Unable to shake off the effects of a rib cage injury suffered during a World Baseball Classic exhibition, Blue Jays third basemen Brett Lawrie will begin the season on the 15-day DL.
Though falling short of heightened expectations last season, Lawrie still enters 2013 as a top-10 player at his position. Don’t let this injury setback damper those prospects, as Lawrie is only imagined to miss a week or two of action.
Fellow third baseman David Freese will be joining Lawrie on the sidelines to start the season, as lingering back issues have forced a trip to the DL. The 2011 World Series MVP posted an impressive .293/.372/.467 split in 144 games with St. Louis last season. Alas, Cardinals fans have to be concerned, as the back issue is just the latest injury from Freese, whose career has been marred with its fair share of ailments.
For the Cardinals, Matt Carpenter, who spent most of spring training preparing for a role at second base, will slide over to third as Freese’s substitute, and makes for an intriguing add in deeper or NL-only leagues. Maicer Izturis and Mark DeRosa are envisioned to fill in at hot corner for the Jays in Lawrie’s absence, but neither are viable options on your fantasy roster. Instead, shoot for Baltimore’s Manny Machado (owned in 55.5 percent of leagues) or New York’s Kevin Youkilis (49.6 percent) as short-term fill-ins, as both possess the potential to earn spots on your lineup for the rest of the season.
In AL-only leagues, Trevor Plouffe (11.8 percent) is probably the best available entity, while Placido Polanco gets the nod in NL-only formats. In deeper leagues, Atlanta’s Chris Johnson (5.6 percent) and Colorado’s Jordan Pacheco (3.3 percent) merit a look.