As far as I’m concerned, the greatest thing Bill Simmons ever gave us was the Reggie Cleveland All-Stars. With that in mind, Michael Pineda made me say, “Wow, he’s Dominican?” I would’ve went Italian. I probably would’ve known he wasn’t Italian if I saw he was six-five. You put my Italian grandfather on my shoulders and we’re lucky to be six-five. Ay, now where’s the broads?! Pineda was the Mariners’ Minor League Pitcher of the Year. His overall numbers were 3.36 ERA in 139 1/3 IP with only 34 walks vs. 154 Ks. His ERA at Triple-A looks wonky on first glance (4.76), but his FIP was more than a run lower, so I wouldn’t worry about it. On Stephen’s Top 50 Fantasy Baseball Prospects, he’s at number 15. In 2009, he had elbow problems, but that appears to be receding into his rear view. Since the M’s will have room in the rotation for this young righty, there’s an opportunity for him to see time in the rotation in 2011 right from jump street. So what can we expect of Michael Pineda in 2011 fantasy baseball?
Around an 8 K/9, a high 3 ERA and a solid WHIP. As his K/BB illustrates, his control has been sharp in the minors, which makes him slightly less risky than the usual rookie pitcher. There’s still risk though. In the minors, his ground balls have dropped and his fly balls have risen (literally!). In Safeco, that’s not a huge hindrance, but he’s not going to pitch every game at home. I’m guessing if we see him in the rotation right out of Spring Training, he’s going to be skipped here and there later in the year to save his arm. I’d put his line at 5-6/3.90/1.20/105 in 120 IP. In single year leagues, I’ll put on the broken record. I can have any girl in Japan, cause I’m a healthy, hundred and fifty nine pound American boy….. Wait, wrong broken record. Oh, here it is. Rookie pitchers can roofie you. Like when you’re in a brothel, you have to balance risk and reward for your staff. Definitely worth pursuing aggressively in keepers. You are looking at a guy that will be a solid fantasy contributor as soon as 2012 at the ripe age of 23.