Scooter Gennett — Right Groin Strain
Scooter Gennett will begin the 2019 on the Injured List due to a “severe right groin strain.” Gennett has been given an 8-12 week timetable, which would keep him out until late-May to early-June. Gennett has not previously missed time due to a groin strain. The timetable provided seems accurate, though I anticipate we’ll land on the longer end and not see Gennett until June.
While this is obviously not ideal for Gennett, it will be interesting to see how his absence changes the Cincinnati Reds lineup over the next two months. José Peraza will start the year at 2B and likely gain eligibility there. Nick Senzel may return to his natural position at 2B, rather than following the previously discussed plan of moving to CF. Scott Schebler, Jesse Winker, and Matt Kemp may benefit from additional at-bats if not battling with Senzel for playing time.
Estimated return: late-May to early-June.
José Ramirez — Left Knee Contusion
José Ramirez was removed from action on Sunday (March 24) after fouling a ball off the inside of his left knee. X-rays came back negative, ruling out a fracture. His injury is being called a contusion at this time. The mechanism of injury is not indicative of any structural damage. Ramirez may still undergo an MRI within a few days in effort to identify a potential bone bruise—which would complicate his situation immensely. While Ramirez could likely return in short order if only suffering from a contusion, the Cleveland Indians are in the least competitive division in baseball and have no reason to push Ramirez. The Indians will likely proceed slowly with Ramirez, similar to their treatment of Andrew Miller last season.
Estimated return: early-April.
Corey Knebel — Right UCL Sprain
Corey Knebel is seeking additional opinions on his sprained right elbow. Knebel’s UCL is not completely torn, though there is definite structural damage—it sounds like a grade 2 UCL sprain. Knebel has reportedly pitched through a mild UCL sprain for a few years. Typically when a player is seeking a second opinion, it is because the first opinion yielded a less than favorable outcome (in this case, surgery). I imagine that surgery will be Knebel’s fate and that he may not pitch in 2019. Even if he opts for conservative management—a combination of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections and rest—Knebel is still likely to miss significant time this year.
Estimated return: Out until 2020 if surgically repaired. Out until at least the second half of 2019 with conservative management.
Dellin Betances — Right Shoulder Impingement
Dellin Betances has been diagnosed with a right shoulder impingement. Void of any additional structural damage, Betances is likely to return without complication. Betances has been prescribed anti-inflammatory medication and will likely be shut down from throwing for about two weeks. At that point, Betances will return to throwing and will likely return to play within two to three weeks of that point. In 2018, Jordan Zimmermann missed five weeks due to a shoulder impingement—and Zimmermann had to build up to a starter’s workload.
Estimated return: late-April to early-May.
Kevin Gausman — Shoulder Discomfort
Kevin Gausman has returned to action in a minor league game and a spring training game (pitch count: 78) since battling shoulder discomfort earlier in the spring. Gausman will begin the season on the Injured List, but he is anticipated to toe the rubber on April 6th. This return date seems reasonable. Gausman will continue to build his pitch count to a starter’s workload and should return as schedule barring any setbacks.
Estimated return: April 6th.