Fantasy Baseball Injury Rankings: Top 50 IL stashes show Blake Snell still a high priority

Here we go again with Blake Snell. Before the reigning NL Cy Young winner has even had the chance to get comfortable in a Giants uniform, he’s back on the IL with the same groin injury that already sidelined him for a month.

Between the two IL stints, he’s made six starts for his new team, but chances are you haven’t gotten credit for anything he’s done yet. Or I should hope not, anyway. His late signing and hurried buildup seemed like a disaster in the making, given his well-documented volatility, and all the interruptions certainly haven’t helped to stabilize things. In the face of another IL stint, it’s easy to look at his 9.51 ERA and 1.94 WHIP and declare him dead weight.

But of course, you should know better than to prejudge Snell after only six starts. Through nine starts last year, he had a 5.40 ERA and 1.56 WHIP. Through 10 starts in 2022, he had a 5.22 ERA and 1.48 WHIP. Through 19 starts in 2021, he had a 5.44 ERA and 1.61 WHIP. In each of those instances, without any forewarning, he flipped a switch that made him indispensable in Fantasy the rest of the way, going so far as to earn him a Cy Young award last year.

There’s of course no guarantee that his 2024 follows the same pattern, but a three-year trend is one you have to see through to the bitter end. You knew what you were getting into when you drafted Snell. Allow him to fall into the wrong hands, and you’ll feel the pain twice over. The good news is that, at least for the time being, you don’t have to use up a bench spot to keep him around.

In other IL developments … welcome back, Royce Lewis. The oft-injured third baseman had been shelved since straining his quadriceps on opening day but was activated Tuesday. So was White Sox outfielder Luis Robert, who had been out since April 5 with a strained hip flexor. Seeing as both were selected in the first five rounds of Fantasy drafts, they would have placed near the top of these IL stash rankings if they were still injured.

Too valuable to drop, period

Also really difficult to drop

Still a priority on some level

Stashing is purely a luxury

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