We learned tonight that Michael Pineda will have surgery on his right shoulder and will miss the entire 2012 season. Pineda suffered an anterior labral tear and will undergo surgery next week. Luckily for the Yanks, neither Pineda’s rotator cuff nor capsule was comprised.
Brian Cashman spent a copious amount of time with the media explaining the injury. Cashman’s vehemently stated that Pineda’s physical and injury history checked out before dealing slugger Jesus Montero to the Mariners. Seattle GM, Jack Zduriencik stated that he was ‘shocked’ to learn about Pineda’s injury.
On the surface, I don’t believe Seattle traded the Yanks damaged goods. It’s been well-documented that despite an overall poor showing in the second half of last season, Pineda’s average fastball velocity never dipped below 94.2 MPH. However, Pineda was struggling to break 92 MPH this spring and now we know why. It doesn’t help either that Pineda showed up to camp twenty pounds overweight, causing an obvious setback in his development.
It’s difficult to find a silver lining in this situation. If anything, Jose Campos, the second player the Yankees acquired in the deal, is 3-0 with a 1.23 ERA in Single A Charleston. The 19-year-old is obviously years away from making the big team, but we’ve heard he has a lot of upside. As for Pineda, we can only hope he has a successful surgery and regains the All-Star talent he showed last season.
For now, most of the naysayers will knock Cashman for giving up his prized prospect for the next ‘Mark Prior’. If anything, Cashman and the Yankees should have done their homework on Pineda’s workout habits. Showing up to camp overweight is never excusable and Pineda likely comprised his mechanics in order to generate more velocity. Now, the Yanks must move forward with their starting rotation and hope Andy Pettitte is ready to go. Speaking of Pettitte, he tossed six innings of three run ball tonight for the Trenton Thunder. Pettitte’s return will hopefully make Yankee fans forget about the failed Michael Pineda Year 1 experiment.