Injury Update: Opening Day

By Antonio D’Arcangelis

In FanDuel’s daily format, it’s crucial you’re in the loop on injuries around the league. I’ve selected a bunch of big name fantasy components with injuries that may or may not keep them out of their opening day matchups. These are all Top 200, FanDuel-relevant guys, with the possible exception of Ian Stewart, who’s definitely got the potential. Again – this is not a comprehensive review, but its aim is providing a heads-up on some of the guys you may already have plugged into your lineups for today’s $35K MLB Salary Cap games and tomorrow’s $25K One-Day MLB Grand Slam contest. I won’t waste your time with poor schlubs like Chase Utley, Zach Greinke and Mat Latos. If they’re already on the DL (as of Wednesday night), they’re probably not in here. Let’s get crack-a-lackin…before the roster deadlines happen.

Stephen Drew, ARI – It doesn’t look good for Drew starting tomorrow, and the culprit is a lingering lower abdominal strain – although the injury is not too serious. Tuesday’s MRI results came back negative, but the talented middle infielder will likely miss the opener.

Tommy Hanson, ARL – Hanson was scheduled to pitch in a minor league game on Monday, only to have it rained out. Instead, homeboy took to throwing in a covered batting cage, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. He’s not scheduled to pitch Opening Day, but he is slated as the starter for Saturday’s game in Washington.

Alexi Ramirez, CHW – Lower back injuries can wreak havoc on ballplayers, but Ramirez said Tuesday that he’s feeling much better than Monday, when he missed a tune-up against the Reds. The promising young shortstop doesn’t have any history of back problems, so there isn’t much concern about missing tomorrow’s opener.

Ian Stewart, COL – The Rockies got some good news Wednesday in the form of a two-homer day from Stewart, who went 3 for 7 and reported no issues with his ailing hamstring. He has an intrasquad game today that will probably seal the deal, but he’s leaning toward playing at home against the D-Backs.

Mike Stanton, FLA – Barring something unforeseen, Stanton is locked into the lineup for the home opener against the Mets.

Justin Morneau, MIN – It’s hard to tell if the cautious rhetoric coming out of the Twins PR department is just politically correct blather, or if there’s a legitimate concern that Morneau might not suit up in the opener because his head still ain’t right. The lack of an official announcement is infuriating, but it’s understandable given the seriousness of last season’s concussion and the new precautions involving these injuries. All I can stay is…stay tuned until Ron Gardenhire hands the ump his lineup card.

Curtis Granderson, NYY – I don’t normally trust what I read in The New York Post, but a report that Granderson will be manning centerfield for the Yanks today seems valid. The solid fantasy OF option blasted through his Wednesday workouts in Tampa sans issue, and then played a minor league game with five innings spent at CF (2-for-5, two doubles). It’s hard to say if he’s ready to face Tigers ace Justin Verlander, but he’ll be out there.

Jason Bay, NYM – To DL or not to DL…Bay is dealing with the slings and arrows of a strained rib cage and a sore back, injuries that are perplexing his fantasy owners. If he does end up on the dreaded list, the Mets could backdate him to March 24, allowing an April 9 return – at the earliest. It’s safe to assume a Friday start is out of the question.

Carlos Beltran, NYM – On the other side of the coin, the once-beatified Beltran is making every effort to get into the Metropolitans lineup tomorrow. He looks able-bodied at the plate and in the field, and all signs are pointing to Beltran being a bargain asset in the middle-to-late rounds of fantasy drafts…if he can stay that way.

Jose Tabata, PIT – The Pirates promising young OF left Wednesday’s contest against Philly with a minor right ankle injury that could keep him out of the regular season opener on Friday. It sounds like a day-to-day thing, but your searches on Tabata’s status better be hour-to-hour (maybe even minute-to-minute) if you’re dead set on using him against the Cubbies.

Matt Holliday, STL – The latest word from MLB.com is that Holliday and his bum toe will bat fourth in the opener today against the Padres. I’m assuming the MLB.com folks know what they’re talking about, and that he’s safe to play. Still – as the most expensive LF in FanDuel’s $35K MLB Salary Cap game opener, you should stay updated right up until the 1:00 p.m. EST deadline.

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