The Associated Press reports New York Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui (knee) will have surgery on his left knee Monday, Sept. 22, and miss the rest of the season. He finished the year hitting .294 with nine homers and 45 RBIs in 337 at-bats. He expects to be ready for spring training.
Matsui's absence will give the team a chance to play youngsters in the outfield or at designated hitter. Outfielders Brett Gardner and Melky Cabrera could benefit. Cabrera is hitting .243 with eight homers, 36 RBIs and nine steals in 404 at-bats. Gardner is hitting .190 on the season with 12 RBIs and 11 steals in 100 at-bats.
Cabrera's disappointing season should prompt the Yanks to give a closer examination to Gardner. Neither of them has much fantasy value in mixed setups, but Gardner could be picked up in AL-only leagues, especially if you need steals in the final week of the fantasy season.
Matsui can be released in non-retention leagues. The team could use Matsui as their everyday first baseman next season, which should aid Matsui's fantasy value as it should keep him healthier. Matsui doesn't have enough home run power to serve as a stellar fantasy first baseman, but he has great RBI potential. He should fall to the middle rounds of most fantasy drafts next year given his knee problems in the last few seasons.
About Ryan Dodson
Dodson is a KFFL Contributor and has been with KFFL since 2002.
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