Charity Begins At Home

Michael Pineda has had a setback in his shoulder rehabilitation and will see the Yankees’ team doctor—NY Times Story.

Beyond his visit to take a deeper look at his ailing shoulder, Pineda’s next step with the Yankees—barring surgery—is for the club to say he’ll rest and maybe be able to pitch in a few “show me” games in September as a mop-up man.

I wouldn’t expect to see him in 2012.

The Yankees’ development of pitchers is like the North Korean space program.

In essence, the Yankees gave away Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi to the Mariners and Jack Zduriencik. For those keeping score, they’re the same Mariners and Zduriencik that the Yankees insisted they would never deal with again after the double-dealing in the Cliff Lee trade when the Yankees thought they had an agreement and Zduriencik used their offer to extract what he felt was a larger haul from the Rangers.

Not only did the Yankees go back on that edict, but they lavished two gifts on the Mariners for Pineda (on the disabled list and not coming off anytime soon) and the exalted Jose Campos who the team is desperately trying to push as the “key” to the trade.

No matter how gaudy his stats are, I don’t want to hear how scouts are raving about a 19-year-old in A-ball, especially one that’s pitching for the Yankees’ organization under this regime—a regime that has shown no propensity to building pitchers; in fact, under GM Brian Cashman, they’ve systematically destroyed every top starting pitching prospect that’s come along. The Yankees seem to function as if, by rite of tribal sacrifice and the tossing of valuable, cheap young arms into the volcano of Yankees’ sacrosanct rules of protection, they’ll curry favor from the Baseball Gods in the form of championships.

If they’re clinging to the propaganda that they’re glad to have Pineda and liked his stuff, facts are repeatedly getting in the way. The didn’t like Pineda’s stuff. After they acquired him, Cashman made statements indicative of someone taking a chance on a young pitcher. They were concerned about his second half decline (attributed to fatigue) and his secondary pitches.

You can bet that they were also worried about his psyche and dealing with New York.

Why did they trade for him if they felt this way? And why give up Montero and Noesi to do it?

A pitcher about whom such negatives are leaked—as a self-defense mechanism or slip of the tongue—isn’t one that you surrender two top prospects to get. That both Montero and Noesi had reached their minor league ceiling and were on the cusp of making it to the big leagues to stay makes it worse. A pitcher who’s thought of as the Yankees did Pineda is the kind you draft as a project or sign as an amateur free agent and hope he develops. But the Yankees dropped Pineda into their cauldron of expectations and are wondering why he’s melting.

The way the Yankees are absolved after the fact for their pitching idiocies is astounding.

After Carl Pavano stymied the Yankees earlier this week, none other than Mike Francesa decreed that the Yankees weren’t to blame of Pavano’s failed tenure in the Bronx.

“He’s a good pitchuh!!” Francesa said.

I don’t remember anyone ever blaming the Yankees for Pavano. If they hadn’t signed him to that contract, the Red Sox, Tigers and Mariners were prepared to. It didn’t work out and has no connection to defending or maligning their subsequent decisions.

They are to blame for this growing folly of Pineda; of Phil Hughes being on the precipice of a demotion to the bullpen or bandied about as part of a trade; of Joba Chamberlain’s utter failure.

Are your expecting more with Dellin Betances? Manny Banuelos? Campos?

If you are, you should stop.

They gave away two players they could’ve either used themselves or traded to fill another need. If they were intent on a donation to a needy organization, they could’ve sent Montero and Noesi to the Mets.

Charity begins at home.

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  1. #1 by Dave Wakeman on April 22, 2012 - 4:40 pm

    Obviously you should have had some fun pawing with Joel Sherman, but he is a noted serf to the crown, so what more would you expect from his article in this morning’s Post about the Yankees and Pineda.

    I’m sure at the end of the season, someone will come along and save Pineda from the Yankees and he will return to the pitcher he was with the Mariners and then the apologists will roll out the ‘couldn’t handle the expectations,’ or ‘didn’t have the mental strength,’ or ‘wasn’t a Yankee,’ or some other garbage to keep the focus off the fact that you can’t baby these guys forever and expect them to develop into workhorses.

    • #2 by admin on April 22, 2012 - 5:53 pm

      They’re not trading Pineda. No way, no how. They can’t. He won’t have any value after this season and after giving up Montero and Noesi, there’s no possible way to get a tenth of that value now. They’ll keep him and hope, hope, hope that he recovers.

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