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News-Herald Assistant Sports Editor Kevin Kleps doesn’t just write headlines and stories. He also checks on his fantasy sports teams. A lot. See if the moves and news from the world of sports affect your fantasy teams.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Fantasy baseball: Is this the end for Grady Sizemore?

One of the most unfortunate aspects of Grady Sizemore's latest injury is he had started hitting again.

Since July 9, he was 8-for-20 (a .400 average for the mathematically challenged) with five runs scored, two home runs and four RBI. A sure sign he was going well: Sizemore struck out "only" four times in that span.

The latter number is a far cry from his outrageous season average of one K per 3.1 at-bats (75 strikeouts in 232 at-bats).

Yes, we know Sizemore strikes out too much, but it should never be this much. In 2008 -- when he batted .268 with 33 homers, 90 RBI and 38 steals -- he fanned 130 times in 634 at-bats, a much more manageable rate of one K per 4.9 at-bats.

In addition to the Ks, a sure sign Sizemore hasn't been right physically for a while is his stolen-base total.

This season, he has none, giving the Indians outfielder four in 94 games since 2010. In that span, he is a .228 hitter who has 110 Ks in 360 at-bats (one per 3.3 at-bats).

Now he's back in Cleveland for more tests on his injured right knee. He told reporters the ailment fees similar to the left knee injury he suffered in 2010 -- the one that led to microfracture surgery.

The former fantasy stud missed nine games total from 2005 to '08. Since 2009, he has played 200 games in three years, and we shouldn't be surprised if that total doesn't increase at all in 2011.

If you own Sizemore in fantasy, you'll be lucky if he helps you even a little the rest of the season.

At this point, we have to wonder if he'll ever be a quality fantasy starter again, even at 28.

Considering the Indians hold an $8.5 million option on Sizemore's contract in 2012, he also might have played his last game for the Tribe.

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