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April 30, 3:00 PM ET
Fantasy Injuries with Stephania Bell

Stephania Bell
  (3:02 PM)

Good afternoon friends. I'm sitting in the fantasy football rankings summit and conducting this chat at the same time. Please forgive me if I have to pause occasionally to chime in on some football here. (Can't believe it's that time already) In the meantime, lots going on in the world of baseball news, so here we go...

Sam (Seattle)

I saw Hanley Ramirez pinch hit last night. Does mean we can expect him in the lineup tonight?

Stephania Bell
  (3:04 PM)

Sam: Yes, it's his bobblehead night. Think he had his eye on this date if his thumb cooperated, which it has. Credit the surgeon and the rehab staff for a progressive recovery program that has allowed him to be ready over two weeks ahead of time.

Dave (NY)

When will Jason Heyward be back and what can we expect from him when he returns?

Stephania Bell
  (3:07 PM)

Dave: Right now, it looks as if late May is the target. While it is definitely a little slower than we've seen a couple guys go (Holliday comes to mind), it's certainly within the realm of normal and we have to keep in mind that people recover at different rates. In the Atlanta Journal-Constitution article from yesterday, Heyward said he feels like he could "pull" something and with how he swings, the worry is that he could strain an oblique - or have some other abdominal injury - which could sideline him for much longer. The date is not a lock but it seems as if the end of the month is a reasonable target right now.

charles (couch)

How quickly do you typically insert hitters into your lineup that are fresh off the DL?

Stephania Bell
  (3:09 PM)

Charles: Totally depends on the player and the injury. No rules set in stone. For instance, I would insert Hanley right away, not overly concerned about him. When Corey Hart comes back, I'm waiting. Want to see how the knee responds.

GIANTS (SF)

Thoughts on Brett Anderson's ankle?

Stephania Bell
  (3:11 PM)

Giants (yay): Aggravated apparently when he was forced into duty last night. Sounded like they expected him to only miss one start (last night) and were hoping for a Saturday return. Don't know yet what happens next but seems he could miss Saturday now.

Jesse (MN)

Any update on David Wright and Panda I have both on my team and in my weekly locked line up so im worried

Stephania Bell
  (3:13 PM)

Jesse: Sounds like they think the Wright situation not serious. His neck was too sore to start him but he did pinch hit. Panda, as I said before season started was likely to happen, had a flare up of the elbow-related symptoms. Not clear whether it was elbow pain or actual nerve pain but this is likely to be an ongoing intermittent thing. Question will be whether it gets to the point where they feel the need to address bone spur surgically.

Preston (VA)

Timetable for Stanton? Being put on the DL so fast worries me..

Stephania Bell
  (3:14 PM)

Preston: No timetable offered yet. It does tell you that they felt it was severe enough right away (the "pop") to make the move. No further word on MRI but I'd plan on at least three weeks.

Mike (NY)

Safe to put Aybar back in at SS tonight?

Stephania Bell
  (3:15 PM)

Mike: Yes. Think he was ready a few days ago.

Anthony (STL)

What's the prognosis now on Motte, now that he's able to play catch for 2 consecutive days with out pain?

Stephania Bell
  (3:16 PM)

Anthony: Still guarded with the optimism. For me, I want to see him throw hard without pain before I get encouraged. Even then, given his injury, not sure it lasts. Would be great if it does but I'm not holding out a ton of hope.

Nate (Mpls)

Grienke was throwing from 60 feet today... when do you think he gets off of the DL?

Stephania Bell
  (3:18 PM)

Nate: He can't throw hard until he's pain-free - which he isn't - so there's a bit of a holding pattern here. Once he starts unrestricted throwing, I think he'll progress quickly because he wasn't forced to be on an extended downtime. I still think he beats the 8 week projection but it's more of a hunch this early. And at best, prob 6 weeks.

Mario ((KS))

In regards to Dylan Bundy, what exactly is a "flexor mass?"

Stephania Bell
  (3:18 PM)

Mario: Flexor/pronator muscle group. Attaches toward the inside of the elbow, very close to the UCL.

shane (charlotte n.c.)

Talk about Stausburg...What is the danger.. forearm tightness does not sound good!

Stephania Bell
  (3:21 PM)

shane: Right now the Nationals' GM - and Strasbrug - making it seem like much ado about nothing. Although Davey Johnson seemed more concerned last night. Concern understandable when you see a guy appearing like he's not really settling in and also is losing his command. It was only intermittent - and Strasburg is not going to divulge anything - but tightness in the forearm can range from the completely benign to a signal of something more serious. Can't do much other than wait to see what happens next (and by all accounts he is going to make his next start) to see whether this is a singular episode or the beginning of something worse. Calling it a yellow flag at this point.

Me (1st place)

Anything new on Aaron Hill?

Stephania Bell
  (3:23 PM)

Nope. It's still early in the process. Have to wait until the bone heals more to allow him to return to baseball activities so no update on the timeline.

danny (ronkonkoma, ny)

I traded for Josh johnson last week, mostly because of your rave reviews of him from the preseason, mainly in regards to his health. It looks like hes going to make this next start but did that arm tightness raise any major red flags? Still feel good about him going forward?

Stephania Bell
  (3:25 PM)

Danny: Uh-oh, my fault? I still have confidence in him and think this is a guy who knows and understands his body much better now than he did a couple years ago. I don't have major concerns. I know in the spring he was working on making a couple of adjustments to his mechanics on some of his pitches and is still struggling intermittently with locating them. It could have an effect on some of what he's feeling. I think (hope) that he sould be fine going forward.

Adam (Dallas)

Any update on Jayson Werth? was last night serious?

Stephania Bell
  (3:26 PM)

Adam: Doesn't sound like it but earlier today got the impression they might rest him a day or two to let things settle.

Jim (Harrisburg, PA)

To further expand on the Motte question, are you saying he will require Tommy John Surgery eventually anyway?

Stephania Bell
  (3:27 PM)

Jim: Obviously he's hoping to avoid it. I'm not saying it's an absolute, just that the odds aren't in his favor.

Brendan (Massachusetts)

Dayan Viciedo update? Have not seen a single mention of him or his injury timetable

Stephania Bell
  (3:29 PM)

Brendan: The plan was to give him about a week of complete rest. If totally symptom free then they resume baseball activities and eventual to rehab games. Makes it sound like they think not long past the two weeks but obliques often take a little longer. Would not be looking for him before 3 weeks. At least.

Dave (NYC)

Looks like Brian McCann should be back in about a week, what are you expecting to see from him once he returns? Wait and see approach or plug him into your lineups right away?

Stephania Bell
  (3:31 PM)

Dave: the issue you'll have with McCann is that he's not going to play every day. I have no problem putting him in right away because he's been hitting for a while and I expect him to deliver at the plate if not immediately, then shortly after. But they plan to keep 3 catchers and he will get rested, not play every day when he gets back. And he's still not making all the hard throws, another reason to give him days off in between. So you'll need to monitor the Braves daily lineups if you use him out of the gate.

mike (minneapolis)

Do you see Kevin Youkilis's injury as a nagging one? I'm not sure if I should use a DL slot for him or Beachy? Thoughts?

Stephania Bell
  (3:33 PM)

Mike: Absolutely. This is not his first go-round with the back problems. I suspected he'd end up on the DL. No magic treatment, nothing alarming on MRI, but this is the nature of chronic low back pain. The hope is that the extended rest will be enough time (obviously one week wasn't enough) but even if it is, don't be surprised if it crops up again. This is not going to be an issue that just "disappears" for him.

Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)

Will Yankees SS Derek Jeter be Out for the Season Because his Broken Ankle is not Healing Properly?

Stephania Bell
  (3:36 PM)

Chris: No, shouldn't be. He actually had a separate stress fracture that occurred in his ankle. Puzzling but not unheard of. May be a consequence of him overloading the ankle in an abnormal fashion. In other words, as he was returning if he was compensating for discomfort or weakness he may have overloaded and ended up with this secondary injury. Now it's a matter of getting the bone to heal, building the conditioning back up. It will take time but I'm pretty confident we'll see him sometime in July.

John (NJ)

Is Pujols feeling better?

Stephania Bell
  (3:37 PM)

John: Somehow he seems to be slogging through. Must be a little better to be getting some time back at first base. He's hardly pain-free and it's a situation to keep an eye on given the likelihood that it flares up again.

TJ (Chicago)

Is Michael Morse's pinkie injury lingering? His strong start seems like ancient history already. Does injury explain his sapped power?

Stephania Bell
  (3:39 PM)

TJ: It's interesting. I don't think the finger injury per se because what he had and where it was shouldn't impact his hittin that much. But sometimes it's just the interruption of the rhythm a player is in that is as disruptive as anything. My sense is that this may be as much of a reason for his slump as anything.

Tyler (Northbrook)

Tulo in the lineup tonight? Any concerns with that injury long term or just a lucky break?

Stephania Bell
  (3:42 PM)

Tyler: I have not seen anything definitive about his status yet. The hope is that there is nothing long term. If he just pinched his cuff on that slide it shouldn't be too significant once the acute pain/inflammation decrease. If he has a deeper contusion, might affect him at the plate. I'm guessing that's what they're looking for in BP before making that final decision.

Ian (Raleigh)

What should we expect from Aramis given the Brewers plan to skip his rehab assignment?

Stephania Bell
  (3:45 PM)

Ian: Good question. I really don't know. The Brewers have been vague about his injury in the first place. This was the second injury to his knee after the first one happened in the spring. My biggest concern given the limited info is that this will happen again. The wrong kind of slide especially could set him back. And without going on assignment but being out a few weeks? Seems like he could be a bit rusty. Also wondering if we'll see hesitation running the bases.

Adrian (NC)

Thoughts on Lackey's first start off the DL? Looked fine to me, but I'm no doctor....

Stephania Bell
  (3:46 PM)

Adrian: I thought he had a pretty solid outing the first time back. Most importantly, no pain. Looks to have been a minor issue after all.

Ryan (Glen Ellen, CA)

I know it's still a ways away, but do you think Jose Reyes' SB potential is affected when he returns? Or is he a decent target for second half speed?

Stephania Bell
  (3:48 PM)

Ryan: Sounds like he's making decent progress, maybe even a bit better than expected at this point. But it's still only basic getting around activity. Until he starts doing baseball-related work and really testing the ankle, it's hard to speculate - but after an injury like he had, that's where the biggest challenge will come. And I wonder how it will be mentally getting back to sliding. After all it was a hesitation there that got him injured in the first place.

Mark (Green Bay)

Anything new on Granderson timetable?

Stephania Bell
  (3:49 PM)

Mark: Still looks like early May if all goes well with live hitting, etc. He has been right on track all along so I don't see any reason why it would change.

Zack (Texas)

Should we be concerned at all about Neil Walker's cut hurting his productivity when he comes back? I know the tendons were safe but it sounded like a very severe gash.

Fish (Pittsburgh)

Any concerns with Ortiz and re-injury? Just traded Lowrie and Valverde for him.

Stephania Bell
  (3:51 PM)

Zack: You're right. It was a deep gash - and so fortunate that it missed the tendons. Depends how tight the scar tissue gets in the area. If it makes it difficult to close his hand well around the bat, then yes, will be a problem. Not sure he's tested it yet but is expected to soon.

Stephania Bell
  (3:51 PM)

Zack: You're right. It was a deep gash - and so fortunate that it missed the tendons. Depends how tight the scar tissue gets in the area. If it makes it difficult to close his hand well around the bat, then yes, will be a problem. Not sure he's tested it yet but is expected to soon.

Stephania Bell
  (3:51 PM)

Zack: You're right. It was a deep gash - and so fortunate that it missed the tendons. Depends how tight the scar tissue gets in the area. If it makes it difficult to close his hand well around the bat, then yes, will be a problem. Not sure he's tested it yet but is expected to soon.

Stephania Bell
  (3:51 PM)

Zack: You're right. It was a deep gash - and so fortunate that it missed the tendons. Depends how tight the scar tissue gets in the area. If it makes it difficult to close his hand well around the bat, then yes, will be a problem. Not sure he's tested it yet but is expected to soon.

Stephania Bell
  (3:53 PM)

Fish: Yes, that is the worry with Ortiz. The injury he has been dealing with has chronicity to it, there are probably some substantial tissue changes. It remains a question of injury management vs "cure" and he may go months without any problem. Or he may find it flares up with an awkward step anytime now. Obviously the longer the symptoms are at bay, the better but no guarantees with him.

Dylan (Scranton, PA)

Who would you stash on the DL, Motte or Madson?

Stephania Bell
  (3:56 PM)

Dylan: Madson. Despite the setbacks, it looks like he is on track for a return in the not too distant future. Am more concerned about the long term outlook on Motte.

Mark Teixiera (Bronx)

Ok, so I was a little overzealous with the May 1st return date. What is a more realistic return date and how long until I am back to my usual self?

Stephania Bell
  (3:56 PM)

Dylan: Madson. Despite the setbacks, it looks like he is on track for a return in the not too distant future. Am more concerned about the long term outlook on Motte.

Stephania Bell
  (3:59 PM)

Well, it's always good to be optimistic. But apparently you're seeing that what we always said would be the biggest problem, is indeed proving to be the case. Swinging the bat hard is the biggest threat to re-tearing the sheath. Unfortunately, it's also what you need to do at the plate. The team is going to slow things down to avoid the chances of further tissue damage. I'm not convinced though that even if you do come back late in the month or early next month that you'll be truly out of the woods.

Stephania Bell
  (4:01 PM)

Time for me to close out the chat. Back to fantasy football rankings summit. Thanks to all for joining. You always give me good ideas for upcoming podcast/video/blogs...so if we don't get to someone here, be sure and check the other injury updates venues throughout the week. And above all, stay healthy!