Although he had not pitched in a MLB game since 2011 prior to the start of the 2014 season, former Seattle Mariners prospect and current New York Yankees starter Michael Pineda, could finally prove once and for all who won the trade between the Mariners and Yankees in 2012 when the teams swapped Pineda for catching prospect Jesus Montero, who was sent down to triple-A by the Mariners prior to the season.
Pineda, who finally looks healthy after struggling for two seasons with shoulder problems since being traded to New York, performed well in Spring Training making three starts, going 2-1 with a 1.20 ERA in 15 innings and added a 1.00 whip and a 9.6 K/9, which somewhat resembles what he is capable of. In his only full season in the big leagues with Seattle in 2011, he went 9-10 with a 3.74 ERA in 28 starts, pitching to a 1.09 WHIP and 9.1 K/9.
Pineda’s Spring Training performance helped him win the fifth starter role for the Yankees, and in his first start last week against the Toronto Blue Jays, he was very solid despite getting the loss, as he pitched six strong innings, giving up five hits and one run while striking out five and walking none.
Pineda makes his second start of the season tonight against the Boston Red Sox in the Bronx for the Yankees. He is currently available in 67 percent of ESPN fantasy leagues and 36 percent on Yahoo. He could end up a great streaming option in fantasy baseball tonight, although I recommend giving him one more start to prove he is back.
So, keep an eye on his performance because I anticipate he will be picked up quickly on the waiver wire if he has a strong game against the Red Sox’ gritty offense.