Much of the talk of New York Yankees camp has been Michael Pineda’s velocity, or lack thereof. The right-handed starter was expected to become a fixture in the Yankees rotation for years to come following his acquisition this offseason. However, Pineda’s struggles have put him on the Yankees rotation bubble, and now it appears he’s certain to start the season either on the disabled list or in the minor leagues.
Following yesterday’s ugly spring training start, the Yankees have announced that Pineda has complained of soreness in his right shoulder. Because he is experiencing soreness, Pineda is set to undergo an MRI today to evaluate the damage.
Last year in his rookie season with the Seattle Mariners, Pineda logged 171 innings while posting an ERA and WHIP of 3.74 and 1.099. The 22-year-old impressed with his 9.1 SO/9 and 2.9 BB/9, earning an All-Star appearance and Rookie of the Year consideration.
Even so, the Mariners tabbed Pineda expendable and traded him to the Yankees for highly touted hitter Jesus Montero. Trades involving top young talent are few and far between, and many questioned the Mariners decision to deal Pineda.
Now, with his drop-off in velocity and shoulder soreness, maybe the Mariners knew something others didn’t. Following his horrendous outing against the Phillies, in which he surrendered six runs over his 2 2/3 innings of work, Pineda reported soreness in his throwing shoulder.
Pineda was already fighting for a spot in the Yankees rotation, but it now appears the right-hander is a lock to start the season on the DL or in the minors. Without Pineda, New York’s starting five will likely consist of C.C. Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Freddy Garcia, Phil Hughes and Ivan Nova.
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