Chat with Stephania Bell
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday 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 (3:08 PM)
Hi friends:Stuck in traffic in Boston (moving from baseball venue last night to football practice tonight) - but found a friendly coffee shop, so now I'm caffeinated and internet-connected...and here we are! What's on your mind?
Steph how long till Span returns to the lineup? Thanks
Stephania Bell (3:12 PM)
Rachel: He's back - may not have noticed b/c didn't get a hit, but after all, was first game with team in a couple months. So far, have not heard any follow-up but presume he will be in lineup ofen going forward.
Hearing good things about Strasberg---worth picking up (dropping Buchholz) and stashing?
Stephania Bell (3:14 PM)
Brian: Seems to be a weekly topic...which is understandable since the updates on his status keep coming. He is expected to begin his rehab starts perhaps this Sunday. So, there is a chance he makes an appearance for the Nats this September. But keep in mind, and I know they're very different injuries, Santana made a rehab start, now pulled back with soreness. Just saying, every new hurdle needs to be cleared, so there is no LOCK on Strasburg playing this year, although seems to be in line to do so.
Troy Tulowitzki's Pinkie Finger (Denver, CO)
Am I a serious injury or am I just silly like someone submitting a question under the name "Troy Tulowitzki's Pinkie Finger?"
Stephania Bell (3:15 PM)
You should know that you're supposedly playing today...so couldn't have been too awful.
Al (Wausau, WI)
Stephania, a co-worker friend of mine informed me that Hanley Ramirez, the starting SS on my fantasy baseball team, was day-to-day due to a shoulder injury. Are you familiar with the type of injury he has? If so, how might you recommend how I use/not use him in my fantasy baseball lineup? I enjoy your chats - keep up the great work!
Stephania Bell (3:18 PM)
Al: Thanks for the nice comment. Hanley is, in fact, day-to-day after suffering what the team called a shoulder sprain last night. Took a dive and was clearly in pain. The diagnosis is generic and doesn't tell us exactly what happened, making it a bit difficult to project exactly what we think (was it an AC sprain, something else?) It sounds like he could miss a couple days although that has not been specified, just guessing based on the pain he had at the time. I would hold off using him until I saw him back in action once and was confident he could play wihtout issue.
What do you think about Oswalt?
Stephania Bell (3:20 PM)
Chris: think it's great he's headed back to the rotation given how awful he felt not so long ago. That said, his back is not "fixed" per se, he has a condition that could flare up at any time. Really no way to know. I think he's bound to be more effective now that he was when he went out, but it comes with some risk that it may not last.
Haven't heard anything about Rickie Weeks in a while, are we still looking at mid September?
Stephania Bell (3:24 PM)
Darrin: As is often the case in the early stages after an injury that severe, we don't hear much...b/c there isn't much to tell. All of what he's doing early on is rehab oriented, no doubt trying to get pain and swelling under control and work on basic range of motion, maybe keep up cardiovascular work in other ways. Bottom line is they can't offer us much about his potential return when it's so early. So not much has changed in that there's a wide range of projection for his return. I'm still a bit skeptical, just knowing how tough it can be to recover from a severe sprain to the level necessary to perform as a pro.
Jacob (Decatur, Il)
Saw the mock draft 2.0, loved your team but had a couple of questions to ask. Have you heard anything from the rams camp to suggest Steven Jackson isnt going to slow down this year as he has in the past. Also, you picked Jermichael Finley before Gates at TE, do you think his injury will slow him down at all or are you all in with J Finley?
Stephania Bell (3:27 PM)
Sure Jacob, I'll switch to football, especially since you took the time to look at our mock draft. Wasn't thrilled with my team actually, but part of it was my draft position. Most of it was my lack of knowledge about how some of these guys will perform given next to no practice so far. But...I will say that I think Jackson is now the value pick I got him for (never was a fan in top 5 but like where he came to me in draft). And yes, I'm concerned about Gates' foot until further notice. I was hoping he'd be further along right now. I understand they want to be cautious. But whether this is caution or concern, I still need to figure out. Finley has had a long time to rehab, has been working his tail off and is hungry since he lost virtually the entire season. Like him.
Johnny V (Brooklyn)
Shin Soo Choo! Back mid-August?
Stephania Bell (3:31 PM)
Johnny V: All signd so far pointing to that. He's been taking some swings, may take live BP this week. Is getting through steps necessary to go on rehab assignment. The next issue is what can we expect when he first gets back. reserving judgment until I see what he does on a rehab outing, how well is he connecting with the ball, when he has to play offense and defense and react, how will he perform? Right now, barring no setbacks, his timetable looks on track, but we don't know how much he'll deliver.
How serious is J. Santana's setback?
Stephania Bell (3:33 PM)
Kevin: Serious enough to send him back to MD for recheck. That said, sometimes those end up being visits of reassurance (everything looks good, just take it slow, etc, etc). But they can be visits that end up changing the entire rehab schedule. I still think he's done very well to date and even if they withhold him from pitching for a while, I don't see it as panic time. So we're waiting on the outcome of that visit...
Hey Steffy....how about a Mccann update? He's been my MVP so far, I need him back ASAP
Stephania Bell (3:35 PM)
Matt: Hate to disappoint, but it's in the same vein as Weeks (even though his injury wasn't as serious appearing). Only a week out so we won't hear much. No big news or change in plan from the team.
Josh Johnson begins a throwing program today? Thoughts?
Stephania Bell (3:39 PM)
Hi Bryan: key word is "scheduled" - don't know yet if it happened. Look, I am not holding out big hopes for this season, but that doesn't mean that the team and the rehab staff and the athlete throw in the towel. There are a number of reasons to work on getting him back to throwing (in the absence obviously of some major injury), including setting up confidence heading into next season. When a guy thinks he has a chance of getting back into rotation before season is over, helps with motivation, focusing on a structured timetable. Has to be approached that way - but in the end, we can see that the clock does not allow us a lot of leeway for any more setbacks.
Jimmy (San Fran)
Any News on Cargo? Is he coming back saturday? Thanks!!
Stephania Bell (3:42 PM)
Jimmy: This is interesting. He took his first BP Monday and said he felt great. Thought it was getting better quicker than expected. But this wrist has given him trouble since late last year. It looks as if he could progress enough for team to bring him back Saturday, but in the past month, it's been the unexpected things (including defensive dives, hard swings) that have triggered setbacks. Is he really assured of having all that behind him? Not convinced. He certainly may come back and play without issue. But I'm going to be skeptical until I see him play the rest of the season without a problem.
Jacob (Decatur, Il)
After hearing initial reports on Beltre with the Rangers it didnt look so pleasant and the possibility of an early return was bleak. But now i read he took BP last night, any chance he comes back earlier than expected, if not, plausible time range?
Stephania Bell (3:44 PM)
Jacob: Encouraging that he took BP because initially it did seem slow and he wa shaving lingering feelings of the hamstring "grabbing." Sounds like he turned a corner, but until he's doing the things that actually really test his hammie (like run and run hard), we won't know. I don't see him returning early (like at 15 days). Still think 3 weeks is about the best outlook.
How surprised are you that Chase Utley has been able to come back and play the way that he has? Many wondered if his knee injury was career-threatening.
Stephania Bell (3:47 PM)
Doc: Very. Which is a testament to what he's done and how he's managed the condition. If he had cartilage damage in his knee (which was reported), then he still has it. it doesn't go away. But he has done some things to help compensate and take some "load" off the knee...for the patella (kneecap) sometimes it comes down to extensive stretching and flexibility changes to alter quad tightness along with work on balancing the strength of other leg muscles. Also, he is no doubt treating it well before and after play, etc. Nonetheless, hard to understate what he's been able to do.
Adam (Bucks Co., Pa)
Stephania, have you heard any recent reports about Paul Konerko? Is he expected to return tonight and if he's not able to go, how likely would you rate a stint on the 15 day? Thanks
Stephania Bell (3:49 PM)
Adam: he is not in the lineup for Weds. I don't think he is headed for the DL since it sounds like the team expects him to take BP. it also sounds like they hope to have him back in the nect couple of days. We will see - literally a day-to-day situation.
Alex (New Hampshire)
How's Tony Romo feeling these days? I know he's had a long time to recover, but are you worried about him going forward this season?
Stephania Bell (3:50 PM)
Alex: Don't think there's reason to be. Collarbones are funny, sometimes don't heal well. But I think what really helped him was not coming back last year. he avoided contact and the threat of re-injury and had a long time to heal. All reports suggest the bone has fully healed and that he is throwing well. Haven't seen him yet of course, but am not overly concerned.
Go Niners! How's your boy Gore doing?
Stephania Bell (3:51 PM)
Joe: Well, he's in camp, which is good. Earlier this summer he was doing full workouts, running hard, no indication there was anything lingering in the hip. Reports from Niners camp are that he was being featured already in practice, including on a lot of pass plays. So...sounds good to me.
Drew (NY )
Injury prone MJD, what do we think about him lasting all year? over/under 11 games?
Stephania Bell (3:54 PM)
Drew: Can't believe I posted this b/c I hate the over/under...reason being there are too many variables that I can't control, like a lineman sits on his knee bent in an awkward position and his year is over - that could happen in Week 3 and would have nothing to do with how healthy he was coming into the year.But since I did pick your question, I'll say over. Lots of folks down on him and I understand why. Wear and tear, lots of work, lots of mileage. Then the injury last year. Playing with a torn mensicus can be hard on the inside of the knee - and I can see that ultimately taking a toll in the long-term. But in the short-term he just had it cleaned up and worked very, very hard in the offseason on his rehab and getting back into playing shape. So I actually like him more coming into this year. Maybe I won't feel that way next year.
Jack (San Francisco)
Hi Stephania. Thanks for all your great info. It sounds like Buchholz and Wright have same back problem, so we can expect full recovery for Buchholz this season? Also, any updates on Kenley Jansen. Thanks!
Stephania Bell (4:00 PM)
Jack: Fellow SF friend, thank you. Jansen is on the DL retro to 7/27 (cardiac arrhythmia) and while it sounds like he's doing OK, I'm sure they will be cautious in bringing him back. Hard to predict much in way of timetable.As far as Buchholz, yes, similar in that he has a stress fracture. Don't know the detail as to what level of the spine Wright's injury was. Buchholz has what has been reported to be a "new" injury superimposed on a chronic, long-standing one. Little tougher to project how long it will be for him. If it were May, I'd say, no problem, he'll be back. But the calendar works against him here and they will not allow him to press himself back into service in the presence of pain. So while he is eager to get back (and why not let him be motivated in his rehab process with the idea of being able to get back), his spine will progrss at its own pace, which may not allow him enough time to get back to the form necessary to return to competition. We can expect a storng recovery, just don't know if it can happen this year.
Stephania Bell (4:02 PM)
OK gang - time for me to exit the room. Thanks so much for coming. There's plenty going on with baseball in full swing and football around the corner. I'll be posting from camps, on podcasts (Thursday!) and wherever else injury news is happening. Feel free to follow along at @Stephania_ESPN. Talk to you all soon!! Stay healthy!