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

Stephania Bell
  (3:09 PM)

Hello everyone. Sorry for the delay. Let's get right to the questions.

mike (boston)

Cueto update please? I haven't been able to find any information

Stephania Bell
  (3:13 PM)

Mike: Several folks asking that same question. There really hasn't been much to report. The Reds deliberately taking it much slower this time around, given this is the 3rd episode. Have not heard yet whether he's resumed throwing but it wasn't supposed to happen until about now anyway. Have thought it would be late August before he returns and keep in mind, the Reds acknowledge it is likely to be a problem (or a potential one) until the offseason.

Albert Bell (No relation to Stephania)

SB! Do you think Beachy is still hurt? Or was last night just a sign of needing adjustment?

Stephania Bell
  (3:14 PM)

Albert (not my relative): No. Just a reflection of first time back. He was not spectacular in his rehab starts, so this couldn't have come as a huge surprise to the Braves. But it's about getting him back and getting starts under his belt. Expect inconsistency early on.

Dustin (Tega Cay, SC)

Hey Stephania,Any word on the Percy Harvin injury yet?

Stephania Bell
  (3:16 PM)

Dustin: No, not yet. He was supposed to be seeing Dr. Kelly today and he may have had to undergo some additional tests, etc so I wouldn't be surprised if we didn't hear anything until later this evening or tomorrow.

Matt (Steinway)

I must say, I'm quite surprised Jon Niese is so close to returning. Any medical insights as to why his recovery has been so quick? Given their history, I trust you a lot more than I trust the Mets team doctors.

Stephania Bell
  (3:19 PM)

Matt: Well, I don't know about that but I will say that often when we hear about these guys suffering cuff tears, they probably had them -or were at least developing them- for a while. It's expected with pitchers. So when they have symptoms, often the rest from throwing to let everything settle, then gradually resume a throwing program, is enough to let them keep going. And he could continue for months/years without another episode. Or he could pitch for a short time then have it act up. Very, very hard to predict.

chad k (ashland,PA)

stephania, do you think jason grilli will be back by the end of the season and if not is he safe to drop in fantasy leagues?

Stephania Bell
  (3:20 PM)

Chad: Well, he thinks he'll be back. I can't say anyone knows for sure but he's had a history with his elbow, has already had TJ surgery, etc, so I think he knows himself pretty well. The 4-6 week estimate was probably a reasonable one. Barring a setback I'd look for him then but...obviously not a guarantee. If you have the space to stash him, I would.

EJ (Charlotte)

A.Rameriz seems injured worse than 1st reported. His status now and worth holding onto ROS?

Stephania Bell
  (3:23 PM)

EJ: I said in the spring that I thought this would be a potential season-long problem because he had instability symptoms in his knee. It also now seems that each aggravation this year has made the symptoms worse. He says he doesn't want to come back until he's close to 100% but I'm not sure he's going to get to that point until the offseason. And every slide or quick movement is a potential cause for a flare-up. I'd be looking elsewhere, very uncertain situation.

Logan (Melbourne,Fla.)

How's R.Halladay's rehab going and do you think we'll see him this year?

Stephania Bell
  (3:25 PM)

Logan: His rehab has been going great by all counts. He's thrown a few bullpens, all of which have gone well and he says he feels much better than last year. He was trying to make it back in August. Suppose that's possible but they will restrain him somewhat after surgery. I think he will pitch in September, maybe late August if things keep going this well.

Steve (PA)

How's RGIII handling the knee brace? He's been saying that he's running fine, but I'm wondering if the brace is slowing him down a bit.

Stephania Bell
  (3:28 PM)

Steve: He'd better be handling it b/c he won't have an alternative. Not this year. I think it's important for him to get used to it in practice so that it's not an issue throughout the season. Maybe it slows him a bit but I don't think it will be a huge difference maker. And one way or the other he's wearing it.

Josh (Chicago)

Any update on Chris Carpenter? Is he even worth a IR spot for this season?

Stephania Bell
  (3:30 PM)

Josh: I would not hold a spot for him. His attempt to return has been admirable but the setbacks are significant, esp the latest with numbness in his hand. Even if he does make it back (and it's looking less likely), he'll be at risk.

Jake (Dallas)

By what week in the regular season do you expect gronkowski to come back for the pats? Thanks

Stephania Bell
  (3:33 PM)

Jake: If we were just talking his back, I'd say by Week 6 but prob around Week 3-4 (assuming they carried him on active roster), if he didn't make the start. But with the forearm, that is the big X factor. The Patriots are not going to disclose the progress of the bone healing but if we don't know that his bone has healed to the point of being able to absorb contact, we don't know if he might miss a couple months.As long as the back is the issue, we won't hear about the forearm. Makes it tough before we get right up close to the start of the season.

Jon (Jacksonville)

Hey Starphania! Encouraged by CarGo's 5 hits last night? None of them were hit that hard, think he's swinging a little easier with that finger injury?

Stephania Bell
  (3:35 PM)

Jon: I was actually pretty surprised, given that a day earlier they're tlaking about will he or won't he go on DL. The finger is not perfect but it sounds like the thought is that a DL stint won't necessarily change it. So they tape it heavily, try to control inflammation and when he feels well enough he plays. But as we saw before he missed the last string of games, one bad swing and then there's a setback. I think as long as he shows he can come out and deliver like last night, he's worth holding onto but you have to monitor him b/c it may act up and require a few days off again.

Chris (Twin Cities)

Hey Stephania, I was curious if you would go ahead and drop Pujols at this point. Only have one DL spot that is being occupied by Kemp so Albert is wasting a spot in my active roster each day. Ps. You are not a cone in my book! Keep up the great work!

Stephania Bell
  (3:36 PM)

Thanks Chris: I would not hang onto Pujols. (Can you believe we're saying that?) He could come back in a few weeks but I highly doubt he'll be healthy again this season.

John (Austin)

When do you think Cobb rejoins the rotation?

Stephania Bell
  (3:38 PM)

John: The last holdup was a blister. He's set for a sim game today and then a rehab start this weekend. Probably needs a few so looking at probably 2-3 weeks if all goes well.

Matt (Florida)

Any news on Choo's ankle for tonight's game?

Stephania Bell
  (3:39 PM)

Matt: Not yet. Might hold him out another day but have not heard officially.

Kevin (K.C.)

Hey Stephania, have you heard when Jason Vargas might return from his blood clot?

Stephania Bell
  (3:41 PM)

Kevin: Nothing set in stone yet but I'm impressed with how well he's been doing. Bullpens are where he is right now but he could potentially throw a sim game soon. Then rehab assignment. Sounds like a few weeks away (obviously without a setback), but he's doing well.

Jason (hiller pa)

Any updates on Brian Dozier?

Stephania Bell
  (3:42 PM)

Jason: The last I heard was that he was dealing with low back stiffness, recently aggravated swinging a bat. Sounds like he was hoping to play Tuesday but I've not heard officially.

Matt (Steinway)

Piggybacking on your Niese answer, if you were in charge of a team's medical staff, would you prefer that the player gets surgery immediately and have a defined recovery course, rather than the uncertainty of a possibly-healed injury? Could be years or could be days sounds very, very uncertain to me. Why not take the surgery now?

Stephania Bell
  (3:45 PM)

Matt: Get asked this question a lot but it's important to remember that any time you open the body up with surgery, it comes with risk. Some risks are more than others. And some outcomes are less predictable. Shoulder surgery is among the most uncertain when it comes to outcome. Even though there is a guidleine for what the rehab will be and approx how long, it varies greatly between people and the return to play rate is far lower for shoulder surgeries, especially rotator cuff surgery, than for other things. So no, would not push surgery immediately. Think of it as an option for when conservative treatment fails.

Jim (Minneapolis)

Why is it that Dennis Pitta's injury is so severe? Is a dislocated him really that bad?

Stephania Bell
  (3:48 PM)

Jim: Assume you mean "hip." :)Yes. It can be. This is what ended Bo Jackson's career. It all hinges upon just how much trauma there was in the joint. He had surgery that night. THat tells you there was something going on that gave them enough concern he couldn't wait, perhaps a fracture in the joint. The hope is that he didn't suffer any vascular (blood vessel) damage and he heals well. But yes, it's a tough joint to dislocate so when you do, it's often pretty traumatic and in the worst cases can be career threatening.

Kelvin (Florida)

Kemp's status rest of the way in your eyes? Will he finish out season healthy? Hold or drop?

Stephania Bell
  (3:51 PM)

Kelvin: I'm holding but at this point, why, I'm not sure. He has been a rash of consecutive injuries this year but I understand them being conservative with his care. In the year he comes off shoulder surgery you don't want him compensating, so you ensure as best you can that he's recovered from everything before putting him back out there. I'm as worried about him getting his swing back (this season) as I am about anything. Just have this hunch that he has a late surge.

Rachel (Hattiesburg)

Ben Revere. Will he provide any fantasy help near the end of the season? Thanks.

Stephania Bell
  (3:52 PM)

Rachel: Theoretically he could be back but foot surgeries aren't easy to just bounce back quickly from. If you have an extra space and want to take a chance? Sure. But I wouldn't count on him.

Matt (FL)

Would you rather stash Willingham or Voglesong on the DL for the playoff push?

Stephania Bell
  (3:54 PM)

Matt: I guess it depends what exactly you need but I'd go Vogelsong. Feel like Vogelsong returns sooner and less chance of a setback.

john ( Indy)

Any update on Ahmad Bradshaw? It is a little concerning that he got passed over by so many teams, is still in a walking boot, and says he will not practice or play in a preaseason game.

Stephania Bell
  (3:57 PM)

John: I'm not so worried about him. He actually had a more aggressive surgery to address the issue with his foot that has been so problematic for years. Great rehab folks in Indy who will bring him back in a very gradual manner. He has always been one of the toughest around and willing to play through pain.He does not need preseason play and frankly, I'm glad he's not playing then. He'll get nicked up but he'll play through most things.

john (mass)

Afternoon Stephania! what do u expect from Morse comin' off the DL today? good right off the bat? thx

Stephania Bell
  (3:58 PM)

John: I think so. He's had a good rest/recovery for his quad and I don't see a reason to wait on him.

Ben (Atlanta)

Jedd Gyorko has been dreadful since coming back from his groin injuries. Is this (mostly) a timing issue with "getting his swing back"? Or lingering effects of the injury?

Stephania Bell
  (4:00 PM)

Ben: Good question. Sometimes hard to tell from a distance. Remember when this injury first happened the Padres thought it would be a few days? Then it was DL. Then a setback, supposedly minor but apparently slightly more serious given the extended time off. Could be a combination of being rusty and the lingering effects, especially if he doesn't fully trust that leg yet. Just hard to know.

Dan (Atlanta)

B.Wilson now with dodgers. How do you think he will perform ROS? His injury become a problem?

Stephania Bell
  (4:02 PM)

Dan: I know. So strange to see him with L.A. Look, this is his second TJ surgery and the report card on those is not great, although it is better for relievers. Not sure he can be who he once was but he may be able to provide them some bullpen help and be decent. It's actually good for him to come back to a shortened window and if he does well, then has the offseason to prep for a season's worth of work.

Steven (Chicago)

I've read everything from later this season, to 12 months for Pujols. How much value do you think he has in a dynasty league in 2014?

Stephania Bell
  (4:04 PM)

Steven: I think we're seeing the beginning of a decline. Overall wear and tear of not only playing for so many years but for playing so much for so long. Even if the foot is better into next year, I think you see more sprains and strains, less playing time.

Stephania Bell
  (4:07 PM)

Time for me to go. Thanks for coming everyone. Great conversation as usual. And thanks for planting some ideas in my head for podcast - which I'll be joining tomorrow - FOOTBALL and BASEBALL.Hit me up on Twitter with other questions for the podcast. Stephania_ESPNHave a great afternoon!!