D.J. Short

Baseball Daily Dose

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Careful With Carl

Friday, April 27, 2012


Carl Crawford's quest for redemption will have to wait a while, as the Red Sox announced Thursday evening that the high-priced outfielder was diagnosed with a sprained ulnar collateral ligament in his left elbow.

The team said that a "conservative treatment protocol was recommended," so Crawford will try the rehab route as opposed to something like Tommy John surgery. However, he was given a platelet rich plasma (PRP) injection and will cease baseball activities indefinitely.

Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe suggested early Thursday evening that Crawford will miss three months, but a team source told Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald that they expect him back by the All-Star break. A return in June hasn't been ruled out, either, but we're probably looking at something around two months if all goes well.

The Red Sox are already missing Jacoby Ellsbury until at least June due to a subluxed right shoulder, so Cody Ross, Ryan Sweeney and the newly-acquired Marlon Byrd will continue to get most of the playing time in Boston's outfield. All three are relevant in deeper mixed formats at the moment.

Zimmerman Still In Limbo

The Nationals haven't placed Ryan Zimmerman on the disabled list yet, but his return doesn't exactly appear imminent.

Tim Powers of MLB.com reports that Zimmerman attempted to take some swings Thursday, but felt the same pain in the AC joint of his right shoulder. He's now expected to visit a doctor in Los Angeles on Friday, likely to receive another cortisone shot.

If Zimmerman is given the shot, the Nationals would give him a couple days of rest to see how the shoulder responds, so the best-case scenario is that he misses the rest of the weekend and comes back early next week. However, if the shoulder fails to respond to treatment, he could be headed for a stint on the disabled list backdated to April 21.

Chad Tracy filled in at third base in Thursday's loss to the Padres, but Mark DeRosa and Steve Lombardozzi should also see some playing time while Zimmerman is out. As I wrote in Waiver Wired on Thursday, Lombardozzi is the most interesting of the bunch from a fantasy perspective.

Humber Not So Perfect

After delivering a perfect game against the Mariners on Saturday, Humber was handed the worst beating of his major league career Thursday against the Red Sox. Baseball sure works in mysterious ways, huh?

Humber allowed a career-high nine runs on eight hits (including three home runs) and three walks over over five innings as part of a 10-3 loss. The major damage came courtesy of a grand slam by Kevin Youkilis and a pair of homers by Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The nine earned runs set a new record for runs allowed by a pitcher in their first start following a perfect game, topping the eight given up by Catfish Hunter in 1968.

It's not unusual to see an ownership spike in fantasy leagues after someone throws a no-hitter or a perfect game, but it's important to remember that there is some degree of luck involved with the eventual outcome. As such, it's generally a bad idea to make decisions based one exceptionally good start or one exceptionally bad start. There's little doubt that Humber can be a useful pitcher for the White Sox and in AL-only formats, but calling him mixed league material was always a bit of a stretch. Hopefully you sold high or didn't buy at all.

NL Quick Hits: Mike Pelfrey will visit Dr. James Andrews on Friday and is expected to undergo Tommy John surgery … Heath Bell blew his third save of the season Thursday by allowing two runs on four walks and one hit in a loss to the Mets … Sean Marshall blew his first save of the season Thursday against the Giants by giving up a go-ahead three-run homer to Angel PaganKirk Nieuwenhuis went 3-for-5 with a walk off RBI single in Thursday's win over the Marlins and is now batting .333 (22-for-60) over his first 18 games in the majors … Allen Craig (knee) went 2-for-5 as the DH on Thursday in his first rehab game with Triple-A Memphis and remains on track to join the Cardinals at some point next week … Edwin Jackson tossed 6 2/3 shutout innings Thursday night against the Padres, but was handed a tough luck no-decision … Freddy Sanchez had another setback while rehabbing his surgically-repaired shoulder in the minors …  Nick Masset remains sidelined indefinitely after an MRI showed that the strain in the capsule muscle of his right shoulder is not fully healed … The Dodgers are expected to promote prospect right-hander Nathan Eovaldi from Double-A Chattanooga on Friday … Chris Schwinden will take Mike Pelfrey's place in the starting rotation Friday against the Rockies, but he can be ignored in fantasy leagues … John Lannan has a 6.53 ERA over his first four starts with Triple-A Syracuse …

AL Quick Hits: Albert Pujols singled Thursday to break an 0-for-21 hitless streak … Shin-Soo Choo missed his second straight game Thursday due to left hamstring soreness … Danny Duffy will be skipped in the rotation this week due to left elbow tightness, but it's not considered serious … Jordan Walden blew his first save of the season Thursday against the Rays by giving up a two-run walk off homer to Brandon Allen … The Tigers released Brandon Inge on Thursday and will call up Brad Eldred to replace him on the active roster … Brian Matusz had his best start of the season Thursday against the Blue Jays, allowing two unearned runs over six innings while striking out three and walking a pair … Adam Jones hit his sixth homer of the season in a win over the Blue Jays ... Cody Ross was held out of Thursday's lineup to rest a sore left knee, but should return Friday … Dustin McGowan has been shut down for at least the next two weeks due to right shoulder inflammation … Nolan Reimold (neck) singled in his return to the lineup Thursday … Zach Britton (shoulder) is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Friday for the first time since receiving platelet rich plasma (PRP) treatment … Jesse Crain (oblique) threw 20 pitches in a bullpen session Thursday, but is likely to miss a few more days … Orioles' right-hander Luis Ayala notched a save in Thursday's win over the Blue Jays, but closer Jim Johnson (flu) could be released from the hospital Friday morning …The Red Sox are expected to add left-hander Rich Hill (elbow) to their bullpen this weekend … Robert Andino is expected to return from the paternity leave list Friday ... Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that minor league outfielder Michael Taylor has been summoned from Triple-A Sacramento to join the team in Baltimore. He could take Coco Crisp's spot on the roster if he continues to have difficulties with an inner-ear infection …



D.J. Short is a Rotoworld baseball editor and contributes to NBCSports.com's Hardball Talk blog. You can also find him on Twitter.
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