Michael Morse Out Six Plus Weeks

Michael Morse will be out at least six weeks before he can even begin to rehab his strained right lat.

Analysis: The estimated return of Morse seems to be in mid to late June. That’s two months of raw power that will be missing from fantasy lineups across the country. Morse hit .303 last year with 31 bombs, 95 RBI and most reliable projections had him hitting 25-30 home runs this year. With his temporal loss it gives some the chance to add some first base depth to their squad.

Justin Morneau makes a solid replacement for Morse. Morneau hit his first home run of the season Thursday night and appears to be healthy. He has not played over ninety games in a season in two years but you just need him to last until June. He’s hitting .281 for his career and he also sports a solid .498 career slugging percentage. In deeper leagues it appears Jesus Guzman will have plenty of value with tons of plate appearances. Guzman may be playing left field for the Padres but he has first base eligibility and he’s hitting cleanup right now.

Matt Holliday, Josh Hamilton, Miguel Cabrera+: Consistent Mashers

Issue: For the careful fantasy player who wants bankable hitting production in HR, RBI, and R without damaging his team BA, where should he look?

Facts:¬†Auction/Draft Prep Tools: Categories Leader Board Last 3 Seasons— Thirty-nine hitters with

60+HR

200+RBI

200+ R

.270+ BA.

Ranked below by BA.

Player PA HR RBI R BA
Albert Pujols 2041 126 369 339 .331
Matt Holliday 1968 77 300 296 .315
Josh Hamilton 1640 74 284 236 .315
Hanley Ramirez 1964 78 249 318 .314
Miguel Cabrera 2017 109 356 292 .314
Joey Votto 1781 86 281 257 .314
Manny Ramirez 1405 65 226 202 .311
Kevin Youkilis 1644 75 271 267 .308
Robinson Cano 2004 68 266 276 .304
Ryan Braun 2055 94 323 306 .303
Justin Morneau 1650 71 285 235 .300
Vladimir Guerrero 1650 71 256 227 .300
David Wright 2023 72 299 290 .297
Ryan Zimmerman 1762 72 242 246 .294
Troy Tulowitzki 1578 67 233 238 .294
Andre Ethier 1866 74 265 253 .289
Derrek Lee 1939 74 281 264 .286
Alex Rodriguez 1724 95 328 256 .286
Adrian Beltre 1730 61 223 212 .286
Mark Teixeira 2104 105 351 318 .285
Adrian Gonzalez 2073 107 319 280 .285
Torii Hunter 1760 66 258 235 .285
Chase Utley 1905 80 262 300 .284
Evan Longoria 1840 82 302 263 .283
Raul Ibanez 1908 73 286 253 .281
Lance Berkman 1708 68 244 235 .281
Aubrey Huff 1926 73 279 255 .280
Prince Fielder 2127 112 326 283 .279
Jayson Werth 1810 87 251 277 .279
Matt Kemp 1992 72 266 272 0.279
Paul Konerko 1766 89 261 223 0.279
Hunter Pence 1947 75 246 247 0.278
Aramis Ramirez 1494 67 259 204 0.278
Vernon Wells 1796 66 232 226 0.275
Jason Kubel 1677 69 273 215 0.274
Jason Bay 1709 73 267 262 0.273
Ryan Ludwick 1707 76 279 230 0.273
Corey Hart 1743 63 241 231 0.271
J.D. Drew 1541 65 200 232 0.270

 

Analysis: Let’s put our arms around these 39 by slotting them into recognizable types:

Usually Out Performs His Salary: Drew (not sexy).

Post-Injury Bounce Back: Bay, Utley, Morneau.

May Have A Production Bump In Him: Hart, Kubel, Wells, Manny.

Possible Slight Bargain: Ludwick, Fielder, Huff, Berkman, Teixeira, Lee, Vlad, Cabrerra, Holliday.

Probably Over-Priced: Aramis, Konerko, Kemp, Werth, Ibanez, Adrian G., Beltre, A-Rod, Wright, Braun, Cano, Votto, Hanley, Hamilton.

Get What You Pay For: Pence, Longoria, Hunter, Ethier, Tulo, Zimmerman, Youkilis, Pujols.

Projections:

Name AVG R RBI HR SB AB
Albert Pujols 0.318 110 114 39 10 571
Ryan Braun 0.293 105 108 35 16 624
Hanley Ramirez 0.302 105 84 24 30 591
Miguel Cabrera 0.304 99 119 34 4 595
Joey Votto 0.297 97 109 32 11 581
Adrian Gonzalez 0.306 103 105 33 1 583
Matt Holliday 0.304 95 99 25 13 585
Troy Tulowitzki 0.291 96 103 26 12 561
Alex Rodriguez 0.280 89 118 32 11 517
David Wright 0.289 96 95 24 20 597
Robinson Cano 0.306 92 94 25 4 613
Josh Hamilton 0.306 86 102 26 9 541
Mark Teixeira 0.276 101 114 33 2 582
Jayson Werth 0.278 99 90 27 17 568
Evan Longoria 0.280 96 100 28 11 601
Kevin Youkilis 0.298 97 98 24 6 522
Matt Kemp 0.275 91 85 24 26 612
Chase Utley 0.278 98 88 24 14 542
Prince Fielder 0.274 89 98 34 3 551
Adrian Beltre 0.293 82 89 25 8 582
Brandon Phillips 0.268 95 84 21 20 635
Ryan Zimmerman 0.286 92 90 26 3 593
Hunter Pence 0.272 88 86 25 15 633
Justin Morneau 0.289 85 96 25 1 527
Andre Ethier 0.283 87 89 25 4 583
Torii Hunter 0.274 84 90 21 15 563
Vladimir Guerrero 0.281 78 91 26 4 512
Corey Hart 0.271 81 82 22 13 540
Aramis Ramirez 0.270 75 100 24 2 510
Derrek Lee 0.281 78 85 23 3 513
Aubrey Huff 0.267 85 89 20 4 576
Vernon Wells 0.265 81 81 20 9 595
Jason Bay 0.248 83 85 24 10 522
Raul Ibanez 0.278 70 79 20 3 472
Jason Kubel 0.267 68 82 21 2 494
Ryan Ludwick 0.253 73 85 23 3 532
J.D. Drew 0.265 77 70 20 4 456
Lance Berkman 0.262 71 74 18 7 464
Manny Ramirez 0.276 66 71 19 2 416

Will Justin Morneau Start 2011 on the Disabled List?

The Twins burly first baseman reported to camp this morning, still dealing with prolonged issues from a concussion suffered last July.

Analysis: A former MVP and feared power threat, Morneau hit the Disabled List on July 7 after his head and the knee of Toronto’s John McDonald made dangerous contact while attempting to prevent a double play. Over seven months later some symptoms still remain, leaving his availability for Opening Day up in the air. At the time of his injury Morneau was on pace for one of his best seasons yet, hitting .345 with 18 home runs in 81 games. However, the days and weeks following that fateful day have been a tough road for Justin, who has reportedly run the gamut of concussion symptoms since. Early reports out of Twins camp are that Morneau plans to participate in a regular training schedule but that he will miss at least the first four games of the team’s Grapefruit League schedule.

Projection: Trying to predict a timetable when concussions are involved is almost an impossibility. Add that to the fact that this was Morneau’s third concussion (one as a child, one in 2005 after being hit in the head with a Ron Villone pitch) and you’re entering very choppy waters. Personally, Morneau has been a perennial keeper in my H2H league since 2006. I’ve decided, after much trepidation, that I have to cut him loose this season. Although the obvious potential to produce is there, I don’t think that the possibility of lost time is worth the risk at a position where several prominent alternatives exist. ¬†He is definitely someone to keep a close eye on in the coming weeks.