Many All-Star players came off the DL yesterday. We need to examine their potential moving forward. Though it is good for their respective Fantasy managers to have the added early picks back on their rosters they must be willing to continue to take the risk of rostering them. Let’s look at each of their injuries and their significance in the batting order along with their fantasy value in each category.
Nelson Cruz is coming off a quadriceps strain. I had concerns early in February about his new running style and predicted he would not be stealing bases like he had in the past. Here is the post scroll down to the 2/8/2011 post. To date he has 1 SB and is under performing for a 2nd round pick. The average in dismal but the power is still prevalent and he is hitting in that run producing line up so the RBI will be there. If I owned him I would hope he comes back hot and move him ASAP before you get burned with his 2nd and 3rd trip to the DL.
Josh Hamilton is coming back from the freaky fracture of his right arm. I see Hamilton settling right back into MVP mode while hitting in the 3 hole. I would hope The Rangers would continue to use him in the DH for as long as possible until he is needed in the field. The biggest challenge for Hamilton will be avoiding the odd and unnatural baseball injuries that have followed him throughout his career. Roster him, start him; gloat when he puts up the monster numbers.
Chase Utley suffered through patellar tendinitis for 3 months. Getting older and having an injury that will prevent him from running like he has in the past has turned me against owning him. I know all of you who had him on your DL all season do not want to hear that but he is a Brian Roberts in the making; that he is on the downhill slide of a good career. In my preseason rankings I stated that if you can keep him healthy he performs. His debut was a 0-5 (Box Score Blues) and looked out of rhythm. He may only play 4 to 5 games a week too. Until his timing is completely back he will struggle. So forget about the SB and the team is not hitting well together, they had a stretch were they only produced 36 runs in a 16 game stretch during May.
Jim Thome had old man syndrome…back pain. So of course he comes back with 2 HR 2 BB and 4 RBI for the slumping Twins. I would not own him unless you are in the deepest of leagues or have close to a double digit bench spots. Still a good guy to cheer for and hope he gets to 600 HR soon. I suggest the Twins sit him for a week at time then bring back and put him in the lineup for monster games. Owning Thome is high risk high reward with lots of disappointment. Anyone who has ever gambled knows the big wins are never as sweet as the devastating losses hurt.
Rafael Furcal is suffering from injury # 26 in his career, this time a broken thumb. I didn’t like him last year, before the injury, and still don’t like him. Remember when he was ready to retire until his agent talked him out of it. If you like 34 year old injury prone SS the Furcal is your man. He may not reach .200 this year with less than 20 RBI and 30 Runs.