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?

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: January 16, 2012 12:59 am

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

I promise you...WHEN Pineda dials in his off speed pitches he WILL be the Yankees number 1 starter.  He WILL be a Cy Young contender every year for the next decade.  He is that good.  Scary good. 

You see, this is where I get a little confused.  How can anybody PROMISE that Pineda will be a Cy Young contender every year for a decade?  Don't get me wrong, I watched him pitched 5 or 6 times last season, a couple of those games against the Tigers and the kid appears to have some great stuff and loads of talent.  But the bottom line is he had 3 great months, the first 3 months I'm talking about.... that's about it.  He struggled a lot the last half of the season with only about half his starts being quality starts and a very high era over that stretch.  

Did major league hitters figure him out? Obviously.  Can or will he be able to make the necessary adjustments to pitch like he did the first half consistently?  Maybe, maybe not.  Nobody knows... what we do know is he's going from a big park to Yankee Stadium where home runs are extremely common and especially down the lines where home runs don't even make the warning track in some parks.

It's not that easy guys... pitching in the major leagues is brutal, it's very tough to do.  And pitching in such a great hitters park like they have in New York is even tougher then most other cities.  And I didn't even mention he goes from pitching in Seattle, a team that was going nowhere with basically zero for expectations to a city where the media and fans have chewed up and spit out talented veteran pitchers for years....

I'll reserve my judgement and for now just say this much, the Yankees traded one very talented kid for another. That's it.... 

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 11:25 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda


That's the past, nobody with the exception of you cares.


Seriously Brian?  No world series victories since 1970?  Huh?  Was this second post right after you shot up with some heroin?


Right.  But not until the Tigers knocked out your beloved Yankees Brian.  Gotta admit, that was pretty special.  Tigers are 2 for 2 the last 5 post seasons against the Yankees.   How does that feel Brian?  Ahhhhhhhhhhhh, don't answer that... we have a pretty good idea.


Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 11:19 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

Johnny boy,
Take a deep breath and relax.The HATE you have is not healthy.I understand that since you are a Sox's fan since 71 only 2 good years for the Sox's.You are just JEALOUS that the Sox's who choked again last year have done nothing but get a washed up BOBBY V.

Says the guy who hates almost every CBS member from almost every fan base in all sports.   The guy who argues with everybody he can on CBS, threatens to beat everybody up and challenges everybody to a fight every chance he gets.

And what the hell is a "Sox's" ?  Moron.... that goes right up there with "parley"


Since: Jan 19, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 5:13 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

brian08 ball i totally agree crawford was  a bad signing i was moaning when they did it i didnt even want gonzalez.  I am not a fan but a rooter i am not a fanatic i see things clearly.  The sox media wasnt hyping the signing nor hyping lester when he came up or bucholz  they were mentioned as top notch prospects.  Thats the difference the ny media which is fueled by the ny fan(actic) scream and yell about nonsense.  Montero is  a prospect  the fact that the yankees got what they got is in my eyes impressive in that pineda is much further along in proving himself than montero, but he still hasnt done much can you spell aj burnett or for that matter truth be said beckett.  Beckett one great reg season and two great post seasons   nothing else.  but he helped sox win a WS (and beat yanks in other).  that doesnt help us this yr.  thats not disloyalty that is reality.  hes proven not to be committed to staying in shape.  The yankees org., through their past history augmented by their committment to personal conduct have had  better success in cultivating free agent players to carry out the "yankee way". 

Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: January 15, 2012 3:29 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

@radfordrowdy...i agree.

People, this is a GREAT BASEBALL trade.  Each team filled a very bad need.  Yanks needed pitching, Mariners needed hitting(in a bad way).  Both teams had a hard time parting with their "prize" players, as well as fans.     

I promise you...WHEN Pineda dials in his off speed pitches he WILL be the Yankees number 1 starter.  He WILL be a Cy Young contender every year for the next decade.  He is that good.  Scary good. 

As a Mariner fan it was very difficult to watch him go, it will be even more difficult to watch him in pinstripes.  As a Mariner fan we are "suppose" to hate the Yankees.    &nb

Since: Mar 23, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 2:07 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

Anyone talking shit about these moves, Yankees hatred or not is stupid. Kuroda is a good starter, will win some games, and Pineda is arguably one of the hottest young arms in baseball. If he wasn't in Seattle you would have heard a lot more about him. No one cares about Seattle on the east coast, just another example of east coast bias. If Pineda strides forward like he was expected to, the Yankees rotation is suddenly very, very good. Don't know if Nova duplicates last season, but with the improvements they have made he won't have to.

Since: Jul 24, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 1:18 pm

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

who the hell is stopping the yankees??   no one  this team could win 115 games this year  they are that damned good  but it wont mean a thing if we coninue to choke on offense in the playoffs    i could care less about the regular season  its over already  only thing i care abot is watching cc vs pujols  other than that it will be a cake walk  but come the playoffs.....well see what this team is made of by then

Since: Aug 3, 2011
Posted on: January 15, 2012 12:44 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jan 19, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 8:11 am

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

and when the season opens yank fans like brian8ball can stand captilizing the recital of past yankee successes.  Blyleven 280+ wins! 3000+ KOs wicked (im sorry bad adjective for yank fan)curveball  Colon former Cy young winner sabathia former cy young winner etc.  By the way brian8ball, i see your logo has a jet insignia please recite in capital letters all your championships division titles super bowls preseason wins thanksgivingday wins, wins after losing 10 games in a season, wins at shea with namath during the 70s. 43 years and counting  geez those numbers are ny ranger impressive for futility (1940! 1940!--remember that at the garden?)  Please, stop spouting off like an ignorant beligerent ny fan like one of these modern football players who after scoring a td act like total idiots, sit back watch the game and act like you've been there before.    

Since: Jan 19, 2009
Posted on: January 15, 2012 7:57 am

Savvy Yankees hit home run with Pineda, Kuroda

the good news for yankee fans is the traded jesus for a possible prophet.  jesus is all promise a creation by the yankee machine.  what has he done? he hit a little during a few months last year.  if i had a loaf of bread for every phenom that came down the mountain i'd opena bakery.   Mike vail ring a bell 25 game hitting streak  joe charbeneau  1979 or 80 AL ROY  how bout ROBERTO KELLY???  anybody remember him and all the yank fans screaming no we cant trade him NO! the yanks sent him to reds for paul oneill   how'd that work out? kelly was a lost soul while yanks got great ball player.  Its the typical yankee "the emperor" has no clothes syndrome, they preach these scrubs are gods until you get em on the field and they disrobe to they have no naked ability.

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