Beat the Shift Podcast – Injury Returnee Episode

The Injury Returnee Episode of the Beat the Shift Podcast – a baseball podcast for fantasy baseball players.

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Ariel is the 2019 FSWA Baseball Writer of the Year. Ariel is also the winner of the 2020 FSWA Baseball Article of the Year award. He is the creator of the ATC (Average Total Cost) Projection System. Ariel was ranked by FantasyPros as the #1 fantasy baseball expert in 2019. His ATC Projections were ranked as the #1 most accurate projection system over the past three years (2019-2021). Ariel also writes for CBS Sports, SportsLine, RotoBaller, and is the host of the Beat the Shift Podcast (@Beat_Shift_Pod). Ariel is a member of the inaugural Tout Wars Draft & Hold league, a member of the inaugural Mixed LABR Auction league and plays high stakes contests in the NFBC. Ariel is the 2020 Tout Wars Head to Head League Champion. Ariel Cohen is a fellow of the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) and the Society of Actuaries (SOA). He is a Vice President of Risk Management for a large international insurance and reinsurance company. Follow Ariel on Twitter at @ATCNY.

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Jonathan Sher
4 months ago

Trout’s injury, costovertebral dysfunction, occurs in the joint where a rib (T5 in his case) connects to his pine in a way that does not allow for proper rotational movement, which is a concern for him as a hitter since his timing and explosiveness depends upon rotation. Either the joint gets stuck or no gets out of alignment with the other joints where ribs meet spine – the joint includes a capsule, ligaments and cartilage which can be damaged, more typically in a contact sport when the force of contact cause the joint to move in a way it should not.

It’s treated with massage and stretching, but my worry with Trout is that if if the injury was caused by chronic stress from swinging, then resuming that activity might aggravate it. Given his injury history in recent years, he hasn’t played a full season since 2016, and his age (soon to be 31), this new injury adds some risk to his future production. I would be reluctant to trade for him and depend upon him for this season; since May 29th his wRC+ has been 121, which is good but nowhere near elite, which suggests to me his injury developed over time.

From 2012 to 2019 Trout was easily the most dominant hitter in baseball. It was inevitable that with aging he was going to lose his grip on dominance over time, but the latest injury might make for a somewhat steeper decline.