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Week 14 MLB Injury News, Fantasy Baseball Injury Updates - Chris Sale, Frankie Montas, Kevin Gausman, Tyler Stephenson

Chris Sale fantasy baseball rankings draft sleepers MLB injuries

The summer season is now in full swing and July 4th is in the rear view mirror. The next baseball season milestone coming up is the mid-summer classic – the All-Star game. Teams have passed the midpoint of their seasons and it is getting close to the time of saying that the results we see on the field from individual players are what we are going to get the rest of the season as well.  The MLB trade deadline is a month away as is the trade deadline in many fantasy leagues. A lot of players tend to be put on the IL the week before the All-Star game and a lot of players will be taken off the IL after the break. Knowing when injured players are coming back or how long they will be out is key to your success from now to the end of the season.

For new readers, my name is Reuven Guy and I am a practicing orthopedic/pain management Physician Assistant. I have been dealing with sports injuries for the past 16+ years and have a knowledge of orthopedic injuries and their recovery times based on my medical experience. I have also been playing fantasy baseball during that same period, which has helped me get an advantage in this aspect of fantasy baseball, which I hope to share with you.

Make sure to stay up-to-date on the latest MLB breaking news with our award-winning news desk and our free fantasy baseball mobile app with 24x7 push notification alerts!

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Injured Hitters for Fantasy Baseball

Fernando Tatis Jr. (SS, SD)- Wrist: Tatis continues to recover from wrist surgery following a fracture. This week, a slightly clearer timeline was given as to when he could return. Tatis "came out happy" from his last doctor appointment and is expected to be swinging a bat at full speed within the next week or two weeks. This may put him on a timeline to return end of July or the beginning of August, barring any setbacks. The Padres are also considering having Tatis play the outfield when he returns.

Jazz Chisholm Jr. (2B, MIA)- Back: Chisholm was placed on the IL with a right lower-back strain. The severity is not yet known. Chisholm is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment this weekend.  Jon Berti should continue to see an increase in playing time with Chisholm out.

Tyler Stephenson (C, CIN)- Thumb: Stephenson is on the IL while recovering from a thumb fracture. Stephenson is taking part in a rehab assignment and is expected to play in one or two more games before being activated. He should be activated by the beginning of next week at the latest.

Kyle Lewis (OF, SEA)- Concussion: Lewis is currently on the IL after experiencing concussion symptoms. Lewis recently began a rehab assignment and could be activated sometime next week. Manager Scott Servais said that Lewis will see a healthy dose of playing time in the outfield.

Chris Taylor (OF, LAD)- Foot: Taylor was placed on the IL with a left foot fracture. Taylor had an X-ray and then a CT scan which showed the fracture. Taylor was unsure how long he might be sidelined and this will be based on the type of fracture that he has. Trayce Thompson and  Jake Lamb should see more playing time with Taylor out.

Frank Schwindel (3B, CHC)- Back: Schwindel is currently on the IL dealing with low back pain and tightness. Schwindel has begun taking grounders and taking batting practice as well. He is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment this coming week and could be activated from the IL sometime next week. 

Enrique Hernandez (OF, BOS)- Hip: Hernandez is on the IL with a right hip strain. Hernandez was scheduled to begin a rehab assignment this weekend and could be activated on Monday.

Brandon Lowe (2B, TB)- Back: Lowe is currently on the IL with a lower back injury. Manager Kevin Cash said recently that Lowe has begun a rehab assignment this past week and is expected to return after the All-Star break. Lowe is currently on the 60-day IL and the earliest he could return is July 22.  Vidal Brujan has seen an increase in playing time with Lowe out.

Jake Burger (3B, CHW)- Hand: Burger was placed on the IL with a bone bruise on his right hand. The severity is not yet known. There is no timeline for his return. Burger began losing playing time once Yoan Moncada came off of the IL.

Yasmani Grandal (C, CHW)- Back: Grandal sustained a left hamstring injury while running and then he developed a back issue and is on the IL. Grandal has begun a rehab assignment, however, he said that he does not expect to be activated from the IL until after the All-Star break. Reese McGuire has been filling in for the White Sox.

Michael Brantley (OF, HOU)- Shoulder: Brantley was placed on the IL with right shoulder discomfort. The severity is not yet known. Manager Dusty Baker said this past week that he has not yet begun swinging a bat yet. Jake Meyers has seen an increase in playing time with Brantley out.

Ozzie Albies (2B, ATL)- Foot: Albies is on the IL following surgery due to a broken foot. Manager Brian Snitker said recently that Albies is still riding on a medical scooter as he recovers from surgery for a broken foot, but he comes in each day and does rehab and a strengthening program to keep the rest of his body ready once he can resume baseball activities. There is still no concrete timetable for his return.

Curt Casali (C, SF)- Oblique: Casali was placed on the IL with an oblique strain. Casali said he has a Grade 2 oblique strain. That means he will be out for about four to six weeks. This may open the door for Joey Bart to be recalled from the minors.

Mitch Haniger- (OF, SEA)- Ankle: Haniger is on the IL as he continues to recover from an ankle sprain. General manager Jerry Dipoto said this week that he hopes Haniger will be back in the lineup by the end of July. Haniger has not yet progressed to running at full speed, but he has been participating in other baseball activities recently. It's not yet clear when he will be able to begin a rehab assignment, but the team hopes that he will be back in action shortly after the All-Star break.

Pavin Smith (1B, ARI)- Wrist: Smith was placed on the minor league IL with a right wrist fracture. He was injured in his second game in the minors following his demotion. Smith has a non-displaced fracture and is also dealing with some ligament damage, and he's expected to be sidelined for at least six to eight weeks.

Evan Longoria (3B, SF)- Oblique: Longoria was placed on the IL with a strained left oblique. The severity is not yet known. Longoria does not have a clear timeline for his return, but he seems likely to be sidelined through the All-Star break. David Villar was called up to fill in and Wilmer Flores could play there as well.

Austin Meadows (OF, DET)- Achilles: Meadows was transferred from the COVID-19 IL to the regular IL due to strains in his left and right Achilles. Meadows has begun a rehab assignment and could be activated as early as this weekend.

Harrison Bader (OF, STL)- Foot: Bader was placed on the IL with plantar fasciitis of the right foot. The severity is not yet known. Bader has begun taking part in light baseball activities. He is not yet ready to begin a rehab assignment but beginning baseball activities is a step in the right direction. Barring any setbacks, he could return after the All-Star break.  Lars Nootbaar, Dylan Carlson, Conner Capel, and Brendan Donovan should see more time while Bader is out and until Tyler O'Neill gets activated from the IL.

Wil Myers (OF, SD)- Knee: Myers is on the IL with right knee inflammation. He has been able to avoid surgery. Myers has been running regularly and took batting practice last week. Padres manager Bob Melvin said the outfielder could begin a rehab assignment during the coming week. 


Injured Starting Pitchers for Fantasy Baseball

Jacob deGrom (SP, NYM)- Shoulder: deGrom was placed on the IL with a stress reaction in his right scapula. He will make his second rehab start this weekend. He will be going on regular rest. You can expect deGrom to throw around 40 pitches. He will then be further evaluated as he continues to bring up his pitch count. 

Chris Sale (SP, BOS)- Rib: Sale is on the IL with a stress fracture on the right side of his ribcage. Sale has completed his rehab assignments and is set to be activated from the IL on Tuesday.

Anthony DeSclafani (SP, SF)- Ankle: Desclafani was transferred to the 60-day IL after it was announced that he will have surgery on his ankle. He is out for the remainder of the season.

Kyle Hendricks (SP, CHC)- Shoulder: Hendricks was placed on the IL with a right shoulder strain. The severity is not yet known. He will be out at least through the All-Star break and is eligible to come off the IL when the Cubs open their second-half schedule on July 22. This will depend on how much progress he makes in his rehab and throwing program over the next two weeks. Marcus Stroman and Drew Smyly are close to returning from the IL for the Cubs to help their rotation. 

Kevin Gausman (SP, TOR)- Ankle: Gausman has been dealing with an ankle injury. He missed his start this week but he threw off of flat ground on Thursday and is scheduled for a bullpen session soon to see if he could pitch this weekend or if he will need an IL stint.

Andrew Heaney (SP, LAD)- Shoulder: Heaney is currently on the IL with left shoulder inflammation. He threw a bullpen session on Tuesday. He will need at least one more bullpen session before advancing to face hitters, which will be the final hurdle before beginning a rehab assignment. Given the timing required for those steps in his rehab program, Heaney should be expected to return after the All-Star break.

Jack Flaherty (SP, STL)- Shoulder: Flaherty was placed on the IL this week with a right shoulder strain. Flaherty didn't make his season debut until mid-June due to a shoulder injury that first appeared back in mid-March. He left his last start with shoulder stiffness. The severity is not yet known. he will not throw for at least the next two to three weeks.

Nathan Eovaldi (SP, BOS)- Back: Eovaldi is on the IL with lower back inflammation. He threw a live batting practice this week, topping out at 96 MPH. The Red Sox have not yet said if he will need a rehab assignment or if he will be activated sooner than that.

Garrett Whitlock (SP, BOS)- Hip: Whitlock is on the IL with right hip inflammation. He is scheduled to have a rehab assignment begin this weekend. It is not known if he will need one or two rehab games prior to activation. Manager Alex Cora has said that the Red Sox are considering using Whitlock out of the bullpen upon his return from the IL.

Tyler Mahle (SP, CIN)- Shoulder: Mahle was placed on the with a right shoulder strain. Reliever Ian Gibault took his roster spot. Mahle said this past Wednesday that his shoulder injury is “not concerning at all.” There is no timeline for his return yet

Lance McCullers Jr. (SP, HOU)- Forearm: McCullers has been on the IL with a forearm injury. He threw a bullpen session and took part in fielding drills. In his most recent bullpen, he threw 30-32 pitches in a live BP at around 91-93 mph. He threw six sliders and six curveballs all at around 82-84 mph. His next step in his recovery could be up-downs. “I would consider myself healthy,” he said. The Astros have not given a timeline for when he could begin a rehab assignment.

Frankie Montas (SP, OAK)- Shoulder: Montas is dealing with shoulder pain. He had an MRI and it showed inflammation but no structural damage. Montas received a cortisone shot for his shoulder, per A’s trainer Nick Paparesta. He will not make his next start in the rotation but there is no decision on whether he will need a stint on the IL He remains day to day.

Steven Matz (SP, STL)- Shoulder: Matz is on the IL with shoulder inflammation. He was scheduled to make the third start of his rehab assignment this past Thursday. Barring any setbacks, Matz could be activated next week.

Chris Archer (SP, MIN)- Hip: Archer was placed on the IL with left hip tightness. The severity is not yet known. Archer is eligible to be activated on the final day of the first half and manager Rocco Baldelli is hopeful to do so. Josh Winder will start in Archer's place and is the favorite to remain in the rotation until Archer returns.

Edward Cabrera (SP, MIA)- Elbow: Cabrera is on the IL with right elbow tendonitis. He threw a 25-pitch bullpen session this past Monday. His return has been delayed by a personal matter. He will now ramp up to a rehab assignment and looks to be on target to return after the All-Star break. 

Ranger Suarez (SP, PHI)- Back: Suarez was placed on the IL with a low back spasm, retroactive to June 30. The severity is not yet known. The Phillies have not yet announced their updated rotation plans, but Cristopher Sanchez and Kent Emanuel are candidates to serve as starters.

Yusei Kikuchi- (SP, TOR)- Neck- Kikuchi was placed on the IL with a neck strain. There was no indication during his last start that he was dealing with an injury during the game. He will be out at least through the All-Star break. Thomas Hatch or Max Castillo could fill in for the Blue Jays.

Michael Lorenzen- (SP, LAA)- Shoulder: Lorenzen was placed on the IL with a right shoulder strain, retroactive to July 4. It is unclear as to how long Lorenzen has been dealing with the injury. He is scheduled to undergo an MRI, the results of which should provide an indication of whether or not he will spend more than the 15-day minimum on the shelf.


Injured Relief Pitchers for Fantasy Baseball

Kenley Jansen (RP, ATL)- Heart: Jansen is on the IL with an irregular heartbeat. Jansen was first diagnosed with an irregular heartbeat in 2011 and missed time that season, as well as during the 2012 and 2018 seasons after experiencing recurrences of the cardiac issue. The last time Jansen was on the IL for this issue (2018) he only missed the minimum amount of time on the IL. Jansen has been reportedly doing full workouts and he expects that he will be activated from the IL on July 12th. A.J. Minter and Will Smith have been filling for Jansen since he has been out.

Anthony Bender (RP, MIA)- Back: Bender has been on the IL with a back injury. Bender threw a 20-pitch bullpen session but has appeared to have had a setback as he is back to playing catch from 60 feet. There is no timeline for his return.

Dany Jimenez (RP, OAK)- Shoulder: Jimenez was placed on the IL with a strained right shoulder. Jimenez has progressed to throwing out to 90 feet this week, but he still needs to be stretched out over the next 7-10 days.  There is still no clear timetable for his return. Lou Trivino has been closing for the Athletics with Jimenez out.

Brusdar Graterol (RP, LAD)- Side: Graterol was diagnosed with right side soreness after exiting Thursday's game. He will undergo some testing to help determine whether a trip to the IL is necessary.

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