Tag:Michael Pineda
Posted on: March 11, 2011 9:30 pm

3 up, 3 down for 3/11: Trumbo on fire

By Matt Snyder

Get the lame nickname people ready, because this dude's last name rhymes with a certain floppy-eared elephant from a Disney classic.

3 UP

Mark Trumbo, Angels. The 25-year-old slugger has been on fire this spring and Friday was no different. Trumbo doubled, homered, drove home four runs and scored two. He's now hitting .389 this spring with four home runs and 11 RBI. He's currently stuck behind Kendrys Morales (1B) and Bobby Abreu (DH) on the depth chart for the major-league roster, but at some point the team can't leave him behind. He's already torn Triple-A pitching to shreds (36 HR, 122 RBI, .945 OPS last year in 139 games). He's hit at every level, so maybe it's time he gets a shot in the majors -- lest he become another Brandon Wood

Carlos Pena, Cubs. He entered Friday just 2-17 with nary an extra-base hit, but a home run and RBI single likely took a bit of mental weight off the free agent signee's shoulders.

Jeremy Hellickson, Rays. The 23-year-old phenom hadn't yet pitched this spring, as he's been hampered with hamstring tightness. No matter, his first outing was spotless. Just a simple perfect inning, and he struck one batter out.


Jonathan Papelbon, Red Sox. Pretty solid meltdown for Paps, actually. He only got one out, but he walked three guys, hit one and allowed a hit. Before the book was closed, after his departure, three earned runs would be the final tally. Don't read anything into it. It's not uncommon for a guy to have poor command on March 11 and still be perfectly fine a month from now.

Gio Gonzalez, A's. Man, what a bum (please note sarcasm). Gonzalez hadn't yet allowed a run this spring. In fact, he hadn't even allowed a hit. So the outing Friday -- when he gave up four hits and one run -- may have looked poor by comparison, the conclusion is still a positive one.

Michael Pineda, Mariners. Man, what a bum, Part II. The burly Mariners prospect (he is 6-foot-7, 260 pounds) had not allowed a run through four spring innings prior to Friday. He gave up four hits and two runs in three innings to the Indians. But, like Gonzalez, the whole picture of his spring is a good one. He's still sporting a 2.57 ERA and opponents are only hitting .192 against him.

So, yeah, we picked two in "3 DOWN" that could have been positive ones. That's how we're deciding to roll today. Hey, it's Friday night.

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Posted on: March 3, 2011 9:54 am
Edited on: March 3, 2011 12:30 pm

Pepper: Perez's last chance?

Posted by C. Trent Rosecrans
Oliver Perez

For most established big leaguers, it's beyond idiotic to put much stock in many spring training results -- nobody's a star or scrub based solely on a game in the first week of March -- but Oliver Perez isn't the typical case.

The Mets pitcher has been hanging on to his roster spot by a three-year, $36-million thread for a while. In the last year of his ridiculous contract, the left-hander may be released if he "does not show significant improvement over Sunday's two-inning, four-run disappointment" today against the Cardinals, the New York Daily News' Andy Martino writes, citing two "major league sources familiar with the Mets' thinking."

Sunday, Perez was throwing an 84 mph fastball and struggled with his command. He was initially slated as a reliever for today's game, but he will instead start.

Manager Terry Collins said, "I'm quite sure he'll have another try after [Thursday]." But Martino says that may not be the case.

Since signing his big deal (any guess who his agent is?), Perez has gone 3-9 with a 6.81 ERA in 31 games. He made 14 starts in 2009 and seven last season before being put in the bullpen. He didn't pitch at all in June, and pitched just two games in August -- on the first day of the month and the next-to-last day of the month, and just one day in September.

There was talk the Mets would release him after the season, but they gave him one last try -- and that very last try could come today.

SPEAKING OF ALBATROSS CONTRACTS: Bruce Bochy told reporters Wednesday that Barry Zito's spot in the Giants' rotation is secure, despite a San Francisco Chronicle column citing a "source close to the team" as saying his job isn't safe.

General manager Brian Sabean also denied the story was a plant.

"Absolutely, unequivocally not," Sabean told Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News. "We have too much respect for players, and more so, I have a great relationship with Barry Zito. If things had gotten to that point, I would have talked to him directly, firsthand."

Zito walked five of the 13 batters he faced in his spring opener on Monday.

A.J. Burnett DOESN'T SUCK? So says, FOXSports.com's Ken Rosenthal.

In fact, Rosenthal points out the much-maligned Yankees' career numbers are pretty darn close to those of Boston's Josh Beckett, another former Marlin. The numbers Rosenthal uses are indeed close -- Burnett is 110-100 with a 3.99 ERA and an opponents' OPS of .701 in his career, while Beckett is 112-74, with a 3.96 ERA and .708 opponents' OPS.

The secret for Burnett to be successful, Rosenthal writes, is for Burnett to believe he can be successful. The Yankees certainly hope that's true.

WHO ISN'T? Speaking of disappointing Red Sox pitchers… John Lackey is "just tired" of talking about his 2010 season, he tells WEEI.com's Rob Bradford.

If I got $18 million to put up a 4.40 ERA. In his first season since coming over from the Angels, Lackey made 33 starts and put up a 14-11 record.

IT'S THE MONEY, STUPID: It's going to be difficult for either Dustin Ackley or Michael Pineda break camp with the Mariners, even if they earn a spot in spring, Larry Stone of the Seattle Times writes, because of the possible Super 2 status.

The Mariners may have to guess when to bring up their talented rookies in hope of not allowing them to reach arbitration eligibility early. To be safe, now most teams wait until June to bring up a heralded prospect. Remember Buster Posey? He was called up to stay last year on May 29.

Recently teams have guessed on when the Super 2 cutoff date would occur and lost on Tim Lincecum (2007) and Jay Bruce (2008) falling before the cutoff date. Teams worried about payroll, like the Mariners, are unlikely to take a gamble.

Ramon HernandezCITIZEN CATCHER: Congratulations to Reds catcher Ramon Hernandez, who took a couple of days off from Cincinnati's camp to go to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to take his United State citizenship test. Hernandez passed the test on Tuesday and will be sworn in at a later date.

"I already live here and I have my life here," Hernandez, a native of Venezuela, told Mark Sheldon of MLB.com. "My kids are U.S. citizens and my wife is a U.S. citizen. I'm the only one left. I feel like I've got to do it because I live here."

Hernandez celebrated with a double against the White Sox on Wednesday.

A PITCHER'S BEST FRIEND: A physicist writes an article on Baseball Prospectus stating that if the Diamondbacks used a humidor at Chase Field, they'd see a 37 percent drop in home runs. (Hat tip to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic)

THOSE AREN'T PILLOWS: The Planes, Trains and Automobiles worthy story of Mike Napoli's journey from the Angels to the Blue Jays to the Rangers from the Orange County Register's Bill Plunkett

SOMEONE IS INTERESTED IN THE METS: A group that includes Rays minority owner Randy Frankel and Entourage creator Doug Ellin, is interested in buying a share of the Mets, the New York Times reports.

Frankel would have to sell his share of the Rays, if approved.

THE DOCTOR IS AN IN-PATIENT: While the NFL seems to have someone on every Dancing With the Stars incarnation, MLB will be represented on Celebrity Rehab by former Mets ace Dwight Gooden.

Gooden, 46, will join Lindsay Lohan's dad and the kid from Baywatch on Dr. Drew's show, TMZ.com reports.

MMMM… GRAVY: A flow chart telling you which Major League Baseball team you should root for.

ANIMAL STYLE: For those non-Californians heading out to spring training in Arizona, here's a little help when it comes to the culinary hotspot that is In-N-Out. You've heard of the secret menu? Here's a look at every "secret" item on the menu.

For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Posted on: September 7, 2010 3:09 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2010 11:34 pm

Rays pitcher named top minor leaguer

Jeremy Hellickson Rays right-hander Jeremy Hellickson was named Baseball America's Minor League Player of the Year.

Hellickson went 6-1 with a  2.59 ERA in nine Triple-A starts. Nice and all, but actually worse than his four starts in the big leagues, where went 3-0 with a 2.05 ERA.

Hellickson was recalled on Sept. 1 when the rosters expanded and moved into the bullpen. He appeared in Saturday's game against the Orioles and gave up six hits and two runs in 1 2/3 innings.

However, he could find himself in the Rays' rotation soon, as Jeff Niemann had another bad outing on Monday against the Red Sox. He went just 1 2/3 inning, allowing six runs. Since coming back from a shoulder strain, he's gone 0-3 with a 20.03 ERA, giving up just 23 runs in 10 1/3 innings.

Despite the Rays' recent success with their farm system, the two Rays players who have won the award before Hellickson aren't part of the team's revival. One, Rocco Baldelli (2002) is back with the team after being sidelined by injuries through much of his career, but is nothing more than a bench player. The other, Delmon Young (2005) was traded to Minnesota before the Rays' magical 2008 season.

Jason Heyward won the award last season.

Although the article didn't have any other players considered, but others that had to be under consideration were Kansas City third baseman Mike Moustakas (.322/.369/.630 with 36 homers and 124 RBI), Philadelphia outfielder  Domonic Brown (.327/.391/.589 with 20 home runs and 68 RBI), Atlanta first baseman Freddie Freeman (.319/.378/.521 with 18 home runs and 87 RBI) and Seattle right-hander Michael Pineda (11-4, 3.36 ERA).

-- C. Trent Rosecrans

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Posted on: August 29, 2010 5:40 pm

Mariners shut down top pitching prospect

The Mariners are shutting down top pitching prospect Michael Pineda for the season after 139 1/3 innings.

"Our decision is that we think this is a prized product of ours and a guy we want to protect," general manager Jack Zdurencik said of the move.

His statement is rather obvious -- teams have been taking strong measures the last few years to protect young pitchers, and baseball will only get more aggressive about coralling the workload of young pitchers -- but even that is no guarantee of staying healthy as Stephen Strasburg can attest to.

Pineda struggled with elbow issues throughout 2009, tallying only 47 1/3 innings. Fully healthy to start 2010, Pineda threw 77 innings in Double-A, posting a 2.22 ERA. In a Triple-A promotion, the 21-year-old has a 4.76 ERA in 62 2/3 innings, whiffing 76 and walking 17. He's widely considered to be the best pitching prospect in the game.

"[There is] nothing physically wrong with him at all," Zdurencik assured. "It's just strictly an innings issue, and again, we figure the best thing to do for our best future and his best future is to stop it right now."

The Mariners are hopeful Pineda can show enough to begin the year in the Mariners' 2011 rotation, as Seattle fights to put a disastrous 2010 behind them.

"We think this guy has a chance to be a quality starter at the Major League level, and we think it's going to happen soon," Zduriencik said.

Seattle will have a wide-open rotation behind ace Felix Hernandez for Pineda to contend for. The play of Jason Vargas and Doug Fister should give the two near-secure spots, but past that, there are two spots available, and Pineda shouldn't have much trouble locking one up with the likes of David Pauley, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Luke French and possibly Erik Bedard as contenders.

-- Evan Brunell

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Category: MLB
Posted on: July 9, 2010 6:09 pm

M's do not call up prospect to replace Lee

The Mariners announced they will pitch right-handed reliever David Pauley on Friday night in place of the traded Cliff Lee. It was thought that they might call up prospect Michael Pineda, which would be counter to the go-slow approach they've had with Pineda (10-1, 2.25 between Double-A and Triple-A).

They might yet call up Pineda, who is starting for Triple-A Tacoma on Friday. Pauley has pitched in 12 major league games, nine with Boston and three this season with Seattle. This will be his first start for the Mariners.

-- David Andriesen
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Category: MLB
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