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Throughout the fantasy season, you will have to work your way through a handful of DL stints. Unfortunately, losing your first- or second-round pick could be the beginning of the end, but there is always hope. Starting a guy on the DL is deadly, especially in leagues where you update the roster weekly. Staying on top of things, and keeping track of injuries, can and will keep you on top of the leaderboard.
Here is a list of some players on the DL, and players who have recently been activated from the DL, and their respective fantasy impact:
Travis Hafner (Cle, 1B) - right shoulder strain - Hafner went 2-for-3 in his first rehab assignment yesterday. Hopefully, Hafner will be a viable option come late August. He could prove vital for your team in the playoffs.
Victor Martinez (Cle, C) - right elbow surgery and vaginal itchiness - Martinez was a huge bust this year, and is currently rehabbing in Buffalo. He hit a homer on Sunday and is scheduled to catch six innings today. Unfortunately, he will split time with Kelly Shoppach, so Martinez’s return won’t be a huge help.
Adam Jones (Bal, OF) - sore left foot - Jones broke his foot a while back, but may be able to resume baseball activities by the end of the week.
Bartolo Colon (Bos, SP) - back stiffness - Colon should be back for September, basically after the fantasy season is over. Unless you have a very weak rotation and need Colon in the finals, it is safe to drop him at this point.
Mike Lowell (Bos, 3B) - right oblique strain - Lowell should rejoin the team when they face the Yankees or Blue Jays, but won’t be ready to be activated off the DL just yet. He still feels tenderness in his oblique, and won’t be startable for a bit longer.
Jose Contreras (CWS, SP) - ruptured achilles tendon - Out for at least nine months. Drop Contreras if you haven’t done so already.
Joe Crede (CWS, 3B) - back lumbar inflammation - Yahoo! Sports writes: “...when asked about an updated timetable, manager Ozzie Guillen simply shook his head. ”I forgot about Joe Crede,” Guillen said. ”Wow, it has been so long. Is Crede still around? Right now, I don’t expect to have him anytime soon. We have to be prepared for that. I think (Juan) Uribe has been doing a good job playing third base. We just are focused on what we have here.” Uribe has made that easier, entering Monday hitting .343 in his last 35 at-bats.” Ha, you gotta love Guillen…he is crazy, but you heard the man. Drop Crede also.
Joba Chamberlain (NYY, SP/RP) - rotator cuff tendinitis - Joba just started throwing again, but it's difficult to judge when he will make his next start. The Yankees, who don’t look like they will make the playoffs, aren’t going to rush Joba back, but he should return somewhat soon.
Chein Ming Wang (NYY, SP) - torn tendon and sprained right foot - Wang is still on crutches, and it doesn’t look like he is any use to fantasy teams. Drop this professional baserunner.
Erik Bedard (Sea, SP) - left shoulder stiffness - Bedard was slightly disappointing before the injury, but many fantasy managers have had him stashed away on the bench for weeks (including myself). I wouldn’t rush to start him, but he may return sometime after Seattle returns home on Aug. 21. Bedard might be a solid start in the playoffs, but monitor how he feels/looks when he returns.
Carl Crawford (TB, OF) - sublaxation right middle finger tendon - Crawford is done for the rest of this fantasy season. Drop him in all leagues except keepers.
Evan Longoria (TB, 3B) - fractured right wrist - Longoria has been out since Aug. 7, but is hoping to return early September. That is playoff time, baby. He says he is OK to play now, but is afraid of injuring himself worse. You can interpret that a few different ways, but I think he will be OK to start once he is activated.
Ian Kinsler (Tex, 2B) - sports hernia - OUCH! Kinsler is probably done for the season. You can’t be too mad at the guy, since he probably is a major reason your team is doing well this season. Don’t forget the name for next year.
David Murphy (Tex, OF) - sprained right knee - Murphy is another guy who is supposed to return in early September. It's another tough call, but if he is 100 percent healthy it would be hard not to start a guy hitting in the middle of the Texas lineup. On the other hand, Kinsler is out now, so you may want to see if you have safer options.
CJ Wilson (Tex, RP) - left elbow bone spurs - Done for the season, so drop this dude ASAP.
J.D. Drew (Bos, OF) - lower back stiffness - Drew left Sunday’s game early, but the organization seems to think they took him out before he really hurt himself. Drew has had back issues in the past, so you may want to keep your eye on his status.
Hideki Matsui (NYY, OF) - swollen left knee - Godzilla is supposed to DH tonight, and hasn’t suffered any setbacks in his rehab starts. Matsui should be fine, but he is an older guy, so I would be cautious.
Troy Percival (TB, RP) - right knee cartilage damage - Percival won’t undergo surgery, and may return in a few weeks. He will be pitching through pain, so it's difficult to tell you what to do with him. If you don’t have any other closers, then hold on to him and roll the dice.
Welcome Back To Work—Recently Activated From The DL/Back In The Lineup
Jacoby Ellsbury (Bos, OF) - bruised tailbone - Ellsbury returned to action on Saturday after bruising his tailbone last Monday. He hasn’t gotten any solid hits in since returning, but he should pop back soon.
Derek Jeter (NYY, SS) - bruised left foot - Jeter returned to the lineup on Friday after fouling a ball off of his foot Tuesday. Jeter missed a few games, but he is healthy as can be, so don’t hesitate to start him.