Fantasy Injuries w/Stephania Bell
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday afternoon, fantasy injury expert Stephania Bell will stop by to discuss all things injury related. If you have a question on any athletes' sprains, breaks, tears, any injury related question, ask Stephania!
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Stephania Bell (3:02 PM)
Happy Day after the Fourth of July everyone! Hope it was a wonderful weekend. I will tell you this. It is HOT, HOT, HOT here in the east coast. Oh my goodness - I think we've topped 100 degrees. It seems like the season of the thumb injury...at least this last week. What's on your mind? We'll find out...
Hi Stephania, have you heard any news from Shin-Soo Choo's doctor visit today? Will the Soo Choo Train need surgery? And, if so, how long will he be out? Thanks!
Stephania Bell (3:04 PM)
Brad: Nothing official has come my way yet. But I will tell you this. The change in projection for him to approx eight weeks and the trip to the hand specialist all points in the direction of surgery. And along the lines of Utley, prob avg at eight weeks, although that may depend on what surgery ultimately involves. Assume two months.
Stephania: Love your work...it's been indispensable for all of us in tracking players' day by day medical woes. I've been offered Beltran for Liriano. I could use the pop--not worried about he speed. What I'm really concerned about is the completness of Beltran's recovery. Is he even going to be on the field a month from now? Your thoughts, please.
Stephania Bell (3:08 PM)
Dan: Thanks so much! And I'm glad to know that there are readers out there who appreciate it. Love to hear from you.And your question is one that I'm sure many folks are wondering about. I think everyone's resigned to the fact that Beltran won't be notching up steals. But he has been hitting the ball quite well throughout the rehab process. Granted, the level of play is always elevated a touch when you come back to the majors, but I think he'll deliver on the power, although it might not be consistently at first. The bigger question is can he stay healthy? I'd like to think that the slow return helps him in that regard, but it will also likely mean that he gets frequent rest. So if you go out and trade for him, it really should be where you can set a daily lineup, then I think the payoff might be there. Fingers crossed.
I've lost Roberts, Anderson, Morales, Chris R Young and now Choo. What do you know about his injury and do you think we are looking at Sept? I didn't even mention Reyes, do you think his injury will bother him long term?
Stephania Bell (3:11 PM)
Rich: Wow - you are suffering from an injury-cursed team. And we talked about Choo, but to follow on Reyes...the expectation is for him to be in the lineup tonight but he will only bat right-handed. He has a right-sided oblique strain so it's uncomfortable for him to bat lefty. Apparently batting is the main concern but I wonder if he has to make a quick defensive move whether it will bother him. They want him in there to run as well so they expect to use him. As long as there is no setback, it shouldn't be a long-term thing, but if he aggravates it, could turn into a DL stint.
If Choo's injury requires surgery will it have any impact on his abilities next season? He was one of my keepers...
Stephania Bell (3:12 PM)
JD: Shouldn't. This is one of those things where once fixed and well-healed it should not be an ongoing problem.
Bedard is actually not starting today. What a surprise. Any news on him?
Stephania Bell (3:15 PM)
John: Nothing other than a "stiff" shoulder. He was coming off his highest pitch count post-op (I think about 80-something). But honestly it did seem like he had limited rehab outings given the length of absence...and his history. While it sounds like not a big deal setback, it's still another setback. The last one cost him about a week to ten days time. And so we wait.
Could you discuss Josh Beckett's return from the DL and how you think he'll pitch in the second half of the season? Also, today is actually the Day After the Day after the Fourth of July!
Stephania Bell (3:18 PM)
Pete: Thanks for pointing out the correct date! See what happens when I get a day out of the office??? I still think Beckett is on track for a mid-to-late July return. He was switched to a simulated game appearance vs a true rehab outing given some weather issues but he still has time to get some more under his belt. The important thing is whether he continues to feel good after outings. SO far that has been the case. And I would look for a strong second half from him.
Shayne (Berkeley, CA)
Will we see Brian Roberts at all in 2010?
Stephania Bell (3:21 PM)
Shayne: I'm still of the opinion that he can still come back this year. I'm no longer of the opinion that I would save a spot on my fantasy roster for him. It's just too uncertain and so far, it's playing out that way with the ups and downs he's had with his back. This is something that may really require an offseason to get past, as in truly improve, but he still may be serviceable for the latter portion of the season. But it will lurk under the surface...
I was very excited about LaPorta's recent success. However, I'm nervous about his injury last night. Are we looking at a possible DL stint?
Stephania Bell (3:23 PM)
Chris: Definitely a possibility. He had concussion symptoms and was taken for CT. I have not heard the results of CT, but he will have to have the concussion signs/sx clear before getting back in the lineup. The team may want to wait a day or two before deciding but it would not be a surprise to see him end up there.
Victor Martinez... do you think his power will take a slide because of the hand injury?
Stephania Bell (3:26 PM)
Jon: Very interesting question. He has a fracture in the tip of his thumb and it's important that he get good healing going before he move the thumb. Then it will be somewhat stiff. He will have to get good grip with the thumb before he hits the ball the same. I think it would not be surprising if the transition shows up as a loss of power, at least initially. And since it's his catching glove thumb, how much it gets aggravated while playing could be an issue (although we'll see if they use him as DH, etc initially).
Does Yovanni Gallardo injury concern you? I just traded Andy Pettetti for him.
Stephania Bell (3:29 PM)
Nelly: Here's what I'll say. They're calling him day-to-day now but any opposite-side oblique injury is a concern in a pitcher. A true oblique injury averages 4-6 weeks for a pitcher so it may depend on severity, but these tend to linger a bit.
Hi Stephania. I read in a Yahoo fantasy blog that the results of LaPorta's CT Scan came back negative and that they were only precautionary in the first place. I have my fingers crossed he wont need a DL stint.
Stephania Bell (3:31 PM)
Mike: Thanks for the follow-up. CT scans usually are preliminary in these cases - done to make sure there's no bleed of the brain that's being missed. But it's important to remember that CT and MRI rarely show findings when there is a concussion, but the symptoms can still be significant. So I wouldn't assume that a negative CT means no DL, even though it's certainly good news. It all depends on whether he's showing any concussion-related signs or symptoms and how rapidly they're improving.
Stephania, Jorge De LaRosa was crushed in his last rehab start, is this due to the finger or because he hasn't pitched that much and has some rust to work off. I've had him stashed on the DL spot all year and am wondering if it was in vain.
Stephania Bell (3:33 PM)
Shane: Don't give up too quickly. De la Rosa has only had one really lousy outing. It was supposed to be his last but they probably don't want him heading back to the rotation on that note. Still, the important thing is that his finger is fine. He'll be back.
Due to the fact that the Red Sox lost Pedroia and Varitek to broken foots after fouling off a pitch, is there any talk about adding protection to cleats to prevent this from happening in the future?
Stephania Bell (3:34 PM)
Ryan: And V-Mart hurt his foot similarly right before he broke his thumb. It's a great question, probably someone has given it considerable thought in the shoe industry, but I am not aware of those plans. There has to be a balance between the functionality and comfort of the shoe with protection - always a challenge.
Scott (Boston, MA)
I'm sure you must cover this every week, but where is Jacoby Ellsbury? It's awfully worrisome seeing Dustin Pedroia in the clubhouse everyday, hearing updates about Beckett's and Lowrie's rehabs and nothing about Ellsbury.
Stephania Bell (3:39 PM)
Scott: Certainly a challenging and puzzling issue when it comes to Ellsbury. It seems as if both he and the team thought it better for him to be away to heal. His injury was so globally limiting (the thing about ribs is they hurt with every single breath/twist/reach, etc) so it makes it difficult to do ANY rehab of consequence. Meaning...you end up sitting around and it's depressing for everyone. Pedroia has an isolated foot injury and by taking the foot out of it, can do many other things.That said, Ellsbury's injury is taking a long time to heal. And the slowness has the team writing him off for the next few weeks at least, I think.
Jeff (Portland, ME)
Can we talk football? Do you really see Wes Welker returning for week 1? What is the best case scenario, from your medical perspective?
Stephania Bell (3:41 PM)
Jeff: Always room for a football question...after all, it won;t be long. I think Welker has done amazingly well and it's great to see. It will be interesting to see how the Patriots handle him. I would expect him to start camp on the PUP list but then it remains to be seen how long he's there. I just don't see them starting him Week 1. Despite all his progress, the hurdles to return to competition level are significant and they have depth at receiver...not that anyone fills "his" role, but they can get by.
chase utley seems to think he's gonna be back sooner rather than later. do you think that's possible? also, do you think that's a good idea?
Stephania Bell (3:43 PM)
Dan: I love the guy's work ethic and optimism...but I think it will be about 8 weeks. He will be splinted for 5 weeks. He thinks it will be quick return of ROM then back to baseball stuff and back in. But in my experience, coming out of these splints and casts always takes people by surprise when they find out HOW stiff they are. You can't just force the motion back. It's not a question of pain tolerance; it's how long does it take to handle the ball and handle the bat the way you need to to be effective. I'm confident they'll progress him at an appropriate pace. I just think it will take him longer than he thinks.
Stephania - any updates on Tulo? Will he make it back and productive before Labor Day? Thanks.
Stephania Bell (3:47 PM)
Bob: The latest report is that his wrist does appear to be healing well. The problem is that until he starts hitting we won't know just how much this injury will impact his hitting. He says he's keeping up his conditioning and has been loosely swinging a bat, playing catch...but even he knows it will be a whole new ball of wax once he really can start hitting.The original timetable of about 6 weeks looks to be pretty accurate.
Stephania, following up on the Welker question, it seems that he won't be back right away because the receiver that he is, he relies a lot on cuts and on that knee, it would be beneficial for him to rest as much as he can...running straight is one thing. Am I right?
Stephania Bell (3:49 PM)
Eric: I think you're right about the type of receiver he is and that taking longer. But I would say it's not so much rest, but the time it takes to return to that level of ability - and with that a level of confidence in his knee (since it happened non-contact) that he can place demands on it that he needs to without worry.
Joe Nathan - His rehab sounds as though it's going well. Is it realistic to see him firing on all cylinders next spring? Based on the limited number of pitches thrown by a reliever, does it reduce the recovery time since they don't need to be stretched out?
Stephania Bell (3:50 PM)
Amir: It's realistic...at this point, but there's still a lot of time. You are right, relievers don't usually need as lengthy of real "game" situations due to their role, but the healing element and the feel it takes to get command back take almost as long.
Any word on Manny?
Stephania Bell (3:51 PM)
Jason: Just that it did not appear to be a serious hamstring strain, but the decision to DL him was a pre-emptive strike against this turning into a bigger injury.
Mark (NY NY)
My favorite part about your chat, is I read your answers in my head in your soothing Stephania voice. Thanks for the help! When can we expect to see Brett Anderson back on the hill?
Stephania Bell (3:54 PM)
Mark: Hmm, soothing, that's nice (I appreciate that you did not say my annoying Stephania voice...ask my brother, that exists...). Anderson is expected to return a few days after the All-Star Break (like the following week) assuming all goes well, so...that's the hope.
Jeff (San Francisco)
Steph - do I have these SPs in order correctly for usefulness the rest of this year? De La Rosa, B. Anderson, Bedard. I'm hoarding all 3 but need to drop one.Thanks!
Stephania Bell (3:56 PM)
Hi Jeff in SF: Well, I like de la Rosa the most. Everyone who knows me knows I am skeptical about Bedard and his ability to stay healthy, even once he returns. But Anderson needs to prove that he too can stay healthy after going out twice with the same problem. Given that he's non-surgical, I'd rank him second, but he's not out of the woods completely to me. Overall though, agree with you and you probably could get good trade value out of Bedard if he returns soon (kind of like what the Mariners plan to do, right?)
Any update on Jason Heyward?
Stephania Bell (3:58 PM)
Jon: Apparently the splint was coming off Sunday so it just depends how he looks/feels swinging the bat over the next several days. I suppose he could appear in the All-Star game but we won't know until probably right before.
Brian (Fullerton, CA)
Stephania - I've got a couple of sneaky injured/post-injury players who I'm looking to stash for a great return on the investment. They are: Jordan Zimmermann, Derek Holland and Brandon Webb. Who do you think will have the greatest value this season? long term?THANKS!
Stephania Bell (4:00 PM)
Brian: Of the guys you mention, I like Zimmermann. He's looking sharp and we know what we got a glimpse of last year. Webb, although progressing, has been out of the game for over a year and Holland to me does not have the Zimmermann upside.
Stephania Bell (4:02 PM)
Looks like the Dutch are on their way to the World Cup Final....up 3 to 1 with less than 20 minutes to go...And on that note, I have to vacate the room for the next round of chatters. Thank you SO much for coming. Your great questions give me lots of ideas for the blogs.Have a great week (yay, it's short!) and Stay Healthy!