On Monday, Florida Marlins shortstop Hanley Ramirez joined an already long list of superstars who have spent time on the disabled list in the first two months of the season. The all-star shortstop landed on the 15-day disabled list for the first time due to a strained back.
Clinical Notes - Hanley Ramirez Lands on the DL
Tuesday June 7th, 2011
Owners can take some solace in the face that he managed to outlast the likes of Josh Hamilton, Pablo Sandoval, teammate Josh Johnson, and Buster Posey, among others. The good news is that his DL stint is retroactive to May 30, meaning he is eligible to return June 14. Ramirez sees no reason as to why he will not be back in the lineup in a week, saying that "he already feels much better than when the back inflammation first kept him out of the lineup."
In the meantime, Emilio Bonifacio has taken over as the everyday starter as shortstop while lefthanded pitcher Brad Hand was called up from Double-A Jacksonville to take over Ramirez's roster spot. The DL stint may provide Hanley with a mental break from the game, allowing him to regroup and hopefully, for the sake of his fantasy owners as well as the Marlins, come back stronger. He was batting a meagre .210 with four home runs, 17 RBI and 11 stolen bases in 181 at-bats. None of those statistics ranked in the top five among shortstops.
Bonifacio has gotten yet another chance to prove himself in Hanley's absence, however, he has not done so effectively. He is batting .256 with one home run and 9 RBI in over 150 at-bats. Owners should look elsewhere for a temporary replacement at the shortstop position. Players such as Orlando Cabrera, J.J. Hardy and the recently called up Dee Gordon could all prove to be valuable replacements for the time being.
Dee Gordon was just called up by the Dodgers yesterday and made his major league debut coming in as a pinch runner in the ninth inning, scoring the Dodgers only run of the game in the process. He has Juan Pierre type-speed which showed in his 50 games in Triple-A this season. He batted .315 and had 22 stolen bases, while being caught only three times. Gordon should be an everyday starter in place of the injured Rafael Furcal.
Considering Hanley should only be out for another week or so, all three of these players should be considered strong roster fillers for the time being.
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