It really wouldn’t be an MLB injury roundup without news on Mike Trout and Byron Buxton. Both of those guys — and many others — are included in today’s April 18th edition.
Mike Trout, OF, Los Angeles Angels
Fortunately, it looks like Trout is relatively OK after he was hit on his left hand by a pitch Sunday against the Rangers. X-rays came back negative, and Trout is considered day-to-day. However, today, he is out of the Angels’ lineup. Brandon Marsh will replace Trout in center field, with Jo Adell in left and Taylor Ward in right. Still, he should return to action soon. Trout has a .972 OPS with five extra-base hits and six walks through nine games this season.
Byron Buxton, OF, Minnesota Twins
The news is similarly relieving for another oft-injured star outfielder. Buxton left Friday’s game in the first inning due to left knee soreness, but an MRI later that day showed no structural damage, so Buxton may also be back in relatively short order. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reported over the weekend that Buxton will miss probably “a week or so.” Great news for the Twins and fantasy owners alike as the 28-year-old has three homers and one steal in seven games so far. His absence means more at-bats for Trevor Larnach, who debuted on April 13 and was a top-100 prospect prior to last season. Larnach had a three-hit game on Saturday against the Red Sox.
Ronald Acuna Jr., OF, Atlanta Braves
The Braves have said since Spring Training that they are planning to get Acuna back into their lineup during the first week of May. It looks like the three-time All-Star is right on schedule. Acuna, who is coming back from a torn ACL last July, is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment at Triple-A on Tuesday. Fantasy managers who took Acuna near the top of their drafts — your wait is almost over.
Adley Rutschman, C, Baltimore Orioles
If not for a preseason injury Rutschman would probably be raking in Charm City today. Alas, the No. 2 prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline has been out of action since mid-March because of a right triceps strain. When will he get back into a game? “Very soon,” per Orioles general manager Mike Elias. That’s what he said during an interview Friday. Now, to be clear, Elias isn’t talking about putting Rutschman in an MLB game right away. He will first go through some extended Spring Training games and follow that with some Minor League games in order to get his timing back. Once that’s complete, the former No. 1 overall pick should finally be in The Show. Maybe that’s just a few weeks off in the distance.
Ryan Pressly, RP, Houston Astros
There’s good news and bad news for the Astros on the injury front. The good news is that Yordan Alvarez is back in the lineup Monday, batting fourth against the Angels, after missing a handful of games due to an illness.
The bad news is Houston will be without its closer for at least another week or so. Pressly was placed on the 10-day injured list Saturday with right knee inflammation. Pressly has been one of the best relievers in baseball since 2020, but his velocity has been down 2-3 mph across the board this year. Maybe this is why. Pressly had surgery on the same knee in 2019. Until he returns, Hector Neris seems to be the favorite for saves in Houston. Ryne Stanek and Rafael Montero may also contribute in the ninth inning.
Hyun Jin Ryu, SP, Toronto Blue Jays
Ryu was sent to the injured list Sunday with left forearm inflammation. One of the better starters in the game from 2018-20, Ryu took a big step back in 2021 — 4.37 ERA, 7.6 strikeouts per nine innings — as he dealt with multiple IL stints. Now he’s given up 11 earned runs in 7.1 innings this year and is hurt again. Maybe he comes back looking like his former self, but Ryu is always injury-prone and may just be tiring out at age 35. There is currently no timetable for his return.