baseball has been out since late last week with a wrist injury and now the Angels have indicated that they hope he will be back by this weekend when they face Oakland. This indicates that there is no intention of putting Trout on the disabled list which is good news. However, missing a week and a half’s worth of production from Trout is severely detrimental to fantasy GMs. He received a cortisone shot in his wrist on Monday so hopefully he is on track to return by Friday.
Chris Sale (SP-BOS)
Initially it was reported that Sale would return from the disabled list on Wednesday this week. However, those plans have changed as Boston is going to hold off on bringing him back until after their mid-week series against Toronto. The Red Sox recent sweep of the Yankees and expansion of their lead in the AL East likely led them to the decision to give Sale some extra time off. He could be back at some point this weekend looking to build on his 11-4 record with a 2.04 ERA, 0.87 WHIP and 207 strikeouts.
George Springer (OF-HOU)
The Astros have been hit with a barrage of injuries lately and George Springer is the latest victim. He was placed on the disabled list with a left thumb injury but is expected to only miss the minimum 10 days. It is reassuring for fantasy GMs that this is only a minor injury, but losing his production could be costly at this critical juncture of the season. Springer is currently batting .250 with 19 home runs, 58 RBI, 74 runs scored and six stolen bases. Keep him stashed and expect him back once he is eligible to return.
Joey Votto (1B-CIN)
Votto has had a sluggish season thus far only batting .289 with nine home runs, 53 RBI, 58 runs scored and one stolen base. These statistics fall well short of what was expected of him. He was hit by a pitch on his knee over the weekend and missed Sunday’s game as a result. He did play on Monday against the Mets but his knee seemed to be bothering him when he was running the bases. Right now Votto should be considered day-to-day and could miss some time to allow his knee to heal.
Lance McCullers (SP-HOU)
Fantasy GMs received some bad news with Lance McCullers as he has been placed on the disabled list with a strained right forearm. It is no secret that forearm issues could be a precursor to needing Tommy John surgery, so that certainly has to be on people’s minds. McCullers does have an injury history so Houston will likely be very cautious with how they handle this. McCullers won’t be back until September at the earliest, but we will have to wait and see what his prognosis is before making further determinations. He is 10-6 with a 3.93 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 138 strikeouts in 126 innings but it is questionable whether he will be able to provide any more production the rest of the way. Keep him stashed for now if you have available DL slots, but be prepared to set him free if it looks like this is going to require an even longer absence.
Tommy Pham (OF-TB)
Newly-acquired Tommy Pham has been placed on the disabled list with a fractured right foot. Tampa Bay had some additional testing done which revealed the fracture after the initial x-rays came back negative. This is frustrating for fantasy GMs who were banking on a renaissance from Pham in Tampa Bay. He will likely be out for up to a month so stash him on your bench or DL if you have an available slot. He is currently batting .244 with 14 home runs, 41 RBI, 69 runs scored and ten stolen bases so there is enough upside to hold onto him while he is out.
Wil Myers (1B/OF-SD)
It feels like Myers has gone on the disabled list every other week this season. After spending two stints on the DL already, he finds himself back on the shelf again but this time with a bruised foot. He suffered the injury after fouling a ball off of his left foot last week and then was placed on the DL retroactive to August 3. He should be able to return once eligible and hopefully stay healthy for the remainder of the season. It has been a disappointing 2018 season for Myers who has been limited to a .273 batting average with nine home runs, 30 RBI, 21 runs scored and five stolen bases in only 44 games.
Tyler Skaggs (SP-LAA)
The Angels starting rotation has been decimated by injuries all season and now Skaggs can be added to the long list. He was placed on the disabled list with a strained left adductor which is likely the reason why he was lit up in his last start last week. Despite his horrendous outing recently, he still has an 8-7 record with a 3.34 ERA, 1.25 WHIP and 118 strikeouts in 113.1 innings over 20 starts. Skaggs is expected to be back once eligible so you can hold onto him assuming you have enough depth to replace him for the week.
Matt Kemp (OF-LAD)
It has been a renaissance season for Kemp who is currently batting .289 with 17 home runs, 64 RBI and 50 runs scored. The 33-year old has found the fountain of youth in his return to Los Angeles but missed Sunday’s game due to a contusion on his ankle. The Dodgers were off on Monday so Kemp was allotted some extra time off to heal and could be back as soon as Tuesday.
Yasiel Puig (OF-LAD)
While Kemp is not expected to miss much time with his injury, the same cannot be said for Yasiel Puig . He recently spent time on the disabled list due to a strained right oblique and is experiencing soreness in the same spot again after only being back for a week. The Dodgers will be cautious with their right fielder and depending on how he is feeling after their off day they will make a decision on how to proceed with him. Puig is currently batting .268 with 14 home runs, 43 RBI, 43 runs scored and seven stolen bases which only makes him a viable fantasy option in deeper leagues. He is a candidate to be dropped if he does land back on the DL.
Tyler O'Neill (OF-STL)
After the Cardinals traded away Tommy Pham , it looked like Tyler O’Neill was going to get a chance to see regular at bats and become a viable fantasy option. Unfortunately, he immediately suffered a groin injury and has been placed on the disabled list. He is eligible to return on August 14 and is expected to be activated on that date. O’Neill is hitting .309 with three home runs, nine RBI, ten runs scored and one stolen base in just 55 at bats so he could be a valuable addition down the stretch. Jose Martinez will likely start seeing regular playing time again while O’Neill and Dexter Fowler are out, but O’Neill is the one to target on the waiver wire.
Ian Kinsler (2B-BOS)
The Red Sox acquired Kinsler at the trading deadline to shore up their second base position due to the uncertainty of Dustin Pedroia ’s status. Sure enough, Kinsler landed on the disabled list just a few days later with a strained left hamstring. He got off to a miserable start to the season with the Angels but has really picked things up over the past few weeks. His fantasy value soared with the trade to Boston but now GMs will have to wait a couple weeks before really reaping those benefits. Stash him if you have the roster space for it because he should be back once eligible to return.