With about one month before catchers and starting pitchers report to Spring Training, some MLB players will have to wait on the sidelines before making their first appearance as they are recovering from serious injuries and will need more time to recover and be ready to play for their respective teams.
It is important to know which players will not be ready for training camp as to avoid drafting them too early when you participate in a fantasy baseball draft. Below you will find a list of 10 players who injuries warrant to be monitored.
Ryan Madson, relief pitcher (Los Angeles Angels)
Madson, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, was doing about 120 throws from 120 feet back in December. He is currently throwing off mound, but is not scheduled to pitch in exhibition games until mid-March in Spring Training. It now appears that Madson will not be ready for the season opener, so look for the Angels to turn to Ernesto Frieri as the team's closer to begin the season.
Casey Janssen, relief pitcher (Toronto Blue Jays)
The Blue Jays right-hander Casey Janssen underwent successful surgery on his right shoulder to repair lingering AC joint soreness back in November. The surgery was done to relieve the discomfort in his throwing arm and Janssen is expected to be ready for Spring Training. Monitor the situation closely as Janssen is a strong candidate to be the closer in Toronto after a solid 2012 campaign.
Brian McCann, catcher (Atlanta Braves)
After undergoing surgery to surgically repair his right shoulder, McCann has began playing catch, but he has yet to start hitting and is expected to miss part of Spring Training. Coming off a tough season, the veteran catcher will want to prove he can still hit well and be a force to reckon with entering the last year of his contract. Follow his progress through March as McCann is currently ahead of schedule and could very well be ready for opening day.
Brandon Beachy, starting pitcher (Atlanta Braves)
Beachy is currently recovering from Tommy John surgery and is eyeing a mid-June return. The right-handed pitcher still has a long way to go before he returns to form, so let another manager take a chance on him this season.
Corey Hart, 1st baseman/outfielder (Milwaukee Brewers)
The power hitter will be sidelined four months following right knee surgery to repair a small tear to Hart’s meniscus and debride the knee joint, in order to remove damaged tissue to heal the surrounding tissue. After making the transition to first base last summer, Hart dressed for 149 games playing through a swollen knee which hampered him all season. Hart is expected to return to action in late May or early June, so draft him accordingly.
Jaime Garcia, starting pitcher (St. Louis Cardinals)
Garcia elected not to have surgery to address a left shoulder injury that interrupted and then ended his season prematurely. The left-hander has only thrown off the mound once since the end of the season and that mound session came way back in November, after which Garcia was shut down and decided to focus solely on rehab work. Garcia has resumed throwing on flat ground and he is expected to throw his first bullpen session of 2013 within the next week. His return to the Cards' starting rotation is far from certain as Garcia might every well not be ready for opening day. Monitor his status on a weekly basis to see how he is progressing.
Daniel Hudson, starting pitcher (Arizona Diamondbacks)
Hudson, who saw his season cut short in late June when he sustained an elbow injury that required Tommy John surgery, began playing catch from just over 100 feet back in December. So far there hasn't been no setbacks in his rehabilitation and he is on pace to return to action next July. Avoid Hudson on draft day as he struggled mightily last season prior to his injury.
Kenley Jensen, relief pitcher (Los Angeles Dodgers)
The Dodgers closer underwent surgery back in October to correct an irregular heartbeat. During the procedure, the abnormal tissue in his heart was identified and then cauterized to stop the erratic electrical signals sent from the area. Jensen, who is feeling so much better physically, is expected to retain the closer's duties with the Dodgers.
Carl Crawford, outfielder (Los Angeles Dodgers)
Crawford, who had Tommy John elbow reconstruction surgery one day before the Dodgers acquired him via trade, is currently rehabbing from his Houston home. Crawford, who also underwent left wrist surgery last spring, is still experiencing some pain from time to time in his wrist. Steer clear of Crawford on draft day as he is coming off two major surgery, so let another manager take a gamble on him and be burned by Crawford once again.
Matt Kemp, outfielder (Los Angeles Dodgers)
Kemp had significant surgery to repair a labrum injury, sustained when he smashed into the center-field wall at Coors Field on August 27th. Kemp reported last week that he is ahead of schedule and that he is positive he will be ready for opening day or mid-April at the latest. Kemp is currently hitting off the tee, but he has yet to play catch during his rehabilitation. Kemp is the complete package and is too talent not to rebound from this severe injury, don't hesitate to select him in the first or second round of your draft.
Come back next week for part 2 of this injury update!
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