Pineda averaged 93 mph today; close to official rehab assignment

Five Years Later: The 2008 Draft
Thursday Night Open Thread

Via Joel Sherman & Andy McCullough: Right-hander Michael Pineda averaged 93 mph during today’s five-inning Extended Spring Training start according to team officials. I would take that with a grain of salt considering the source. Sherman says the plan is for Pineda to make one more ExST outing next week before going out on an official 30-day rehab assignment. The team will eventually decide if he is big league ready or in need of more Triple-A time.

Meanwhile, the Mariners demoted Jesus Montero to Triple-A today according to Ryan Divish. He hasn’t hit a lick since the trade, producing a miserable .252/.293/.377 (86 wRC+) line with 18 homers in 663 plate appearances to go along with awful defense behind the plate. Seattle is apparently going to work him out at first base in the minors, which is probably long overdue. This trade remains firmly in lose-lose territory. What a spectacular mess.

Five Years Later: The 2008 Draft
Thursday Night Open Thread
  • Algernon Blackwood

    Maybe we can trade him back now.

  • Preston

    They might be slightly exaggerating the MPH but I would doubt they’re lying too much. He is going to pitch in a minor league game soon and the velo hawks will be out in force. If he wasn’t getting a healthy reading on the radar I think they would probably stay silent, they don’t have to say anything.

    • WSAnalyst

      Agree. Not sure that there’s much incentive to lie. What do they gain? Guns might be a little hot but that’s the case throughout minors.

      • Laz

        Agree. Doubt they would go out and say he is firing 93 if he is only 88, that is just getting expectations too high. Unless he is being traded there is no incentive to talk him up that much.

  • Daniel

    Mike, Who is the unreliable source we need to take with a grain of salt? Any plans for a post in the future about who you guys consider to be the most reliable and least asinine beat reporters?

    • Mike Axisa

      It’s not the reporters, it’s the Yankees. Can’t trust a thing they say about their prospects.

      • vicki

        maxisa, don’t talk to dummies.

  • hogsmog

    I’m still optimistic on this one. Pineda’s had success in the show before; we know that if he can get to 100%, he can contribute in a meaningful way even if he only replicates 2011. This seems very possible given the type of surgery he had, and the fact that he’s progressed in lockstep with his rehab schedule.

    On the other hand, Montero has never had sustained success in the big leagues; we don’t know if it’s something he’s even capable of.

  • trr

    I don’t know…I think there’s more hype than anything else regarding Pineda. Most of his cred seems to be built on one 3 month run…

    • LK

      His rookie year was better than any season Phil Hughes has ever had. It was .5 less fWAR than Kuroda last year in ~50 fewer innings, and .3 less fWAR than Pettitte’s 2009 in ~25 fewer innings.

      Whether or not he can get back to pre-injury form is a huge question, but if he does he’ll be a big upgrade.

    • WSAnalyst

      What more are you looking for? Has one MLB season. Peripherals were consistently good across all months. Was a top prospect going into that season. He is not Clayton Kershaw no.

      • Cool Lester Smooth

        True. Kershaw was worse in every category as a rookie.

    • RetroRob

      I don’t think it was hype at all. He was considered a top prospect with a great arm before he threw a pitch in the majors. Then all he did was have a heck of a rookie season.

      The Mariners were bringing him a long a similar development path as King Felix, monitoring his innings. Dave Cameron also did a good analysis of his rookie year showing that his first half and second half were basically similar, outside of the reduced innings.

      I’ll take 2011 Pineda. There is no arm in the Yankee system as good as Pineda was. What he is now is the question.

      Hype? Some might say that is Montero, still waiting for his three months.

    • Bo Knows

      It wasn’t a 3 month run though, the only thing that changed was his era, Pineda actually improved most of his peripheral stats in the 2nd half.

    • qwerty

      Which is why you never trade your biggest bargaining chip for a rookie! This was classic Cashman attempting out to out clever another GM.

      • vicki

        cashman won, guy.

  •!/del.pittman?__user=673841799 Del Pittman

    Would love to see if his mechanics are new and improved. Hopefully.

  • Eddard

    At least for us it’s been a loss due to injury, not ineffectiveness. In Seattle’s case it’s a loss because Montero just isn’t any good. He’ll never be an every day big league catcher. Just goes to show you how far off those prospect rankings can be.

    • MannyGeee

      That seems unfair…

      He is what we thought he was: a big bat with no real position and ‘focus’ problems. Before him, have you ever heard of an up and coming player being ‘bored with’ the process of becoming what every (American) kid dreams of being?

      We all loved what Montero was supposed to become, and he’s still only 23. Shit, I did a lot of things at 23 I would kill to get a redo on. He’s got that chance… So lets not crucify the Jesus (see what I did there?) quite yet, the book is far from written on him.

  • Jerry

    Disagree… I think Pineda is going to be excellent… I loved this trade from the start…

    • The Big City of Dreams

      Disagree… I think Pineda is going to be excellent


      Putting a lot of pressure on the kid

      • MannyGeee

        If he’s at home reading what at a bunch of armchair GMs (myself included) are saying about him on the Webisphere, and that is putting pressure on him, then he should probably smash his iPad.

  • vin

    I just can’t believe the Mariners have ruined the bats of Montero, Smoak and Ackley. They all had some warts prior to the big leagues, but the fact that all of them regressed so horribly has got to be incredibly alarming to their ownership.

    • YanksFanInBeantown

      Seriously. Elite hitting prospects really don’t bust all that often. This is pretty clearly an organizational issue.

      For everyone bitching about Yankees pitching prospects getting injured, just be happy that they haven’t irreparably damaged them like the Mariners have.

      (Except for Joba, of course)

  • crawdaddy

    Why? Is it just them you don’t trust about their prospects or you suspect other teams too?

    • Mike Axisa

      Assume you’re talking to me. It’s every team, they all talk up their prospects and young players. Hard to believe them.

      • CountryClub

        This would be a very high profile case to be exaggerating. I’m not saying it’s not possible, but it would take a lot of balls on their part to say 93 when he’s really throwing 90.

        • qwerty

          Well, I suppose it wouldn’t be too hard to say he “averaged” 93 instead of topping out at 93, but I’m uncertain where the incentive is.

      • crawdaddy

        Right, I was on my iPad beforehand. Anyhow, thanks for answering the question. However with the controversy about Pineda’s velocity last year, it would be ballsy for the Yankees to lie about it now.

      • Bo Knows

        I really doubt they are over estimating too much, the guy had shoulder surgery, they could have easily said he was at 91 and people still would have been impressed concerning how shoulder surgery is usually seen as a kiss of death and the damnation of pitchers to throwing in the 80’s.

        I honestly think he might be in that 92-93 mph range right now, the guy was still hitting 91-92 when he wrecked the shoulder, it being repaired and healed had to have added a few ticks

  • Holy Ghost

    It seems like only yesterday that some Yankee fans had Montero pegged to be a future Hall of Famer

    • Nedro

      LOL You’re citing bleacherreport. LOL.

      • MannyGeee

        He could have easily quoted RAB comments threads circa September 2011 and got the same conclusion

        • mustang (The Has Been & Wannabes Bunch 2013)


      • fin

        LOL there were people on this board comparing him to Miguel Cabrera. It was insane prospect love on here.

        • mustang (The Has Been & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

          One even said Babe Ruth.

          That tells you something right there.

        • Nedro

          Hey I was there man, I bought my son a Jesus Is Coming t shirt.

          But bleacherreport.

    • qwerty

      That always happens, although I was never part of that fan club. I was excited about montero as a prospect, but I wasn’t particularly excited about his stats in AAA.

  • RetroRob

    It’s not reached a point where I wouldn’t trade Pineda for Montero. It’s not a question of me believing Pineda will make it all the way back. It’s not a greater concern over what’s wrong with Montero’s bat, and he needs the bat to not just be solid, but way above average to deliver value, because it’s not coming from his glove.

    This trade serves as just the lastest reminder of why baseball is damn difficult to predict.

    • RetroRob

      It’s me times two.

      I must have clicked reply while still editing. Or there are two of me.

      • vicki

        legit you doesn’t need an editor.

    • mustang (The Has Been & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

      “why baseball is damn difficult to predict.”


  • RetroRob

    I’ve almost now reached a point where I wouldn’t trade Pineda back for Montero. It’s not a question of me believing Pineda will make it all the way back. It’s now a greater concern over what’s wrong with Montero’s bat. He needs his bat to produce not just solid numbers, but way above average to deliver value, because it’s not coming from his glove.

    This trade serves as just the lastest reminder of why baseball is damn difficult to predict.

    • Dale Mohorcic

      You kist can’t predict baseball, Suzyn (sic).

      • Dale Mohorcic

        *just. stupid autocorrect. what the hell is “kist?”

        • jim p

          The feature should be called “autoerror.”

        • vicki

          you said sic.

    • vicki

      also, what took you so long?

  • fin

    I liked this trade from the day it happened. That’s when I thought Montero would be a good hitter. The Yankees had no where to play Montero. It was clear they had determined that he was not a major league catcher, first base is occupied for years and they needed the DH for a resting spot for old guys. So he was gona go.

    I liked the Pineda trade because they were getting a young pitcher, not a vet who would cost $20m a yr, in a year or 2 after the trade. I never blamed the Yankees for the trade, pitchers get hurt non stop, so it was bad luck. Now there is some hope of Pineda contributing, so I’m very happy.

  • MannyGeee

    OK…. I am getting irrationally excited about the Michael Pineda era. I always thought he could be a special player when he was in Seattle.

    That said, I expect him to stay in Scranton in June, and I would bet he gets 10 or more starts down there. It would not surprise me if he gets the September call up, as a situation where he “needs” to be in NY would be the result of a lot of bad shit happening.

    • KeithK

      I also think there’s a good chance he goes to SWB. If the other guys stay healthy and are pitching well then I would expect him to stay down at least long enough to push out free agency another year.

      This all assumes Pineda stays healthy and resumes being effective, of course.

      • Bo Knows

        I doubt there’s anyone that is actually going be higher on the pecking order when Pineda is ready. Phelps has been serviceable, but if Pineda is healthy and ready I would send Phelps to the bullpen. Of course, I want an extra year of team control, so he’ll need to be optioned at least a week or so.

  • Tom T

    I respect Mike’s realistic point of view, but in this trade I suspect he and the majority of baseball people would take the Yankees’ side right now.

  • mustang (The Has Been & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

    It’s easy to understand why Mike takes anything the Yankees say about their prospect with a grain of salt. He like so many here fell for the all bullshit the Yankees put out on Montero even to the point of ignoring some real clear signs about the Yankees true intentions. However I don’t really see a reason for them to lie about Pineda unless they were thinking of trade him, which is highly unlikely.

    About the trade overall I don’t think that there is a clear-cut winner however I do think the Yankees have a leg up. Yes, Pineda is coming of injury but if reports are true and he can return back form he does have some MLB success under his belt. This is not the case with Montero for all we know he may never be able to adjust to MLB.

    • Bo Knows

      After a certain point you have to start looking at the parent club, Montero hit in the minors, he hit very well.

      The Mariners have been consistently rated one of the worst offenses in baseball for years. This is despite the fact they have gotten some very talented prospects with a history of demolishing minor league competition. Ackley, Smoak, Montero were among the highest rated prospects at some point, logic dictates they would be at least serviceable but none of them are that. Hell, fact is they all regressed into players with no discipline, swinging at everything and being beyond bad. The players definitely share some of the blame, but I’m also looking at that teams hitting coaches, because they obviously suck. When is the last time the Mariners produced a hitter that actually hasn’t sucked deer $h!t…..Arod?

      • mustang(The Has Been & Wannabes Bunch 2013)

        I have to agree I been following Montero and I think that Seattle has done a poor job with his development. Sending Montero down and moving him to first be one of few right things they done.
        I wish the kid the best.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    Who gives a shit? He is a player on the New York Yankees. I don’t care how we got him. You root for him to be best fucking Yankee he can be.

  • http://RiverAveBlues Don

    Why is 93 so great? When he was throwing 93 back in spring training 2012, everyone seemed shocked by the loss of velocity.

    • Cool Lester Smooth

      Because he tore his labrum last year and he isn’t even on his rehab assignment yet.

    • The Doctor

      Then he was sitting 88-91 and topping out at 93. He’s reportedly already hit 95 and was sitting 93 today. That’s certainly better than before, which is even better considering he’s coming off of a surgery some pitchers never come back from.

      • Cool Lester Smooth

        The only pitcher who hasn’t come back from this surgery perfectly fine is Wade Miller, who had thrown several hundred more innings in the MLB than Pineda has in his entire professional career.

  • vicki

    ninja wins.

  • Wayne

    Will Pineda change his delivery his mechanics are what got him hurt in the first place in my eyes. Such a bad delivery!!

    • Bo Knows

      what got him hurt was trying to force himself to throw harder when he wasn’t conditioned or had the arm strength yet.

      • Cool Lester Smooth

        Yeah, the only issue with his mechanics is his elbow, not his shoulder.