Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
Blog Entry

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

Posted on: January 13, 2012 9:40 pm
 
Their winter hibernation just ended. And just like that, the New York Yankees made themselves into AL East favorites.

Adding Michael Pineda from Seattle has all the earmarks of acquiring a young CC Sabathia or, ahem, Felix Hernandez -- the ace the Mariners wouldn't trade.

Adding Hiroki Kuroda on a one-year, $10 million deal adds the kind of rotation depth they could only dream of last summer -- and, presumably, a right-hander with more staying power than Bartolo Colon had.

"Wow," one scout said Friday night. "They've been laying in the weeds. They hadn't done anything."

Yes. Hadn't.

Though the Yankees gave up a consensus future star in young slugger-to-be Jesus Montero, exactly the kind of young bat the Mariners need and a great move for them, Pineda and Kuroda join CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova, Phil Hughes, A.J. Burnett and maybe even Freddy Garcia in giving the Yankees the talent, depth and clout their rotation needs to take them deep into October.

Just a few days after meeting with the representatives for free agent Edwin Jackson, the Yankees became the talk of the industry on what had been a slow Friday night with their stealth move for Pineda, who, at 22, already is within sight of becoming an ace.

"He's got that kind of stuff," a scout who spent part of last summer focusing on AL West clubs said Friday night. "If you wanted to be conservative, he's a No. 2. He's got velocity, he came up with a slider that got better and better last year and he throws strikes. When he gives up a home run or a hard-hit ball, it does not chase him out of the strike zone.

"He's got that rare combination of stuff and control. He's young, he's not afraid, he's big, he's still growing and he's got makeup. He's a prize.

"And the Yankees will have, what, five years of control over him? He's the kind of guy you build around. Holy cow."

The Mariners were worried about rushing him too quickly last summer when they installed him into their rotation coming out of spring training. He pretty much immediately showed them, no sweat.

By season's end, over 28 starts, he struck out 173 hitters while walking just 55 over 171 innings. His average fastball was clocked at 94.7 m.p.h., according to FanGraphs.

What's notable about that? The fastballs of only three other AL starters checked in higher: Texas' Alexi Ogando, Detroit's Justin Verlander and Tampa Bay's David Price.

Kuroda? He turns 37 next month. But he gave the Dodgers 202 innings in 2011, going 13-16 with a 3.07 ERA. He's a competitor with fierce pride.

"Solid No. 3," the scout said. "He throws strikes, he's got good stuff, a crisp fastball that's deceptive and he throws harder than people think. He's at 90 to 94 with sink down in the zone, a crisp breaking ball and a good split.

"He's got out pitches. I'd love to have Kuroda."

Now the Yankees do. And Pineda. And Sabathia and Nova and Hughes and Burnett. ...

And as they search for a hitter, for now, they've still got 6-8 right-hander Dellin Betances and lefty Manny Banuelos, who opened many eyes last spring.

"Hanging onto Betances and Banuelos [and with Pineda on board], they've got three young-gun studs who should pitch for them for a long time," the scout said. "And Nova's not that old and Hughes isn't that old.

"They've got the makings of a young, under-control staff."

Yeah, sure, why not? On a night on which the Yankees proved they're not sleeping through the winter, why not add to their opponents' misery just a little bit more?
Comments

Since: Mar 9, 2007
Posted on: January 14, 2012 11:29 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

Freddy Garcia / A.J. Burnett / Phil Hughes cage match for 5th starter spot.

Then when Betances and Banuelos come up, whoa.



Since: Nov 6, 2006
Posted on: January 14, 2012 11:03 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I fell off a camel once...



Since: Sep 1, 2011
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:55 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

How is Tex overrated? More like under rated.



Since: Mar 21, 2009
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:36 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

The NYY also have the greatest choke artist at 3rd base!! an old man at shortstop and the most overrated firstbaseman in the game(who couldnt hit sand if he fell off a camel).



Since: Dec 17, 2011
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:22 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I agree with a post below. On paper, these moves look great for the Yankees, but chamionships are not won on paper. You still have to play the games. Everyone picked Red Sox and Phillies and look what happened. I do have to say that Cashman and the rest of the scouts have done a great job the last 2 years while penny pinching. Yankees will almost certainly shore up the bullpen as well. Problem is Yankees still don't have clutch playoffs hitters and that may come back to hurt them.



Since: Mar 7, 2008
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:09 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I think the Yankees just got really good.  Damn.  But baseball is wierd.  Let's see how it plays out.  I thought Boston was legit last year, and the Phillies kind of pooped themselves, too.  I don't think I was alone in not predicting the Cards to win it all.



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:06 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I think this story should have been about the Mariners, not the Yankees. With this move, the Mariners will now have to good bats to surround Prince Fielder in the batting order. This move was solely to add a bat to the lineup to setup a move for Fielder. I Believe the M's have now moved into the most likely team to acquire Fielder.



I cant understand why anyone would go to Seattle to hit in THAT lineup and play in a division with the Angels and the Rangers to fight for 3rd place with Oakland. Maybe if they had a young studly #2 starter or something they'd be more appealing. You know, someone to slot behind Felix for the next decade. Maybe like a young CC or something like that. Well I can think of 1 reason and 1 reason only why Prince or any batter would go to Seattle...$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$   



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: January 14, 2012 10:01 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

Savvy ,you spend 10 million on a 37 year old pitcher and trade for a kid who pitched great at Safeco ,whos record was 1-4 in the second half ,look up savvy.

Still fans out there who think money should be factored into every Yankee move. The Yankees find $10 million in their couch cushions... 



Since: Sep 28, 2010
Posted on: January 14, 2012 9:37 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I think this story should have been about the Mariners, not the Yankees. With this move, the Mariners will now have to good bats to surround Prince Fielder in the batting order. This move was solely to add a bat to the lineup to setup a move for Fielder. I Believe the M's have now moved into the most likely team to acquire Fielder.



Since: Jan 7, 2007
Posted on: January 14, 2012 9:27 am
 

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

NOW THE YANKEES NEED TO MAKE A REALLY BIG MOVE. SIGN AND PUT CHAVEZ AT THIRD AND MOVE A-ROD TO DH. AS A DH, HOPEFULLY HE WILL STAY HEALTHY FOR THE SEASON. HUGHES MUST GO TO THE BULLPEN. CHECK OUT HIS STATS THERE THE PAST 2 YEARS. WITH THAT, BYE BYE JOBA. HE NEEDS TO BE TRADED. SORRY, I'LL SAVE THE REST FOR ANOTHER TIME.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com