Print and Go Back ESPN: SportsNation

June 22, 3:00 PM ET
Fantasy Injuries w/Stephania Bell

Stephania Bell
  (3:03 PM)

Hi everyone - Thank you for coming!! Always look forward to your great thoughts, questions, sharing of ideas. Let's see what the hot topics are today...

Colin (Texas)

What's the word on Ike Davis? Any chance he's playing before the All-Star break?

Stephania Bell
  (3:05 PM)

Colin: Big test coming up for him. Believe he has a repeat MRI today and they will look at the area of the bone bruise. The next step, if all goes well, is working him back to running. I think it's doubtful he would be on the big league field before All-Star.

Rob (A ledge)

Can you compare the Pujols injury to Lee's and Floyd's. Everyone points out that they were injured on "similar plays," but that doesn't mean that the injuries or prognosis are also similar. Thought?

Stephania Bell
  (3:08 PM)

Rob: You couldn't be more correct. And while I understand everyone's fear about any hitter suffering an injury on/near the wrist, they are not all equal. Pujols suffered a fractured (and by all accounts a very tiny crack) distal radius, longer explanation is in my Monday blog. Lee fractured both the ulna and radius (BOTH forearm bones) near the wrist and had to be immobilized for a longer period. Floyd had perhaps the worst. Described as a "shattered" wrist, he suffered multiple fractures to the small carpal bones in the wrist joint, ultimately needing surgery with multiple pins to repair it. This type of injury would be more consistent with a motorcycle accident than a baseball game. So Pujols had a far lesser injury than those two. Now, you still have to hope all the healing goes well, etc, but so far looks good for Pujols.

gary andrews (fort wayne)

Any word on when David Wright will return?

Stephania Bell
  (3:10 PM)

Hi Gary: Like Davis, it's a big week for Wright. Another CT scheduled for his back and the big Q will be is there enough healing for them to decide to clear him for baseball activity. It's as simple as that. If he can progress, then I think you see him back within two weeks or so. Maybe they hold him until after All-Star just to take it slow. If not, well, then all timetable out the window.

Brendan (LI)

STARphania bell help! Players dropping like flies to injuries. Is Strasburg worth holding till sept? Any chance of return?

Stephania Bell
  (3:13 PM)

Brendan: Hi there. I actually give a lengthier answer on this in today's blog (plug for later) :)But I will say that if it were me I wouldn't hold on. The chance he pitches is slim- - and it would likely just be a few games. I'd rather use my slots for guys who can really contribute or a short-term DL guy who I expect back and can give me a lot more in July/August.

Jason (Jacksonville, FL)

What are your thoughts on Hughes ROY? Thanks

Stephania Bell
  (3:16 PM)

Jason: OK gang - help me out. I'm assuming ROY is rest of year? Have to admit to being somewhat new to all the abbreviations. I know LOL...not much else. But assuming I'm right on ROY, I actually like Hughes going forward, but can't give you a whole lot of science behind why. No one really understands what happened to him this spring, but it's as if his arm wasn't ready - and it just did not cooperate. He's had every test under the sun with no significant findings (which makes me feel better) and then he got the chance to start from scratch. Assuming no setbacks in the remainder of his rehab assignment outings, why not go for it?

Mark (Nashua)

What chance do you think Roberts regains any value this season after the All Star break or do you think he'll have a similar track like Morneau? He's currently on my DL and I'm debating between stashing and cutting him. Thanks.

Stephania Bell
  (3:17 PM)

Mark: Given the fact that he was recently denied clearance to accelerate his activities, I'd say you have to evaluate the value on your DL spot. If I need the space for a short-termer, I'd cut bait. There's just no way of telling how long this can drag out and while I wouldn't equate his situation to Morneau's, I think the fact he's remained status quo recently is pretty telling. Bummer. He seemed to start off the season so well.

Damon (MO)

You seem cautiously optimistic on Pujols injury. Why do you think we had reports yesterday of "6 weeks minimum" as opposed to the original 4-6 weeks? Anything to this or unreliable source?

Stephania Bell
  (3:20 PM)

Damon: As a follow-up to the Pujols situation, the team always gave the 4-6 week estimate and that's consistent with the time for a small non-displaced fracture to heal and a player to return, although we never really know how effective they're going to be. Now we hear that he has another CT scheduled for 10 days from now (meaning the crack really was small and they may see enough progress to clear him for some activity sooner), and he also has less pain and has maintained his grip strength. All of that bodes well for him. BUT - Pujols himself acknowledged no reason to rush and end up hurting himself further so it will not be pushed unnecessarily.

Jeff (Portland, ME)

Stephania, running short of third baseman. What can you tell me about Martin Prado? He has a staph infection, but no time table for a return. Something to be concerned about or should he be back sooner rather than later. Thanks. Love your work.

Stephania Bell
  (3:27 PM)

Jeff: Why thank you, very kind. Prado had this staph infection which the medical personnel were concerned enough about to open up the area and essentially snip out some infection, rinse it fully and completely, treat the wound, then let it heal. And by the way, they had to treat his left knee too in addition to the calf because it had spread there. It has to heal from the inside out so there has to be time for wound closure (part of the lengthy process) and he remains on antibiotics for some time post in order to ensure the infection is gone. These staph infections have become more and more resistant to treatment so there is no fooling around once they see its presence. The reason for no timetable is all the variability in terms of the wound healing and establishing the infection is clear. He is doing some upper body workouts but this one could take a while. We may hope to get a better idea in another couple weeks.

Nick (Owego, NY)

Are you starting Peavy tonight off the DL? And what about Colby Lewis?

Stephania Bell
  (3:29 PM)

Nick: I would. Comfortable with him being ready to go. And Lewis? I guess his inconsistency is scary (although his last outing was good) but there's no injury there that I'm worried about. Against Astros I'm ok with him.

Matt (Atlanta)

When your computer crashed you were about to give your thoughts on Buster Posey's long-term status. For those of us making decisions for 2012, can you tell us whether you expect him to return to his star status or to struggle with this injury for some or all of next season? Thanks!

Stephania Bell
  (3:33 PM)

Matt: Thanks for bringing this to the chat - saw it in the mailbag but hadn't gotten to it yet! This is really tough b/c it is just such an incredibly LONG road back, not only to return to baseball after this injury but to return to catcher especially. Then again, he's young and a great athlete which definitely helps. But if he forms excessive scar (some of which you need for healing but too much limits motion) or runs into trouble along the way, there's no's a gamble for sure. And as much of a Giants fan as I am, I'm not sure it's a gamble I want to take in a keeper league.

Austin (Boston)

Marcum just got pulled, any news on the severity?

Stephania Bell
  (3:34 PM)

Austin: So I'm learning - but don't know much yet. Will keep my eye out as the chat continues.

Stephania Bell
  (3:36 PM)

Follow-up on Marcum: Apparently yesterday ROenicke said Marcum would go "frame-by-frame_ after 3 innings. Well, he went 3 innings, so maybe they just decided that was all they wanted to test today. Don't know for sure yet - we'll probably hear more after the game, but it's not time to be alarmed just yet.

Dan (NY)

Any reason to worry about B. League?

Stephania Bell
  (3:39 PM)

Dan: League has a contusion apparently in leg (near calf) and it sounds like he could be out of commission for a few days but hopes are no DL time.

Leo (Boston)

What can you tell me about Jason Heyward? He has been a bit of a disappointment, but I have given him some slack due to the shoulder injury. But since his return, he has not be producing. Give him time or don't expect much this year?

Stephania Bell
  (3:41 PM)

Leo: I still think he needs some time to see if he can get on track. I'm not convinced the shoulder issue is behind him completely but think he felt better enough to give it a we'll see whether it creeps back up to the point where it's bothering him on a regular basis. I said a while back that I was concerned about his production the rest of the year given some of the "instability-like" symptoms - hope he can find a way.

Tom (PA)

Eric Bredard, have you seen enough of him this year to be confident of health of the rest of the way?

Stephania Bell
  (3:42 PM)

Tom: Never. I need a full year of Bedard health to feel any sort of confidence. And even then, just not sure I would.

Rachel (Hattiesburg)

Is there any reason Teixeira and A Rod arent starting the 1st game today?

Stephania Bell
  (3:43 PM)

Rachel: Just limiting them both to only one game so they get the nightcap.

Chris (Sacramento)

How is Tommy Hanson looking? Should we be worried ROS?

Stephania Bell
  (3:46 PM)

Chris: So I'm also learning that ROS is rest of season and some believe ROY should be preserved for Rookie of the Year. Hey - I'm flexible. All are good with me - just want to be sure I'm answering your questions...Hanson apparently had another good session today. Says his shoulder feels really good and he was letting go on some of those pitches approaching max effort. He looks on track to return 6/28 but I'm guessing he'll throw again later this week/weekend to test it one more time.

LeAnne (Washington)

1st time fantasy player here. I have J Weeks and am hoping Mark Ellis stays on the bench. Do you know when Ellis is suppost to return?

Stephania Bell
  (3:47 PM)

Hi LeAnne and welcome to the club: Ellis has been activated from the DL but it seems like the A's are happy with Weeks at 2B. So not sure how they'll use Ellis - but I think you're safe with Weeks.

Joe (DFW)

Any word on Morneau?

Stephania Bell
  (3:50 PM)

Joe: The cast they put him in to protect his wrist is supposed to come off late this week. That said, I think the cumulative effects of all he's been dealing with (pinched nerve in his neck with weakness in his left shoulder, along with the inflamed left wrist) are problematic and that the rest of the season will likely be up and down for him.

JT (Shirley, MA)

Strasburg or Wainwright as a keeper looking towards 2012??

Stephania Bell
  (3:52 PM)

JT: Simply from the rehab point of view, Strasburg has quite a jump on Wainwright. Strasburg could potentially (theoretically) be approaching readiness by late this year, even if he never actually plays. So then it's just another five months of rest/recovery, etc. Wainwright will be at a year in spring training and while he could be ready as start of season approaches, it could meander into the season as well.

Terry (Philly)

Oswalt just doesn't look right. Would another DL stint help him if he's not fully recovered from the injury?

Stephania Bell
  (3:55 PM)

Terry: Totally reasonable question given the fact that Oswalt is just not himself. His velocity is down and he just hasn't been himself since coming off DL. Then again, not sure a 2 week DL does the trick. There's no word that specifically his back is bothering him but you have to wonder if there's something in the core that is failing him, leading to velocity issues. they won't DL him for this but I always worry if a guy is somehow compensating that he ends up with another more serious injury (like his arm) if not careful.

David (Boston)

Hi Stephania,Any word on Alvarez?

Stephania Bell
  (3:58 PM)

David: All we've ehard about Alvarez is that he's not expected to return before the All-Star Break. Sounds like there may have been some internal friction where the team may not have felt that he was fully forthcoming as to how the quad was feeling, perhaps contributing to the setbacks. So...they will take it slow for sure now.

Frank (SF)

Stephania, with third baseman dropping like flies, I see that David Freese is expected to return next week. Does everything still look on track? I need to make a quick move to get him as we will all be vying for some much needed help at the hot corner.

Stephania Bell
  (4:01 PM)

Frank: So far, that still appears to be the plan. Of course everyone wants to see how he does throughout the week of the rehab assignment. The good news is that the injury should be well healed (after the surgery). The concern is does he ahve all the grip ability, etc to do everything he needs to - and does he have his timing back. May take him a bit once he gets back into the lineup to return to how he was hitting (they hope to get him back at that level) but so far, so good.

Doug (Oregon)

Sandoval...any reported issues with injury or is all recovered now?

Stephania Bell
  (4:02 PM)

Doug: No reported issues. Have to assume the hand only gets better with time as the scar tissue gets less sensitive.

Danny (Dallas)

Jeter, good to go after DL, or problems with the injury all season?

Stephania Bell
  (4:04 PM)

Danny: We will not know until he plays without incident. Can only really test the calf in the quick-reaction scenarios which will only come in game. That's why we see so many guys suffer setbacks. So the hope is that it's not an issue - but no one, not even the folks on the ground taking care of him, will know for sure.

Stephania Bell
  (4:06 PM)

OK everyone - time for me to vacate the room. If you're looking for advice for your poker game, my buddy Andrew Feldman is chatting NOW here on more injury updates, my newest blog entry will post soon, featuring Twitter questions and your e-mails! Tomorrow it's the 06010 podcast, Fantasy Focus video and Baseball Tonight at midnight! Round the clock coverage for your entertainment...stay healthy!