The Doctor’s Room will, for the duration of the season, examine the game’s most notable injuries and the expected recovery times for the stars in question.
Brandon Belt, 1B, San Francisco Giants
Most of the head-to-head settings have already finished their season by now, but there are still a few leagues playing the final matchup, and rotisserie, of course, is still active. Owners who have Brandon Belt in those settings will lose a very valuable hitter for the final four games of the year, as he has been placed on the 10-day injured list with a fractured left thumb.
He got hit by a pitch on his hand in Colorado over the weekend, and the Giants confirmed the diagnosis on Tuesday. It appears he will be reevaluated in a couple of weeks, meaning he could miss San Francisco’s entire postseason run. Just brutal.
Belt hit a career-high 29 home runs in just 97 games this year, with a rock-solid .975 OPS.
Jacob deGrom, SP, New York Mets
At long last, the New York Mets, now out of the race for the playoffs, decided there is just no point on bringing back their ace Jacob deGrom for an appearance or two before the end of the season. The pitcher threw a side session on Monday and reported no issues, but after missing almost three months with right elbow ailments that included a partially torn UCL, the team is not taking any chances.
DeGrom finishes the season with a spectacular 1.08 ERA in 92 innings of work. He struck out 146 hitters and his WHIP was a ridiculous 0.55. If injuries had treated him better (he battled side, shoulder, and forearm issues, too), he could have had a historic campaign. Oh well.
Joey Gallo, OF, New York Yankees
Joey Gallo has been a bit banged up recently. He had to miss Sunday’s game after leaving Saturday with neck tightness, but the issue wasn’t major and he started this week in the lineup. Now, however, the team pulled him from Wednesday’s matchup against Toronto after being hit by a pitch in the forearm.
He wasn’t immediately taken out, as he fielded for a couple of frames, but couldn’t take his next at-bat. The team will perform X-rays to rule out any damage and will provide an update before the series finale against the Jays.
Salvador Perez, C, Kansas City Royals
The Kansas City Royals’ catcher is having a dream season, with a .277 batting average, 87 runs, 48 homers (most ever by a backstop in a single season), 121 RBI, and a .871 OPS. But he suffered a scare on Wednesday after he reportedly slipped in the dugout steps, resulting in an ankle sprain diagnosis.
Perez said he hopes to be in the lineup on Thursday, and if he is (it’s not a given yet) he should be the designated hitter. Perhaps he can make a run at 50 home runs if his ankle allows it. Stay tuned for updates.
Jameson Taillon, SP, New York Yankees
Taillon missed multiple weeks in September with a partially torn tendon in his right ankle. He returned on Thursday and had to depart after only 2.1 innings because he re-aggravated the ailment.
This means that he won’t pitch again in the regular season and his availability in the playoffs, should the Yankees make it that far, is now in question.
Taillon’s first year in the Bronx ends with a 4.40 ERA, 138 strikeouts and a 1.21 WHIP in 141.0 frames. Not bad, but with lots of room to improve.
Gavin Lux, 2B/OF, Los Angeles Dodgers
With a .692 OPS for the season, Gavin Lux’s 2021 has been a disappointment. However, he has been hot in his last 15 games (.383/.473/.532) and was a nice waiver wire addition for owners who scooped him up.
He has, according to manager Dave Roberts, a neck stinger. All things considered, it is a best-case scenario situation after crashing into the outfield wall on Wednesday. He will be reevaluated on Thursday and should be considered day-to-day.
Last Week’s Doctor Room:
Chris Bassitt, multiple facial fractures: Already back in action
Jesse Winker, intercostal strain: Unlikely to return this year
Yordan Alvarez, general soreness: Already back in action
Wade Miley, stiff neck: Eligible to return on Saturday, unclear if he will pitch
Cody Bellinger, fractured rib: Already back in action
Willy Adames, left quad injury: Returned to action but has been on and off the lineup with the ailment