Injury Report: A day late, a Yankee short

Elsa

It's been a weird year for Yankee haters. Should we feel sympathy, or grumble about their continued success?

Yesterday was Memorial Day, which meant sleeping in, nice breakfast, IMAX 3D of the new Star Trek, a cookout at my sister's. What it did not mean was remembering to post this injury update to the site before doing all those nifty little things. Sorry about that. I am shame-faced.

On the other side of the coin, being late gives me a chance to say that the Indians also lost Chris Perez to the 15-day DL with shoulder soreness. While he's out, Vinnie Pestano will get the save opportunities, and he's got to be one of the top adds over the next few days. I wouldn't be blown away if he does well out of the gate and keeps the job upon Perez's return, either.

I can't decide if this season has made me hate the Yankees more or less. I mean, on the one side of the coin, they have suffered so many injuries and misfortune that you kind of feel obligated to root for them, like the movie schlub who loses his job, girlfriend, and pet monkey, only to rise again and triumph. On the other, they have triumphed, dang it. So far, at least.

Even with Joba Chamberlain, Derek Jeter, Andy Pettitte, Michael Pineda, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, and Kevin Youkilis all on the DL for part or all of the season, the Travis Hafner/Vernon Wells/Lyle Overbay Yankees have a winning percentage of a 99-win team. That's ridiculous.

And then, only a few days after getting Curtis Granderson back from his injury suffered with a spring-training hit-by-pitch, the Yankees lost Curtis Granderson to an in-season hit-by-pitch. That seems like a bad sequel. I still don't know what to think about the Yankees.

That was my baseball therapy session, I guess. As far as fantasy advice, you're pretty much stuck holding on to Granderson through his four(-ish?)-week absence, as a healthy Granderson is still an elite being, if it ever exists. The injury really means that those of you with Vernon Wells, Travis Hafner and/or Ichiro Suzuki will still get basically full-time at bats out of those guys for a few more weeks, until Granderson's return.

The most significant non-Granderson injury for fantasy players last week was probably Jim Henderson's, and if you had said a couple months ago that a Jim Henderson injury in May would somehow be significant, I'd probably have wondered why you were forecasting May injuries in March. But also, I'd have been surprised. Henderson has been strong as the Brewers' closer since taking over for John Axford. While he's out with his hamstring injury, it sounds like Francisco Rodriguez will get the job, which...do you feel lucky? I don't feel lucky. But if you do feel lucky, and are desperate, sure go for it. I'm not your boss.

The Red Sox lost a couple guys to the DL last week as well, in Will Middlebrooks and Shane Victorino. Two things: one, neither guy is expected out much beyond the minimum time frame, so there's that. But two, if you have lost either guy...drop him. Particularly Middlebrooks, who ranks 18th out of 21 qualified third basemen so far this year in wOBA, and at this point simply can't do the job. He's striking out 29.2% of the time while walking only 3.8%. If you even owned him until the injury, you were making a mistake. Let the injury be your chance to rectify. As for Victorino, he's been...adequate, at best so far, and I don't think you can expect much more than that from here on. You can replace his production on the waiver. Do it.

As for injuries you can't replace quite so well, the Phillies also lost a couple guys to the DL this week. Carlos Ruiz, out with a hamstring injury, has struggled so far in only a few games, while injured-oblique Chase Utley has been strong through far more. Both games are worth keeping, but not worth much more. Ruiz is a mid-level catcher, and you simply can't trust Utley to be healthy long-term. Keep them if you can, sure, but don't kill yourself to do so.

Oh, this was fun - last week, I wrote about Jaime Garcia that "there are no indications of a long-term absence," which was a super-smart sentence right up until it was announced that Garcia was out for the year for shoulder surgery. Feel free to drop, and I feel dumb.

As the Cardinals continue to lose pitchers, an interesting development could be the possible return of Chris Carpenter. Carpenter, who we all thought would be out for the year, has been throwing again, and there were rumors he could be back next month. It came out Saturday that he felt soreness in his throwing session, so the plan of him facing live batters was pushed back, but still, he might be worth a speculative add in the next few weeks.

The Angels are expected Jered Weaver back Tuesday or Wednesday for his return. He's still Jered Weaver, so for those of you who have missed him, he's back. You can smile.

But you cannot smile about Ryan Madson right now, as he has suffered yet another setback in his attempt to return from Tommy John surgery. They're still projecting his return before too long, but at this point I have no faith in getting much of anything from Madson.

Follow me on Twitter @danieltkelley

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