Pineda, the 24-year-old righty the Yankees acquired for Jesus Montero a year ago, has been throwing off flat ground since November following arthroscopic surgery from last April. The Yankees don’t expect him back until July at the earliest, but even without any setbacks that seems optimistic.
The Yankees traded for Pineda in Jan. 2012 after he had a rookie season with the Mariners where he had a 3.74 ERA, a 9.1 K/9, a 2.9 BB/9, and a 1.099 WHIP. He then reported to camp with the Yankees over weight and without his 96-97 mph fastball. After about a month in spring training he fought hard to regain that velocity, but ultimately injured his shoulder and cost himself at least a year and a half.
This is good news for Pineda. Really anytime he takes a step forward it’s a big deal. However, the recovery rate for pitchers coming off shoulder surgery is not encouraging. Like I said, the Yankees are hoping he comes back in July, but if he pitches at all in 2013 it would be huge.