Fantasy league injuries w/Stephania Bell
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Stephania Bell (3:00 PM)
Good afternoon Sports Nation and welcome to the Injury chat...never lacking for material in this room, that's for sure. I see that some of you are here and ready to go so let's get to your questions!
Elkins Park, Pa
Will A. Ramirez be back in the lineup tonight?
Stephania Bell (3:02 PM)
According to what Piniella was saying last night, he will be held out at least one more day. Now we know that managers can change their mind at the last minute, but that's what we're hearing...
When can we expect Mcann back and will he go back to normal form?
Stephania Bell (3:05 PM)
Joe: Thanks for being the first one here! This is really an unknown - it wsa originally reported as an infection, although now it's sounding as if that was not it. McCann has been working with a specialist and is trying out some new contacts while doing a 2 game rehab stint. If those don't work, there's at least a question as to whether he needs additional surgery (he previously had Lasik done)...and if that's the case, the timeframe, and more importantly his return to normal, come more into question. Definitely scary for McCann.
Hi Stephania. Last year I owned Figgins and Kendrick and it was pure hell dealing with their initially minor hamstring "tweaks" that ended up lasting and recurring for months it seemed. Could my SS this year, Stephen Drew, be on the same path potentially?
Stephania Bell (3:09 PM)
Roberto: Guess what? It's just as awful trying to be the medical staff and dealing with these injuries. It is so variable from one athlete to another and even from one "tweak" to another, that it is virtually impossible to predict with any degree of certainty how quickly a player is going to recover. And they're always trying to push it while in season, which can end up setting them back. Since Drew flared up his hamstring after trying to come back, even though it doesn't sound severe, the team did the prudent thing by resting him. If it progresses to a more serious tear by him trying to play through, then he could be out for months. The hope is that the 15 days will do it, but even then there's always the risk of recurrence - just the nature of the injury.
Will Alex Gordon be 100% when he comes back?
Stephania Bell (3:11 PM)
Isaac: That's the hope. The key is getting him back at the right point - not too early. His injury was brought on acutely, so once it heals, he should be good to go. The main thing is that he has the range of motion, strength and agility to handle all he needs to do at the position before trying to return.
Mike (Tampa, FL)
Can Baldelli get healthy and be a contributor?
Stephania Bell (3:12 PM)
Mike: After last year, it's really hard to guarantee Baldelli's health. I think it's always going to be a management issue, trying to limit his time away from the game as opposed to thinking he'll truly be healthy. DOesn't mean he can;t contribute when he's there, just means you don't know when he's going to be there.
I hear Kuroda got a cortisone shot and was told to rest. When do you see him coming back?
Stephania Bell (3:15 PM)
Matt: Kuroda has had a hard time progressing back from this oblique injury - whichcan certainly happen. The good thing is if a player gets an injection it means the medical staff has an excellent idea as to exactly where the problem is located (they can see something on MRI) and then they can target the treatment very specifically. unfortunately, you can only bring a guy back as fast as his symptoms allow - so although it's normally a 4-6 week process, his might be prolonged a bit more - it's a day to day reassessment. I would say not before late May.
Hey Stephania - what are your thoughts on Milton Bradley? First of all, why's he always hurt? Second, will this groin problem be a season-long problem?
Stephania Bell (3:17 PM)
Brett: I think Bradley is one of those guys who has more susceptibility to soft tissue injuries, meaning muscle/tendon/ligament, and unfortunately those are the kind of injuries that can linger. He also is an all-out player so if he comes back too early, he easily aggravates things - and he's not getting any younger. When I blogged on his groin injury, I expressed concern that it could linger...and here we are. Hopefully if they keep him out for a while here it won't be season-long, but with him, I never have confidence that it won't be something.
Any lingering concerns about Hanley's hand?!
Stephania Bell (3:19 PM)
Chuck: never like to see a strong hitter with a hand injury. Good news is negative X-rays, bad news is he had immediate swelling. Swelling will inhibit strength meaning less power, not to mention the discomfort he's having. He's definitely out tonight, but I wouldn't be surprised if it's at least a few mroe days.
Sean (Madison, WI)
I have a couple of pitchers on the DL currently (Smoltz, Webb, and Lackey). I'm most concerned with Webb, can I expect him to be ready in 6 weeks? I've heard up to 12 weeks? What's a realistic scenario as to when I can use him again. Also, this is a keeper league, is there any worry for Webb or Lackey going forward?
Stephania Bell (3:22 PM)
Sean: This is a tough one for me. There has been no inidcation of a specific problem with Webb, and his symptoms have all been reported as stiffness or tightness. MRIs clean, really nothing to hang your hat on. Makes me wonder if he doesn;t have a neck problem or some other issue affecting his shoulder. I really thought if it was just shoulder tightness he'd be back quickly, but it keeps hanging around. So the team opted to shut him down for a month, which sounds like they just don't want him to throw, just exercise the shoulder, and then work his way back. I still think he comes back this season and comes back strong, but it's impossible to say for sure. I still have concerns about Lackey too - I think he'll come back, just not sure how long he can last.
Just read that Hawpe has a Neck Contusion..is he DL bound?
Stephania Bell (3:24 PM)
J: Have not heard yet. They may wait a day or two to see how he feels. If there's no serious injury and the swelling subsides fairly quickly, they may not need to.
Matt (Baltimore, MD)
Good afternoon, Stephania. Brad Lidge is hurting. Any inside information? Is the DL in his future? Is it just his knee or do you suspect other problems?
Stephania Bell (3:27 PM)
Matt: I don't have the inside scoop on whether he'll hit the DL -and I actually think they have not made that decision. He has some inflammation in his knee and I think he really is day-to-day b/c they're hoping if the inflammation settles, then he can jump right back. He's had this knee operated on more than once and has had meniscal damage, so it's not a totally healthy joint, and flare-ups like this are bound to happen. The thing is recognizing that the swelling in the knee is likely affecting his overall performance, as we've seen. But resting for a few days may be all he needs. And I think it's just his knee.
Is Hamilton ok? I heard he has something going on with his ribs.
Stephania Bell (3:29 PM)
Hi Fredrick from across the pond: Yes, Hamilton apparently jammed his elbow into his side when making a play in the outfield which resulted in inflammation in his rib cage area. He has tried batting practice but couldn't complete the session andwas set to be re-examined by team docs today. It's possible he ends up on the DL.
Soria was shut down due to some shoulder stiffness..Any word on if he will be back soon?
Stephania Bell (3:32 PM)
Jason: Reportedly the MRI showed nothing specific, so the Royals planned on a few days of rest, medication, some exercises and the plan was 3-5 days off. He did do some catch in the bullpen Sunday and being a closer, it's not like he has to work up to huge pitch counts, so at this point the Royals are hoping that a few days will be all he needs.
Pete, Cincy, OH
Sticking with closers, waht is the concern with Brandon Morrow?
Stephania Bell (3:34 PM)
Pete: Morrow's another one with this non-specific shoulder stiffness. He did throw a bullpen Sunday and Wakamatsu says he could have used him in an emergency but wanted to wait. Sounds like the concern is not major at this point.
Bernard (Princeton, NJ)
Could you please explain Brian Bruney's injury in layman's terms?
Stephania Bell (3:37 PM)
Hi Bernard in my alma mater hometown: Bruney has a strained flexor mass. It's a reference to where the muscles that flex the wrist attach near the inner side of the elbow. The muscle bulk of the flexors is just below there and most strains happen where the muscles and tendons (the part that actually anchors the muscle to the bone and transfers the stress of the muscle contraction to the joint to move it) meet. This is not an uncommon injury in pitchers and you usually see it in spring training or early in the season (like now) as their arms readjust to throwing so hard and so often. The good news is that it's not a ligament (like the UCL which might mean TJ surgery) and within a month or so he could be back.
Steve (Minneapolis, MN)
Stephania-could you please let me know if Thome is going to play in the White Sox double header today...I could really use the double dip of low batting average. Thanks!
Stephania Bell (3:40 PM)
Steve: Don't know the lineup situation yet. He hurt his heel when he hit the second base bag Sunday and according to Guillen the doctors said "one or two days" so although it doesn't sound like a long time, don't know about today.
Peanut the Cat (under the bed)
I'm very worried about Chris Getz finger injury. Is this something he can play through, or will this eventually require surgery. I have no thumbs so I can't imagine holding a bat, let alone with a sore finger!
Stephania Bell (3:42 PM)
Peanut - impressive that you know about baseball: Getz' injury sounded pretty bad, especially according to Guillen, after it happened. But the word today is that the treatment he's been doing has really been helping. The swelling and bruising are coming down and he was going to try to swing a bat today. Sounds like they plan to try to get him back without surgery. If he absolutely had to have surgery, they would have gone striaght there. So it sounds like this was a crack that was minor (non-displaced) and that once they're comfortable with how he feels and what he can do, they'll let hjim come back.
When A-rod comes back, does he play every game or will the Yankees give him days off to ease him into things?
Stephania Bell (3:46 PM)
Birdman: great question -big mystery. I still am somewhat skeptical - not that he hasn't met every target, and reportedly has been fielding ground balls, one of the bigger challenges, but I don't really know how aggressively he's fielding them (which would make a difference as to how well I thought he was doing). Once he tries sliding, then we can start talking about the official timetable. I would not be at all surprised if the Yankees ease him back into his workload, just to be cautious, maybe even DH initially, then work him back to third. There is a lot invested there - and no matter how impressive he is coming off this surgery, this is still a really fast timetable. Again, until he slides, and then shows that he can do everything comfortably in a game situation, then I'll be more convinced that he's ready to return.
Frank (Columbus, OH)
According to Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune (http://blogs.chicagosports.chicagotribune.com/sports_hardball/), Jim Thome may not play until Friday. Also, Chris Getz is not in the lineup for Game 1 of the doubleheader.
Stephania Bell (3:46 PM)
Frank: Thanks for hte heads up for everyone. Getz will be out at least a week I suspect.
Frank (Columbus, OH)
Ervin Santana... what's the latest on him?
Stephania Bell (3:49 PM)
Frank: the latest is that he threw two innings in a simulated game Friday, did OK and will do the same Weds. If that goes well, then he heads for a minor league rehab assignment. The hope for the team is that they get him back mid-May. He has a partial UCL tear. It's conceivable that he comes back and does well and so far it's all encouraging. But it's also quite possible that at some point the ligament fails entirely and he needs TJ surgery. No way to know when/if that happens - just understand the risk if he's on your team.
TJ (Windy City)
Escobar...he had a setback, is e still on target for this month? Also, what do you ehar about Smoltz?
Stephania Bell (3:50 PM)
TJ: Nope - Escobar, b/c of the setback and some lingering discomfort is now targeted for June. But that was his original timetable so I really don't have a problem with that. Better to adjust to his needs than to push him and have it go south. Smoltz still looking good and expected to return early June.
Any news on Chris Carpenter's oblique? is it too early to tell if it's going better or worse than expected? Thanks Stephania!
Stephania Bell (3:51 PM)
Ricky: Still too early. This is on average a 6 week injury for a pitcher - and b/c of the concerns about his throwing arm, they will be absolutely sure not to have him throw too soon. So at this point he is just rehabbing the oblique, no throwing to assess yet.
What is the timetable on Xavier Nady?
Stephania Bell (3:54 PM)
Bryan: Well, at least it's not next season, at least not yet. The decision to try to rehab his elbow vs having surgery means that they're at least hopeful that they get him back. The plan was rest and rehab for 3 weeks, then he could try hitting. Throwing will be further off. Very hard to give an exact timetable b/c each step will be determined based on symptoms. But expect at least a month to six weeks before hitting, longer for him to play the field - and that's if he even can do that this year.
Delgado's hip -- be somewhat concerned or totally nothing.
Stephania Bell (3:56 PM)
Bill: Always concerned about Delgado's hip b/c it's an ongoing issue for him and bothers him every year. And every year he's another year older. That being said, he also knows how his hip responds by now and he doesn't seem to think he'll end up on the DL. He's supposed to see team docs today and go from there, but it sounds like it's not severe at this point.
Can you give me the 411 on Lackey? Hopefully his future looks brighter than Ervin and his partially torn ligament.
Stephania Bell (4:00 PM)
JJ: Lackey also has thrown a couple extended spring training innings and has tolerated it well. Scioscia seems pleased with his control and his velocity. He wilol likely head to the minors later this week and mid-May could also be a target return for him. I am more suspicious of his elbow as this is his second year ina row of it bothering him and he has pitched a LOT in the last 6 years, so the wear and tear is getting up there - but he could come back and be fine all season - that's what the Angels are hoping for anyway. Just understand that he's a higher risk than last year b/c of the extra work.
Glavine gave his shoulder two weeks to show improvement. It's been 3. What's the deal?
Stephania Bell (4:01 PM)
CC: He's still giving it a little time. Still with soreness but trying to work through it. Supposed to throw a bullpen this weekend - that may help with the decision.
With Santana are you saying we should definitely deal him at the first positive sign?
Stephania Bell (4:03 PM)
Or the first negative sign...look - with these there is no way to predict. Guys have shown they can pitch with partial or even complete UCL tears sometimes. Other guys get a tiny tear in the right spot and it disables them. Not a reflection on the guy - it's just the way the injury behaves relative to their pitching, etc. I'm just saying you have a known entity here in that the ligament is damaged - so without a doubt it creates more risk, but he still might be able to play through it.
Stephania Bell (4:05 PM)
BJ: He is doing well, responded nicely to the rest and is expected to throw a bullpen Weds. They could even use him at the end of the road trip, although Francona acknowledges there'es no need to rush (with them winning a ton of games ina row). Remember they want him for the long haul, so I wouldn't be surprised if they hold out until the next homestand, but certainly how he's throwing and how he's feeling are very encouraging.
When Mauer is back how many games in a row will he be playing?
Stephania Bell (4:06 PM)
Pat: Good question. Tiwns have already indicated that they plan to give him regular days off, saying they could even keep 3 catchers on their roster. Tells me they have some concerns about his symptoms returning if he does too much back to back work. So have to keep that in mind if he's on your roster. I'd only want him if I could change my lineup daily.
Bruce (New York)
Aramis Ramirez. Tonight? Good to go?
Stephania Bell (4:07 PM)
No, not likely, plan on someone else.
Stephania Bell (4:09 PM)
OK everyone - I have overstayed my welcome in the Sports Nation chat room. Time for me to go - but thanks, as always for the awesome questions that keep me busy trying to get answers for you. And for those who asked about Derrek Lee, he may sit out the entire Diamondbacks series b/c of neck spasms so plan on a replacement. Have a great week! See you next time.