Let’s take a look at this morning’s injury news and notes:
Alex Rodriguez – New York Yankees – According to Marc Carig of the Newark Star-Ledger (click here for the article), “He is using a bat with a piece of tape wrapped around it, which he said has helped to alleviate the pressure coming from his top hand onto his bottom hand. He said that pressure has caused the pain in his troublesome left thumb. Rodriguez appears to be in line to play on Saturday.” Monitor the pregame lineup, but if he plays over the weekend he will be a must use option over the final few days of the season. The Yankees are going to want to get him repetitions to make sure he’s ready for October.
Joe Mauer – Minnesota Twins – Rhett Bollinger of mlb.com (click here for the article) is reporting that, “Joe Mauer’s season is over. The Twins’ catcher visited the Mayo Clinic on Thursday and was diagnosed with mild pneumonia.” Mauer finishes the season playing just 82 games, hitting .287 with 3 HR and 30 RBI over 296 AB. Cut bait in yearly formats at this point. As for his value in 2012, it will be interesting to see where he ranks among catchers, though he will definitely no longer be topping draft boards. The question is how far does he fall?
Francisco Liriano – Minnesota Twins – In a separate article (click here to view) Bollinger is reporting that, “Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano was activated from the disabled list before Friday’s game against the Indians, and is expected to pitch out of the bullpen for the next week.” While it’s possible he does make a start before the end of the season, it is impossible to trust him with your fantasy title on the line.
Jose Tabata – Pittsburgh Pirates – According to Rob Biertempfel (via Twitter), “Jose Tabata (wrist) will NOT play again for #pirates this season.” With a small fracture in his wrist, this news really shouldn’t be very surprising. He’s been out of action since September 5, so you already should have found a replacement. In yearly formats, move on immediately.
Sean Rodriguez – Tampa Bay Rays – Marc Topkin of the St. Petersburg Times (via Twitter), “Sean Rodriguez limited by stiff lower back, hopes to be able to play Saturday vs. LHP Lester”. Consider him day-to-day and monitor the pregame lineup, though he is not a top option at this point anyways. Rodriguez is hitting .220 with 7 HR and 11 SB, though he is hitting .276 against southpaws. If you are in a daily format, you could do worse then using him on the days when a lefty is on the mound.
Ryan Howard – Philadelphia Phillies – According to Jim Salisbury (via Twitter), “Ryan Howard says ankle is sore. Could play if had to. Cortisone shot possible before playoffs.” Consider him day-to-day, but there appears to be a good chance that he misses a few days to make sure he is completely over the issue (though he did double as a pinch hitter before being lifted for a pinch runner). The Phillies have shown that they will be cautious with their players down the stretch, so monitor the pregame lineup for now.
Adam Jones – Baltimore Orioles – Dan Connolly (via Twitter) is reporting that, “make a lineup change. Jones is not playing. Reimold is in the lineup now. Jones thumb still bothering him.” It appeared Jones is close to returning, being in the original lineup, but he’s not quite there yet. In fact, later in the evening Roch Kubatsko tweeted, “Adam jones will have MRI on right thumb tomorrow “. All fantasy owners can really do is monitor the pregame lineup and hope he plays by the end of the weekend.
Troy Tulowitzki/Carlos Gonzalez – Colorado Rockies – Both were out of the lineup last night and there is no word as to when they may return. They have battled injuries of late and at this time of the season you have to start to be concerned that they could be shutdown. While I wouldn’t expect that to happen, be smart and have a replacement you don’t mind using just in case.
Kevin Youkilis – Boston Red Sox – According to Brian MacPherson (via Twitter), “Youkilis out Saturday, too.” We had known he was going to sit out on Friday, but it appears the Red Sox are going to give him another day. Monitor the pregame lineup, but if he doesn’t play on Sunday those in weekly formats are going to have an extremely difficult decision. However, we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.
Tim Stauffer – San Diego Padres – Corey Brock (via Twitter) is reporting that, “Darnell left the game with a left shoulder strain. For Stauffer, it’s a right arm stiffness.” He tossed 6.2 shutout innings last night before being forced from the game and is now sporting a 3.73 ERA and 1.25 WHIP. Hopefully we get a bit more information on the situation before long, but right now consider the potential of him being shutdown.
Jason Kubel – Minnesota Twins – According to Tyler Mason (via Twitter), “Gardy also said it ‘doesn’t look good’ for Kubel (foot). Should find out more in the next day or two.” He’s been plagued by foot issues for much of the year and, with the Twins out of contention, this could mean the end of his season. Hopefully we hear something definitive soon, but owners need to plan accordingly.
Tsuyoshi Nishioka – Minnesota Twins – Rhett Bollinger (via Twitter) is reporting that, “Nishioka is also out for season with oblique strain.” Not shocking news and fantasy owners already should’ve had a replacement.
Cody Ross – San Francisco Giants – Andrew Baggerly (via Twitter) is reporting that, “Right hamstring strain for Cody Ross.” While his season may not be officially over, he’s too risky of a play over the final week and a half of the season.
Colby Rasmus – Toronto Blue Jays – He came off the DL, starting in CF and going 0-5 with 3 K. He has been a disappointment in 2011, but does have the potential to get hot and be a difference maker down the stretch. Monitor his progress over the weekend before making any decisions.