It's crunch time in the fantasy baseball season. The trade deadlines are right around the corner and evaluating injuries becomes ever more important. Let's take a look at some of the recent news.
Carlos Santana was part of a brutal collision at the plate with Red Sox outfielder Ryan Kalish. What initially looked like an injury that would be considered "major" has been updated this morning with some good news. We'll have to wait for more information to come out, but it would seam that Santana's season is essentially over. The impact now turns to his keeper value for 2011. If the news continues to be good -- or just not as bad as it looked like it would be -- Santana could still rank as a top five catcher next season.
Martin Prado was sent to the DL with a finger injury, but is not expected to miss more than just the minimum. In the meantime, you can try and turn to possible free agents such as Yunel Escobar, Alberto Callaspo, Asdrubal Cabrera, Starlin Castro and J.J. Hardy - All of which are under 45 percent owned in Yahoo! leagues.
Ryan Howard is still being bothered by a swollen ankle and could be headed to the DL. At this point it's nothing more than swelling and discomfort, but that isn't exactly good news for a man of Howard's size and weight. There is no DH spot to use in Philly, so he'll have to be 100 percent and able to play defense before his return. The other issue here is the chance that Howard re-injures his ankle as it's an injury that can easily reoccur unless completely healed. Hopefully the Phillies can fight back the urge to get Howard back on the field before he he's ready. In the meantime, you can look to the following for help at 1B: Luke Scott, Adam LaRoche, Matt LaPorta, Ike Davis and Casey Kotchman.
Kevin Youkilis left last night's game with a bruised thumb. While the injury does not appear to be serious enough for Youk to miss an extended period of time, one can't help but wonder how this will affect his offensive game. We have all seen how a thumb injury affected Aramis Ramirez's production this season. Even though Ramirez was able to play through the pain, it clearly affected his approach at the plate and his power output.
Carlos Silva, who is known to drink coffee and energy drinks before starts, left Monday's game due to an accelerated heart beat. He was taken to the hospital for further evaluation. As someone who has had a similar incident in the past, I can attest to the scariness of this situation. They say that too much of anything is a bad thing, but you can put an exclamation mark on that statement when talking about caffeine, sugar and alcohol. If Silva's problem is what I think it is, he should be fine in the long run, but he will also have to adjust to performing without the use of caffeine or the high amounts of sugar found in energy drinks. I for one, quit drinking coffee all together and have not touched an energy drink in years.