C Miguel Olivo (by default)
|No caption necessary|
1B Ryan Howard
The big fella is still recovering from offseason achilles surgery, and just completed his first week of rehab. Philadelphia is optimistic he can return by the end of the month and provide the lineup with a much needed power boost.
2B Chase Utley
After averaging 151 games played from 2005 through '09, Utley hasn't been the same guy since turning 31. He's missed an average of 53 games per year since then, and when he does play his production has fallen off a cliff. Middle infielders typically don't age well, and Utley looks worn down. There's no timetable for his return.
3B Evan Longoria
Missed a month of action last year, and is back on the shelf again this year after a partially torn hammy put his blazing start on hold for the next six to eight weeks. The Rays have been in a groove, though, and thanks to free agent additions Carlos Pena and Luke Scott they have enough firepower to keep scoring runs while Longoria's on the mend. He has plenty of company among fellow third basemen, as Kevin Youkilis, Ryan Zimmerman, and Pablo Sandoval are hurt as well.
SS Stephen Drew
In fairness, he is JD Drew's kid brother so it seems durability issues run in the family. Drew played just 86 games in 2011 before a broken ankle ended his season, and that same injury has kept him out of commission thus far in 2012. He could be back by the end of the month, though.
His year-plus in a Boston uniform has been an unmitigated disaster. After struggling and missing a month last year Crawford, out with an ulnar collateral ligament sprain in his left elbow, likely won't be back until the All-Star break. He better produce when he returns, because fans won't have any patience for another .255/.289/.405 line. I'd gripe about his contract, but then I'd have to mention John Lackey and Daisuke Matsuzaka, who are also on the DL. Some things are better left unsaid.
OF Jacoby Ellsbury
The 2011 AL MVP runner-up landed on the DL after a brutal collision with Reid Brignac (friggin' Tampa Bay) at second base as he attempted to break up a Dustin Pedroia induced double play. To replace a player of his magnitude, Boston's front office went out and traded for, drumroll please, Marlon Byrd. I'm beginning to understand why the Sox haven't won a playoff game since 2008...
|At least Young made the catch...|
Was giving Matt Kemp a run for his money before he tore a ligament in his right shoulder when he crashed into the centerfield wall while hauling in a drive off the bat of Pedro Alvarez. Was throwing and swinging today, so he may return soon.
DH Victor Martinez
V-Mart is out for the season after tearing ACL over the winter, an injury that spurred the Detroit Tigers to shell out $214 million for Prince Fielder. Nextyear he'll team with Fielder and Miguel Cabrera to form a devastating heart of the order.
SP Cliff Lee
No surprise that Lee went down after twirling ten innings of shutout ball against the Giants back on April 18th (that was just asking for trouble). He looks fully recovered from his oblique strain and will face the Mets on Wednesday.
SP Daniel Hudson
Has been dealing with shoulder issues, but is scheduled for a bullpen session tomorrow. Is targeting a late May return, and hopefully he can put his early season struggles behind him. Several of my fantasy teams are depending on it.
SP Michael Pineda
Underwent shoulder surgery and will miss the rest of the season. His much anticipated New York debut will have to wait until 2013, assuming the world doesn't end in December. But for now, Seattle won't have to second guess trading him away for Jesus Montero.
SP Chris Carpenter
After leading the Senior Circuit in innings pitched at the ripe old age of 35 last year, his shoulder has been troubling them. The Cardinals workhorse is eyeing a midseason return, so until then Lance Lynn, Jake Westbrook and Kyle Lohse just need to keep doing what they're doing. It'd be nice if Adam Wainwright could return to form, too.
SP Cory Luebke
Was enjoying a tremendous start for the last place Padres and seemed to be developing into the staff ace, but will likely need season-ending Tommy John surgery. Stephen Strasburg didn't skip a beat after his surgery, but then again he's Stephen Strasburg.
Relief pitchers are always volatile, even more so than starters, but this attrition rate is just ridiculous. Check out the roll call (one in three teams have already lost their primary closers):
Mariano Rivera-Tore his ACL and meniscus while tracking down a fly ball during batting practice.
Huston Street-Strained right lat with no timetable for a return
Brian Wilson-Out for the year after Tommy John surgery. Enter Santiago Casilla.
Joakim Soria-Underwent Tommy John surgery and is done for the year. Jonathan Broxton looks to return to his glory days as the Dodgers' All-Star closer.
Andrew Bailey-Jonathan Papelbon's replacement is out until August with a right thumb injury. In the meantime Alfredo Aceves will be Bobby Valentine's guy in the ninth inning.
Ryan Madson-Cincinatti's free agent acquisition is out for the season with a torn ligament in his right elbow. Sean Marshall has filled in nicely.
Drew Storen-Has a bone chip in his right elbow. Out until the All-Star break, so Henry Rodriguez should get comfortable in his new role.
Sergio Santos-Right shoulder inflammation. Could throw today and is due back by the end of the month.
Kyle Farnsworth-Right elbow injury has him out until June, but Fernando Rodney has been a revelation as the substitute closer and deserves to keep the job.
Brad Lidge-Abdominal wall strain, due back in June
Joba Chamberlain-No timetable for his return from a torn medial collateral ligament and dislocated ankle. Remember when he used to be good?
Bobby Jenks-Recovering from back surgery and could return after the All-Star break
Reserves-Michael Morse, Lance Berkman, Brett Gardner, Justin Morneau, Jason Bay, Aubrey Huff, Grady Sizemore, Jim Thome, Brian Roberts, Zimmerman, Longoria, Sandoval, Scott Baker, Tim Stauffer