Michael Pineda Says He’s 100%; Wants To Start
Credit: Associated Press
New York Yankees’ pitcher Michael Pineda has not pitched in a regular season game since being traded from the Seattle Mariners before the 2012 season.
Pineda came into camp in 2012 quite overweight. He injured his shoulder before the end of Spring Training and required surgery. The rehab for shoulder surgery kept him out for all of 2012 and 2013.
Pineda made it to camp early this year and he looks to be in much better shape. He spoke with the NY Post’s Dan Martin and seems pretty confident that he can get back to the high level at which he competed in 2011. Pineda told Martin:
I’m going to compete for the rotation. I’m the same Michael Pineda. I’m 100 percent now and my body is in good shape.
In his rookie campaign, Pineda posted a 3.74 ERA with 173 strikeouts. His record wasn’t amazing (9-10), but his team was horrible (67-95) and didn’t score many runs. An ERA of 3.74 in a Yankees uniform will almost assure him of an above .500 record. Pineda is just 25 years old, and his youth is a big reason the Yankees have confidence in his ability to recover from major surgery.
Pineda spoke of his shoulder to Dan Martin of the NY Post about his shoulder:
I know I had the surgery and the injury to my shoulder, but I’m feeling stronger and the shoulder is feeling good
Pineda hopes to join the Yankees rotation that is projected to include C.C. Sabathia, Hiroki Kuroda, Masohiro Tanaka and Ivan Nova.
The Yankees got lucky when they sort of remained in contention for the second AL Wild Card spot into September last year with their pieced together line up. They are hoping that many of their players have fully recovered and play to their full potential. They need bounce back years from guys like Derek Jeter, Mark Teixera and Michael Pineda.
The Yankees know full well that their free agent acquisitions are only a small piece if they are to have any success in the AL East. They need to stay healthy. Their playoff hopes depend on it.
I think that if Pineda truly is 100%, he is the Yanks’ best option in their fifth starter spot. We’ll see how it pans out as his competition starts this weekend with Yankee’s Spring Training in Tampa, FL.