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Scott Pianowski

Pre-Closing Time: Oh no, Hamilton

Scott Pianowski
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It's been a tough year for the Hamiltons, all things considered. Brad lost his girlfriend and his job, the family pool got messed up, Stacy had that medical procedure. And now the other cleat has dropped with Josh Hamilton(notes), as well.

The Texas outfielder needs surgery for his partially torn abdominal muscle and will be lost for 4-6 weeks. According to MLB.com, this injury isn't as bad as a sports hernia. Marlon Byrd's(notes) fantasy value has taken a step forward over the last couple of weeks and now it's apparently safe into the middle of the summer. Join us in the comments for some Hamilton (iced) tea and sympathy.

Khalil Greene(notes) (anxiety) will start a rehab assignment Monday night, but the Cardinals should probably keep running Brendan Ryan(notes) out there at shortstop. Ryan had two more hits and a steal in the matinee loss to Jason Marquis(notes) (eight sneaky wins) and the Rockies. Huston Street(notes) rebounded nicely from last week's blown save (perfect ninth), and Clint Barmes(notes) continues to produce in the No. 2 slot (4-0-2-2). Ryan Ludwick(notes) took another collar and is now 4-for-35 since returning from his hamstring injury.

Say what you want about Fernando Rodney(notes) but when he's asked to work in a save situation, he's perfect. The hat-sliding righty now has 11 straight conversions after setting the White Sox down Monday afternoon; Alexei Ramirez(notes) stroked a one-out single but the game ended on Jermaine Dye's(notes) double-play ball. Miguel Cabrera(notes) (hamstring) was healthy enough to play but came out for a ninth-inning pinch runner. Brandon Inge(notes) (4-1-2-2) got the game-winning hit and continues to look like the catcher value of the season; now that we're nine weeks in, trust what your eyes tell you.

A trifecta of New England updates to pass along from Wonderland Boston: David Ortiz(notes) passed his eye test with no problems; he'll get some eye drops but he's still got 20-20 vision. There's no structural damage in Jacoby Ellsbury's(notes) shoulder so consider him day-to-day. John Smoltz(notes) should be with the Red Sox shortly, but the team might skip his turn now and again, wanting him to be a factor into the fall.

Speed Round: Texas closer Frank Francisco(notes) is considered a game-time decision for Monday, according to the Dallas Morning News. … Evan Longoria(notes) (hamstring) is back in the lineup for Monday's series finale at New York. … Not that you want to mess with the Rangers starting pitching, but Brandon McCarthy(notes) has a stress fracture in his right shoulder and is headed to the DL. … Edwin Encarnacion(notes) (wrist) has hit a setback and is scheduled to have an MRI. Jerry Hairston Jr.(notes) is probably the winner if Encarnacion can't come back quickly, even as he's not technically a third baseman by trade. … Coco Crisp(notes) (shoulder) should be able to play Tuesday according to the Kansas City Star. … If you want to read about the worst slump of Jay Bruce's(notes) career, we direct you to the Reds official site. Johnny Fever paid $57 for Bruce back in March but he's regretting it now.

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