2010 Spring Training Report: Lance Berkman Out for Two Weeks or More

Ray TannockSenior Analyst IMarch 12, 2010

ARLINGTON, TX - JUNE 18:  Lance Berkman #17 of the Houston Astros reacts after a fly out against the Texas Rangers in the 7th inning on June 18, 2009 at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

As if the advent of the 2010 MLB season wasn’t stressful enough, the Houston Astros were dealt with a major blow today.

Lance Berkman is scheduled to have surgery on his left knee Saturday, and while his projected recovery time is said to be only two weeks, a month or longer is more likely, leaving the Houston Astros season in dyer straights.

Berkman has long been an iconic anchor to a team that has fallen into mediocrity over the past couple of years: A symbol of fan faith and a reminder of what once was.

But now, the thought of Berkman missing Opening Day or more is just another shot on the chin for a team so desperately trying to rebuild in the face of adversity.

Berkman, 34, had one of his worst seasons last year on a team that was the oldest in the majors (31.6 avg age), so the injury is a bit indicative to the wear and tear the big man has had to endure; after all, carrying a team on your shoulders year after year isn’t exactly easy.

But to compound this matter is that the knee in question is the same knee Berkman has had problems with in the past, lending further favor that a physical breakdown is slowly developing.

For Houston, though, it will be a grand opportunity to test drive some younger talent while the big man is on the mend. In Berkman’s place—albeit speculative—there is a chance Astros’ fans could see Edwin Maysonet if Berkman does in fact wind up being out for longer than expected.

Maysonet is a good old-fashioned, well rounded player, scouted as being competent enough to play every single infield position for the Astros’ as well as having a pretty good bat.

Considering he is trying to secure a spot on the roster, this would be about as perfect of a situation as it can get for a player.

Even if Berkman is ready by Opening Day, the additional playing time for the farm kids is nothing to scoff at, and as the old saying goe,s this could wind up being a blessing in disguise for a team waiting on some prayers to be answered.

For fantasy Baseball implications please check out the additional coverage on Lance Berkman’s knee injury.

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