Felix Hernandez to DL

by Michael Egnak on April 23, 2007 @ 16:00:00 PDT


Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Felix Hernandez (elbow) was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained flexor ligament in his right elbow. He suffered the injury Wednesday, April 18, and left the team's game early. In the first inning, after he threw a 2-1 pitch, he grimaced and then signaled for team trainers. Results of the MRI were negative. He will miss at least two starts, spanning 10 to 20 days.

Hernandez was off to a remarkable start this year, going 2-0 in his first two games of the season. In those two games, he pitched a one-hit, complete-game shutout of the Boston Red Sox and an eight-inning, 12-strikeout shutout performance in the season opener. Through 17 innings pitched this season, Hernandez had allowed just four hits and four walks while striking out 18 batters.

Wednesday, his third appearance of the season, was the only game he struggled in. Hernandez allowed his first two runs of the season in the first inning of the game, and he was only able to get one batter out. He also allowed two hits and a walk in the first inning of the game against the Minnesota Twins.

Hopefully the strain heals and doesn't turn into a more serious injury. It would be dreadful to see Seattle repeat the same mistake the Minnesota Twins made with their young phenom, starting pitcher Francisco Liriano (elbow). Liriano is out for the 2007 season after undergoing reconstructive elbow surgery last November. If Hernandez continued to pitch through the pain, this would have likely been the outcome.

For Hernandez owners in fantasy leagues, there are still some solid pitchers available on the waiver wire. Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Kyle Lohse is off to a strong start. Lohse (1-0, 1.91 ERA) has struck out 23 hitters this season in 28.1 innings, including an 11-strikeout performance against the Chicago Cubs. Pittsburgh Pirates starting pitcher Tom Gorzelanny (3-0, 2.00 ERA, 0.99 WHIP) is another young pitcher performing well. Gorzelanny doesn't help fantasy teams as much in strikeouts, but he's posting a tremendous WHIP and ERA right now.

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About Michael Egnak

Michael Egnak is a Hot Off The Wire Analyst at KFFL and has been with the company since 2005. Covering both NFL and MLB, Egnak is also a key contributor to KFFL's fantasy services.

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