It has certainly been an up and down season for Orioles third baseman Manny Machado. He started the season on the disabled list while recovering from a knee injury suffered last September. He got suspended for throwing a bat, and pretty much inciting a riot against the A’s in June. Now he heads back to the disabled list with, you guessed it, another knee injury.
The good news for Machado and his owners is that it does not seem to be nearly as severe as the one suffered last year. That said, the Orioles still sent him to the DL, and Machado himself has strongly hinted that he won’t be able to play again this year. So we should plan for the worst.
Since Machado was having a down year anyway (.278 average, 12 home runs, 32 RBI, two steals), it won’t be that hard to replace him in most leagues.
Here I will try to give you some options that will ease the loss of Machado. I will try to point out those with similar or better stats wherever possible.
The standard league replacements are available in 15-50 percent of leagues. The moderates are available in 51-90 percent of leagues. The deep league replacements are available in 90 percent of more of leagues.
Yangervis Solarte, Padres: He may miss a couple of days with an oblique strain, but he club, and Solarte himself, are confident that he will be back by Monday at the latest. That is a good thing because Solarte is enjoying San Diego so far. He has a .282 average with three homers , 11 RBI, and 15 runs scored in 20 games there.
Lonnie Chisenhall, Indians: His overall numbers are just as good as Machado’s (.292 average, 11 homers, 46 RBI, two steals), but beware that he is struggling in August.
Chase Headley, Yankees: In 20 games in the Bronx, Headley is hitting .250 with two homers, eight RBI, and a steal. While these numbers are not great, they are better than his numbers were in San Diego, and he has that short porch in right field at Yankee Stadium. He could go off at any time.
Trevor Plouffe, Twins: His overall numbers (.246, eight homers, 55 RBI) aren’t that great, but he is heating up in August. He has ten RBI already this month, and is hitting near .400. That makes him worth taking a chance on.
Nick Castellanos, Tigers: His .262 average, nine homers, and 46 RBI are very close to what you were getting from Machado, and Castellanos has the advantage of playing in one of the best lineups in baseball.
Juan Uribe, Dodgers: He has no speed and half the power (six homers on the year) of Machado, but he is hitting .296 on the year. That has to count for something!
Mike Moustakas, Royals: The 14 homers and 48 RBI are close to what Machado was providing, but Moustakas comes with an average that is still on the wrong side of the Mendoza line at .199. That is mostly due to his abysmal start to the season, and he has hit .228 since June 1st. Hey, progress is progress!
Matt Dominguez, Astros: He has 14 homers and 50 RBI, and comes with the same caveat as Moustakas. That said, his average is still 30 points higher than Mous, but Dominguez has been more consistent throughout the year.