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Clinical Notes: CarGo Lands on the DL
Dan Port | Friday July 22nd, 2011
Carlos Gonzalez is headed to the DL for the first time. (Icon SMI)
Carlos Gonzalez is headed to the DL for the first time. (Icon SMI)

The 2011 season has already seen several significant injuries to superstar players, and yet another one took place this week when, for the first time in his career, star Rockies outfielder Carlos Gonzalez was placed on the disabled list with a strained right wrist.

Gonzalez, one of the game's brightest rising stars, suffered the wrist injury during an at-bat in Thursday's game against Altanta Braves pitcher Tommy Hanson.  The injury appears to be an aggravation of an injury he suffered earlier this month while making a defensive play in center field.  That injury was described as a bruised wrist and forced Gonzalez to miss several games, but didn't necessitate a trip to the DL.

CarGo began 2011 in a hitting slump and managed just one home run and a .228 batting average in April, but he rebounded nicely after that and brought his season numbers up to .289 with 15 home runs and 16 stolen bases.  He was among the league's best hitters last year and finished third in National League MVP voting after posting a league-best .336 average with 34 home runs and 26 stolen bases, so his contributions to the Rockies lineup will certainly be missed.

His absence will be even more devastating to fantasy baseball owners, as Gonzalez was among the top picks in most drafts this season (with a 4.75 average draft position according to Mock Draft Central) and was capable of helping teams in all major hitting categories.  It is unknown right now exactly how much time he will miss, but fantasy owners are certainly hoping that he will be able to return to action as soon as he is eligible to come off of the disabled list next month.

To take CarGo's place on the roster, the Rockies recalled speedy centerfielder/second baseman Eric Young Jr.   Young, 26, has been shuttled from Triple-A Colorado Springs to the Rockies and back several times in the last three seasons, so he's no stranger to being recalled to fill a spot.  Young possesses blazing speed and good defensive skills, but he hasn't hit very well as a big leaguer and has just a .242 career average and a .299 on-base percentage in 301 career major league plate appearances.  Fantasy owners in need of stolen bases may want to give him a look, but he may not see regular playing time behind current Rockies outfielders Dexter Fowler and Ryan Spilborghs (who have both played center field this year), as well as recently acquired second baseman Mark Ellis.
Dan PortDan Port has been a writer and article editor for Baseball Press since the fall of 2009. He's a Wisconsin native and Los Angeles resident, as well as an aspiring novelist, moderately successful gambler, and avid craft beer aficionado. You can reach him at dan@baseballpress.com or check him out on Twitter @danport and at DanielPort.com.