Fantasy Baseball IMPACT Of Taijuan Walker (SP) Arizona Diamondbacks Injury
FANTASY Baseball IMPACT IF TAIJUAN WALKER HAS A SERIOUS INJURY AND GOES ON DL
As of Sunday April 15, 2018
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Taijuan Walker (SP Arizona Diamondbacks) left the game on April 14 after 2 innings with right forearm tightness. This is usually not a good sign and a MRI will follow most likely tomorrow to see if there is any permanent damage. If Taijuan Walker goes on the DL for any extended period of time, how will the Arizona Diamondbacks fill Walker’s spot in the rotation. Shelby Miller (SP Arizona Diamondbacks) is currently on the DL until late June at the minimum coming off Tommy John surgery. The Diamondbacks could turn to an old fill-in starter option Randall Delgado who the Diamondbacks are grooming for a long relief role in the minors as Delgado is currently on the DL with an oblique injury. Delgado is a weak option and definitely not a long term solution if Taijuan Walker is out for an extended period of time.
The longer term option might be one of Arizona’s top pitching prospects…Jon Duplantier (SP Arizona Diamondbacks). Unfortunately, Duplantier is suffering from a hamstring injury himself and is out until April 21. Duplantier established himself as the top pitching prospect in Arizona last season after having a 1.39 ERA and 165:42 K:BB ratio in just 136 innings in Low-A Kane County and High-A Visailia while only allowing 91 hits. I could be jumping the gun here but Duplantier’s path to the Show seems imminent and could happen as early as this year. Taijuan Walker’s injury might speed up the process. Jon Duplantier wouldn’t be the 1st pitcher to be called up without even reaching the AAA minor league level. Joey Lucchesi (SP San Diego Padres) never pitched above AA and look how well he’s adjusted to major league hitting shutting out the Colorado Rockies in his last 2 starts accumulating 15 K’s as well.
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Jon Duplantier was a 3rd round pick in 2016 from Rice University and is 23 years old. Despite his statistical dominance in the minors, Duplantier was handled carefully due to some history of elbow and shoulder issues. His fastball varies from 90 to 97 mph but he has excellent secondary pitches. Duplantier’s curveball, slider, and changeup are outstanding. Like so many starting pitchers nowadays, Duplantier’s durability is Arizona’s only concern. Duplantier was projected to come up in late 2018 but if Taijuan Walker’s forearm injury proves to be serious, we could see Jon Duplantier earlier than expected dawning a new Arizona Diamondbacks uniform.