When the New York Yankees acquired right-handed fireballer Michael Pineda from the Seattle Mariners for C/DH Jesus Montero, they probably weren’t expecting this. Pineda, 23, will be shut down for the rest of the 2012 season after receiving a bad diagnosis during his MRI today. In fact, he has a tear in his labrum that will require surgery on May 1st.
There was cause for concern after Michael Pineda had a putrid Spring Training start against the Philadelphia Phillies, and since then he was shut down by the Yankees. The staff won’t be hurting that much because they haven’t used Pineda all season – not to mention veteran left-hander Andy Pettitte will return soon enough – but the long-term ramifications of the injury could be even more of a black-eye on the controversial trade.
Pineda was an all-star for the Seattle Mariners last year, but ran out of gas towards the end, in which Seattle actually shut down the youngster at 171 innings. I can’t say I’m surprised by this news, or the fact Michael Pineda has arm issues. The way pitchers are these days – especially pitchers who are babied with innings counts and what not like Pineda – always have arm issues early.
Hopefully for the Yankees and Pineda, he recovers and dominates like Stephen Strasburg has this year. But no one really knows how a pitcher’s arm will react to major arm surgery. Now, granted, arm surgery hasn’t been the death sentence it once was. But for someone who relies heavily on his velocity to get outs like Michael Pineda does, it could be troublesome.
Now that this news if official, the Yankees can move on from that “what if” game with Pineda, and focus on fixing the rotation without him.