It’s been awhile since the last Smackdown. The epic beating put on AJ Mass (I should have done another after his Joel Pineiro debacle) has put many experts on notice. Al Melchoir from CBS avoided MDS. Erik Hahmann from Bloomberg Sports disappeared into the crowd when he heard my theme music. It may have taken the Roto Professor a full week to respond and Russell Martin hurt himself in the meantime, but at least he stepped up to defend his questionable stuff.

[Smackdown!] at

About that Russell Martin injury: per [Fanball]

Contrary to a report from earlier today, Russell Martin’s strain in his lower abdominal/groin area is worse than originally thought and likely to keep him out the next four to six weeks, according to the L.A. Times’ Dylan Hernandez.

Our View: Hernandez cites manager Joe Torre as his source, so we’ll trust him on this one. This definitely puts a big detour in Martin’s attempt to bounce back from last season’s disappointing campaign, as there now appears to be little chance that he’ll be on the field by Opening Day. Look for Brad Ausmus to take over the starting catcher duties until Martin heals, with A.J. Price assuming the backup role.

He should only miss two weeks as the season starts in about four weeks. This isn’t horrible. He will still hit double digits in HR and SB while hitting .280; he’s still a top 12 Catcher. This doesn’t affect my position against Eric’s opinion. I will drop Martin from the 5 spot in my Catcher ranks, but he’s still Crocodile Tiered up with Montero, Posada, Napoli.