2013 Fantasy Baseball Sleeper: Michael Pineda

By Jeff Rosenberg
Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Here is a look back at the amazing rookie stats that SP Michael Pineda had in 2011 with the Seattle Mariners:

(9-10) 3.74 ERA, 1.10 WHIP, 173 Ks in 171.0 IP

After being acquired by the New York Yankees during the 2011-2012 off-season in a four-player exchange that sent C/DH Jesus Montero to Seattle, Pineda didn’t make a single appearance for the Yankees due to a torn labrum in his right shoulder. The original timetable for his return had him ready for 2013 Spring Training, but that has since been pushed back to June or July with the healing process taking longer than expected.

Will Pineda bring any value to your fantasy baseball squad in 2013?

With his new timetable being extended to the 2013 All-Star break, Pineda will certainly come back fully healthy for the Yankees when he returns. They’ve been extremely cautious every step of the way, and will continue to do so with their 24-year-old former rookie all-star, so there is not need to worry.

When Pineda returns, he will easily be the second best starter on the Yankees in terms of skill set, if he even semi-resembles his rookie campaign with the Mariners. The best part about it is that he’ll likely be pitching at the back end of the rotation.

While his experience in the MLB is limited to 2011, there’s no question as to why the Yankees were willing to give up what they did with Montero to acquire Pineda. His natural skills are fantastic, which is anchored by a filthy slider and a 95 mph fastball.

I’m completely for anyone drafting Pineda at the end of the draft, especially if your league has DL spots. If Pineda does go undrafted, you’ll certainly want him on your watch list immediately.

When Pineda returns, he will be fully healed and has major upside, as we certainly saw in 2011. Fantasy owners are looking at approximately 115-135 innings from a guy who averages more than one K/9.

If Pineda continues where he left off in 2011, he’ll be a great addition to your fantasy rotation for the second half. I’m betting he’ll be well worth it once he gets back on the diamond.

2013 Fantasy Prediction: (9-4) 3.85 ERA, 1.15 WHIP, 133 Ks in 125 IP


Follow me on Twitter: @Jewish_Jeff

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