Fantasy Injuries with Stephania Bell
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, fantasy injury expert Stephania Bell will stop by to chat all things injury related. If you have a question on any athletes' sprains, breaks, tears, any injury related question, ask Stephania!
Bell is a physical therapist who is a board-certified orthopedic clinical specialist as well as being a certified strength and conditioning specialist. She is a clinician, author and teacher with extensive experience in sports medicine. An avid fantasy player, Bell spent time at Rotowire.com and on XM Radio's fantasy sports show before joining ESPN.
Bell earned her undergraduate degree from Princeton and her Master's in physical therapy from the University of Miami. A native of San Francisco, Bell roots shamelessly for the 49ers and Giants.
Send your questions now and join Bell Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET!
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stephania bell (2:10 PM)
Hi gang:Finally got into the room! Remote technical challenges...but I'm here. It has been a BUSY injury week...but focused on just a few. What questions do you have on guys not named Paul or Tiger?
Marco E. (Los Angeles)
Is Ryan Zimmerman toast for this year? It sounds like he MIGHT be back for the (end of the) Fantasy Playoffs...will he be useful at all if he returns?
stephania bell (2:14 PM)
Hi Marco: I don't know if I want to use the word "toast." But a Grade 2 hamstring strain is nothing to sneeze at. He's just working on an underwater treadmill it sounds like which tells you how slow the progression is going to be. And hamstrings are so iffy, even when guys first come back. There's certainly enough time for him to potentially return but it's a question of value for fantasy. I'm not sure I'd be looking for much before mid-late September...and that's likely when he'll be testing it.
"Juan" In A Million (Colorado)
Hi Stephania, you totally kick @ss! Hey will Montee's recent surgery impact him early on the season? With him already missing all of preseason, my concern is how well will he bounce back? will his burst and physical ability take a hit for a few weeks?
stephania bell (2:16 PM)
Juan: Ahem, Thank you. I shouldn't think it would. He has a good month to recover from the surgery and get his fitness/conditioning back. It usually knocks guys backward a bit more than they expect, simply because it's surgery. If it were 2 weeks before, I'd be more concerned about what you mentioned but he has the luxury of not rushing.
Any long term concerns with Paul Goldschmidt -- would you caution against drafting him in the top 5 next year?
stephania bell (2:17 PM)
Daniel: No long-term concerns. Bone should heal within a reasonable time frame. Even if takes a while to regain full grip strength, etc has plenty of time before next season.
Matt (Vancouver, Canada)
Hello from Canada Eh! Stephania - always enjoy the injury updates on the podcast. Can you let me know what your initial thoughts are on McCutchen? also... why haven't they placed him on DL already?
stephania bell (2:20 PM)
Hi Matt: Greetings to the north. ANd thanks. You're giving me an opportunity to tell you I just posted an entry on McCutchen at my blog site with much more detail than I can offer here. They haven't placed him on the DL because they're hopeful he won't need two weeks. Might be a bit optimistic but this is an unusual injury and it sounds like there's a chance the Pirates wishes come true.
Dj (New York)
Danny Amendola, been hearing good things but how healthy is healthy for him?
stephania bell (2:22 PM)
DJ: Great way of putting it. How healthy is AMendola healthy? I don't think you can ever separate a guy from his injury history. He may be doing great so far this year - which is very encouraging - but if you look at his pattern - he has missed so many games it would be foolish to expect 16 games. Need to look at getting best value for him in a draft. To me he's a 3rd or 4th WR. Not because of talent, but because of risk.
Votto update? Is he still a keeper?
stephania bell (2:27 PM)
Mike: This is a tough one. Feel like he has so much talent left. The question is can he get back to the ceiling of his talent with that quad/knee. Sounds like the team is still hopeful of getting him back sometime this month but who knwos what they get when he returns? If I were deciding today, I'd probably let go but if I had the option of waiting, I'd want to see if he was able to return to at least 'near' form this season.
Is Knowshon Moreno hurt still, or did he just not want to go through training camp?
stephania bell (2:29 PM)
Matt: Legitimately challenged by that knee. I was actually surprised to hear he was out there today based on how things sounded just days ago. Put it this way. There's enough worry about the global health of his knee to make me concerned about how he'll hold up to a full season.
reggie m. (bankers life fieldhouse, in)
i'm still having nightmares of paul george snapping his leg.....do you think that was an unusual thing to happen? just a clean break on landing? could there have been an existing issue that was undiagnosed?
stephania bell (2:32 PM)
Reggie: Sometimes there are pre-existing stress injuries that can make the bone susceptible to fracture. In George's case we obviously don't have information on the exact condition of his leg prior to the injury but the force he was subjected to was enough to break his leg anyway.
Jay (Rye Brook)
Hi Stephania! EE is not helping me out...still in first but my lead dwindles!! Will he help me by the end of next week or am I still 2 weeks or more away from his mighty bat!
stephania bell (2:38 PM)
Jay: The end of next week appears to be the soonest target IF there are no more setbacks. He is hitting again, may test running in a few days but now the team is not going to try to get around a rehab assignment. Need to put him through all the situational things to see how the leg responds. And then hope for the best.
I'm looking at adding Wacha as a keeper for baseball next season. Should I be worried long term because of his shoulder problems?
stephania bell (2:41 PM)
Tim: Don't think we've seen enough of these injuries to know the answer. Brandon McCarthy has been very candid about his situation saying he expects it to be a recurring thing and then deals with it when it comes up. Besides him, there really aren't any documented cases in the pros. Hard to know what would make it recur if we're not really sure why it happens in the first place. Something in their particular mechanics places undue stress on the scapula (shoulderblade) and the reaction develops but no one knows exactly what that element of the mechanics is. I think given that it's happened once there's some increased risk but can't say that it's a great risk.
Hey there all-knowing Stephania! I'm in a H2H baseball league, and I've basically already made the playoffs. Any chance Yadier (Molina, in case there's another backstop named Yadier out there) helps the squad in September?
stephania bell (2:46 PM)
Will: Not all-knowing, as you can see. Don't know if Molina will be back but I think it's a possibility if everything lines up right. He has to have enough strength back to perform his duties both at and behind the plate and it may also depend on the Cardinals situation in September. If they're not in the hunt, his likelihood of return goes down.
Tim (Boston) [via mobile]
I've heard because kids play only one sport it's a major factor in all these pitching injuries, why is that?
stephania bell (2:47 PM)
Tim: True. And I've been one of the voices chiming in on that. Much longer answer than can give here but basically it's related to overuse. Not just pitching either. Can be any movement in any sport. You do too much of one thing over and over without enough recovery time and there will be injury. Period.
De'Mon Ivey (Rice University)
I'm looking to add Spencer Dinwiddie on my upcoming NBA fantasy roster, but they say he's questionable for start of season after tearing his ACL during his junior year with Colorado. Would you consider him a safe add, or should I simply pass on him all together?
stephania bell (2:51 PM)
De'Mon: Given that his status for next season could go either way, I'd pass...unless you have more time before you have to make that decision. He had surgery in January and it sounds like he was making good progress as of draft time. But given that guys take a little longer to come back from these injuries in the NBA, the team could opt to hold him out throughout the entire year. Redshirt him if you will. Seems like more and more teams are willing to do that nowadays to protect their investment
So Tulo's running around...will he play soon?
stephania bell (2:53 PM)
Rocky: Well, yes, technically he's running around some. But he's not doing anything baseball-specific yet as far as I've heard. So as far as the word "soon," not sure how you define that but it seems he's probably over a week away. Of course the caveat always is, we have to see how he responds to everything.
Rob (Frankfort, IL)
Good grief I am fed up with Cargo...The guy can't ever stay on the field...
stephania bell (2:57 PM)
Rob: He has had a bit of a tough year. Seems like the legs would have benefited from the down time for the finger but sometimes you wonder if the absence from regular game play begins to work against you. His participation dropped quite a bit last year, then fell off the cliff this year. Not sure quite yet what to make of him heading into next year.
I am a good example of playing one sport leading to an arm injury. I only played baseball growing up and even though I was a catcher and never pitched, I had 2 major shoulder operations before I turned 18.
stephania bell (2:58 PM)
Dan: Catcher is really hard on the shoulder too. Most people forget that is still repetitive overhead throwing.
Tanaka! Do you think he will be back this season?
stephania bell (2:58 PM)
Mike: Too soon to say. Until he throws with velocity without incident, it's hard to form any sbstantive opinion.
B Mand (Sarasota, FL)
Any updates on Dexter Fowler and AJ Pollock?
stephania bell (3:02 PM)
B Mand: Fowler is dealing with an injury that typically takes a month or so (which he's already surpassed) but still needs a rehab assignment, although it does sound like that is coming fairly soon. Maybe another week or ten days? As for Pollock, on his rehab assignment already. Also suspect another 10 days, give or take, as long as the hand doesn't give him any trouble (so far it hasn't).
stephania bell (3:03 PM)
THanks all for coming to the chat. Time for me to pass along the keys to the room. Hope we can do it again sometime next week. And hopefully it will be a healthier week for us all.