Fantasy Update: Injured Stars and Sleepers

The MLB’s disabled list continues to sabotage even the best of fantasy collaborations as this 2011 season chugs on. With violent injuries to Arizona’s Stephen Drew (Season – broken ankle) and the Crew’s Carlos Gomez (15 day DL broken collarbone) last night, you can add two more to the list of fallen players  topped off by its’ frequent client Grady Sizemore (15 day DL knee contusion). The mid-level player DL +3’d this  past week with Peter Bourjos, Miguel Tejada, and Pat Burrell also joining the injured.

Consequently, the fluctuating DL situation has finally hit a high note for some with the timely returns of Jose Reyes, Ryan Braun, and Shane Victorino. Reyes had been out with a Grade 1 left hamstring strain, which originally was expected to keep him out beyond the 15-day minimum, but as it turned out, he came back on the first eligible day. Braun, who has been in and out of the lineup with a calf strain, was back in Tuesday and went 1-for-3 with a two-run home run, but only stayed in the game for five innings. Apparently this was planned as a means of easing him back into action. The Flyin Hawaiian was also activated Tuesday after suffering from a strain in his thumb that kept him out of the lineup.

Whether the empty spot on your roster is a result of A Rod’s bum knee or Drew’s foot that broke off at home plate, these 5 positional waiver sleepers have definite upside and can nullify the loss of a starter or utility man in deeper leagues.

 

1. Nyjer Morgan OF Milwaukee Brewers (available in 74% of ESPN and 82% Yahoo)

62/186 , 31 runs , 3  HR , 22 RBI , 6 SB   .333 AVG

Nyjer Morgan extended his hitting streak to ten games on Wednesday.  Morgan is batting .368 (14-for-38) over that stretch. Scrappy little outfielder.

2. Alex Presley OF Pittsburgh Pirates (available in 74% of ESPN leagues and 89% of Yahoo leagues.)

27/77 , 12 runs , 1 HR , 9 RBI , 4 SB .351 AVG

Presley continues to cement his status as an everyday outfielder for the Pirates, a little more than a month into his major-league career. Even when Jose Tabata returns it looks like the rookie will stay on the field.

3. Jemile Weeks 2B Oakland Athletics (available in 67% of ESPN and 80% of Yahoo leagues)

44/143 , 17 runs , 11 RBI , 10 SB , .308 AVG

Weeks is nicked up himself but will continue to hit leadoff in a slacking Athletics lineup. He possesses true speed so his numbers should continue to be respectable but lacking the power of his brother Ricky.

4Edwin Encarnacion 1B, 3B, OF Toronto Blue Jays (avaiable in 66% of ESPN leagues and 90% of Yahoo leagues

73/269 , 36 runs , 7 HR , 24 RBI , 4 SB , .271 AVG

Encarnacion clocked three hits, including his seventh homer, stole two bases and scored four runs on Wednesday. Encarnacion entered the game hitting .452 (14-for-31) in his previous eight games as he continues to see regular playing time after the Jays released Juan Rivera. He’s known to be the epitome of hot and cold so keep an eye on him.

5. Darwin Barney 2B, SS Chicago Cubs (available in 47% of ESPN leagues and 66% of Yahoo leagues)

94/314 , 41 runs , 1 HR , 33 RBI , 4 SB , .299 AVG

Hitting 8th, ahead of the pitcher, will continue to cost Barney runs and SB but it doesnt mean he won’t produce for the Cubs who rely on Barney to compliment shortstop  Starlin Castro.


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