Given The News (April Return?!), What Is Ian Desmond’s 2017 Outlook?

by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)

It’s been a roller coaster ride for Ian Desmond owners, who feared the worst when news originally emerged of his broken hand (think 2-3 months of missed time).  Yesterday we got the flipside, as now the talk is that he could return to Colorado in the middle of April.  According to Nick Groke (via Twitter):

Ian Desmond (broken hand) is expected back in game action sometime in April, Bud Black said. Basically best possible news after Wed. surgery”

It’s a hard timeline to buy into, considering that Desmond had a plate inserted into his wrist, though it’s not an impossible one.  Even missing the first month of the season, returning May 1, the pure upside of Desmond playing half his games in Coors Field would make him an ideal selection as a player to stash in the middle rounds (think somewhere in the 8-12 range).

In five months of action you’d think he could go 15/15, as opposed to 20/20 (though the latter wouldn’t be impossible).  Of course that assumes that he’s going to return to be the same player that he was.  There are two different scenarios that could bring a negative outlook to Desmond for the remainder of ’17, given what they are currently saying and the perception that he could be rushing back:

  1. He ultimately needs a second DL stint
  2. He plays the entire season, but having never allowed his hand to heal he struggles with his power as he never reaches 100%

There’s always the fear that wrist/hand injuries are going to zap a player of his power.  That becomes even greater if the player fails to get back to 100% healthy (obviously), though Desmond would have the advantage of playing in Denver’s thin air.  While the Rockies are going to say the optimistic things now, don’t be surprised if they are ultimately be conservative with Desmond and his recovery.  They have a lot of money invested in him for the next several years and two weeks in April aren’t going to make a significant difference in the grand scheme of things.

We’ll use May 1 as the expected return date, for now, and as we said that still puts him in the mid-round range for draft day.  We’d say in the Round 10ish range, just to play it safe, is an ideal landing spot for the risk/reward he brings.  If you believe the Rockies are going to rush him back, though, while there are extra AB the overall outlook would drop and you will want to hold off to see if he hangs around for a few additional rounds before taking the risk.

Source – The Denver Post

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Make sure to check out our 2017 Rankings:

Standard League
OBP League
First Base01/16/1703/07/17
Second Base03/22/1703/09/17
Third Base02/06/1703/12/17
Outfield#1-20 |03/16/17

#21-40 |03/16/17
Starting Pitcher#1-20 |02/27/17

#21-40 |03/02/17
Relief Pitcher01/02/17--

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