In January 2012 the New York Yankees completed a blockbuster trade that would send catching prospect Jesus Montero to the Seattle Mariners in exchange for the young, hard throwing Michael Pineda. After going 9-10 with a 3.74 ERA in Seattle and making an All-Star appearance in his rookie year, the Yankees believed Pineda would solidify their rotation for years to come. Unfortunately, it’s been over a year and Pineda is yet to make an appearance for the Bronx Bombers due to a torn labrum in his right shoulder.
After major surgery at the start of the 2012 season, Pineda finally made his first rehab start for the Class A Tampa Yankees. Pineda threw 68 pitches, 42 being strikes, while also topping out his fastball at an impressive 95 mph. Pineda finished the game allowing just two hits, one walk and stuck out four in 4.1 innings of work.
Pineda told reporters that his shoulder felt strong and that he had very good control of the fastball, an encouraging sign for Yankee fans as well as fantasy owners. Yankees GM Brian Cashman stated that Pineda will need at least five or six more rehab starts before the Yankees consider calling him up to the big leagues.
Regardless, this is extremely exciting news for Yankees fans as they have been anxiously waiting to see the talented young right-hander in pinstripes. As for fantasy owners, Pineda could be back on the Yankees before the All Star break and could have loads of upside if you take a risk on him.