Michael Pineda impresses in his spring debut

(Photo courtesy of USA Today) Michael Pineda showed signs of what the Yankees hoped they traded for in 2012

(Photo courtesy of USA Today) Michael Pineda showed signs of what the Yankees hoped they traded for in 2012

Michael Pineda has finally showed the Yankees some signs of the former All-Star they traded for. Pineda, is competing for the fifth spot in the rotation and has been hampered by injuries since coming over from Seattle. He has yet to throw a pitch for the Yankees on the big league level, but that could change quickly if he continues to throw like this.

The most impressive feat of Pineda’s performance was his strikeout of Miguel Cabrera. Widely considered the best hitter in the game today, Cabrera was sent down swinging and looked clueless as to what was coming. Pineda used a mixture of sliders and curveballs to put the Triple Crown winner away, raising eyebrows from the crown along the way.

One of the biggest concerns since his acquisition was his issues returning to his former velocity. But on Friday, his fastball was clocked in the 91-93 mph range and his slider 79-82 mph, a near perfect 10 mph difference that you look for. All signs point to the return to Pineda’s earlier success if he can continue to throw like this. The Yankees just might walk away with a steal of a trade after all, considering what a bust Jesus Montero has become.

The Yankees want Pineda to win this job, as he has the greatest upside among his competition. He is up against David Phelps, Adam Warren and Vidal Nuno…not exactly Cy Young candidates in their own right. If he is able to win the job, this would also help the Yankees bullpen as some of these arms could be shifted over to add depth to the pen.

When asked about his performance Pineda was quoted as saying: “I showed Michael Pineda” Well, who doesn’t love an athlete that talks in the third person? He could prove to be a must hear interview if he keeps that talk up. Anyways, the Yankees and their fans hope he can keep this up the rest of the way.

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