Posted by Daniel Kahaner on 22nd February 2012
Everyone knew that the Yankees were going to trade top catching prospect Jesus Montero. But no one knew it would simply be a one for one swap.
Brian Cashman took a gamble in trading the mighty Montero for Michael Pineda, a good pitching prospect, but one who has yet to prove himself as Major League ready.
As a Mets fan, by nature it is hard for me to say anything positive about the Yankees, and I laughed when I first heard about this trade, thinking, “Wow, Cashman is a fool.” But after looking further into it, this may have been the move of the decade for the Yankees.
With a starting rotation that was less than stellar in the last few seasons, the Yankees have been looking to get younger with regards to starting pitching, as they have been letting Ivan Nova pitch more than expected. The Yankees kept this train of thought by trading for Pineda, the 6’8 290 pound right hander from the Mariners that makes CC Sabathia look like Steve Urkel.
The question is, who will have a bigger impact in 2012, Pineda on the mound for the Yankees? Or Montero at the dish for the Mariners? Montero showed massive power in his short stint with the Yankees, making the short porch in right field his friend rather quickly. It was a tough call to trade Montero at all due to his strong swing, but most fans knew it had to happen in order for the Yankees to upgrade their rotation (not to mention dumping AJ Burnett off on the Pirates).
The Yankees also are not lacking in the power department. With big bats like Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, and Alex Rodriguez holding down the heart of the order and Curtis Granderson providing a spark no matter where he is placed in the lineup, Brian Cashman felt that Montero was worth giving up for a good pitching prospect, and they got a good one.
Pineda has been clocked in the high 90’s, even topping 100 mph on his fastball several times. Many scouts say he has the potential to make an immediate impact this season for New York, and could even end up being the team’s number one starter by season’s end. CC Sabathia might have something to say about that, of course, but the fact that Pineda has a similar build and a very live fastball could create one of the best 1-2 pitching punches in the American League. With new free agent Hiroki Kuroda, Ivan Nova, and either Phil Hughes or Freddy Garcia behind them in the rotation, the Yankees pitching staff could be poised to help the Bronx Bombers to the World Series for the first time since 2009, when they defeated the Philadelphia Phillies for their 27th championship.
Overall, Pineda appears to be the real deal. Trading proven hitting talent for pitching is always a gamble, as pitching is never a sure thing in this day and age, but the Yankees appear to have reeled in an ace.
Tags: AJ Burnett, Alex Rodriguez, CC Sabathia, Curtis Granderson, Freddy Garcia, Hiroki Kuroda, Ivan Nova, Mark Teixeira, Michael Pineda, MLB, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Phil Hughes, Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners
Posted in A.J. Burnett, Alex Rodriguez, Blogger, CC Sabathia, MLB, Mark Teixeira, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Robinson Cano | No Comments »