Season Preview Part II: Wildcard

21 Mar

As said in Breakout Candidate – Ivan Nova, it is my favorite post so far of RAB’s take on 2014 Season Preview. Today I am going to talk about part 1 of my 2nd favorite RAB’s season preview: Wildcard.

Now for the kicker: we have no idea what to expect out of Pineda this summer. He looks good now, but how will he look facing actual big leaguers every fifth day? What happens once he get 50 or 100 or 150 innings under his belt? Can he hold his stuff for 100+ pitches per start? These are all questions we can’t answer. Remember, the Yankees said they expected Pineda back last June. That didn’t work out. They can’t count on him for anything. Whatever he provides has to be treated as gravy.

And yet, if the season started today, I’m pretty sure Pineda would be the fifth starter. He’d have to be, right? He’s healthy and throwing well enough, plus he has the highest ceiling of the fifth starter candidates by frickin’ far. Actually, forget about ceiling. Pineda might be the best pitcher for the 2014 season out of the lot, never mind 2015 and beyond. I also think there’s a “let’s finally get something out of this trade” line of thinking as well. That’s not necessarily a good thing, but I do think that mentality exists.

Even though he’s on a staff with an unknown in Masahiro Tanaka and the enigmatic Ivan Nova, Pineda is the biggest wildcard in the rotation heading into 2014. Probably on the entire roster, really. He could be a non-factor like the last two seasons or he could be their best pitcher. Well, maybe not. That’s probably a stretch. Pineda could wind up being their second best starter though, legitimately too. Not in a “everyone else fell apart so he’s number two by default” way. That ability is there. It’s just unclear if we will actually see it this summer.

The Yankees sunk a ton of money into Tanaka this winter to be the future of their rotation, but that does not lessen Pineda’s importance to the franchise going forward. It would be a big blow to the organization if he is unable to re-establish himself this season. The farm system doesn’t have much impact pitching on the immediate horizon and free agency is becoming a less effective to build a roster with each passing year. Pineda can still be rotation solution in both the short and long-term, but until he shows he’s up to the task, the Yankees can’t count on him.

 

精。要。概。譯
不知道要怎樣期待Pineda的表現,他春訓看起來很好,但他每五天面對真正大聯盟打者時,表現會怎樣呢?如果他投了50、100或150局後呢?每場出賽能投100球以上嗎?這些都是我們目前無法回答的問題,所以洋基不能指望他,Pineda任何表現都算是額外加分。

話雖這樣說,如果球季今天開打,我相當確信Pineda會是第五號先發。他健康,投的不錯,再加上他的天花板比其他五號先發人選高太多,所以五號先發一定是他,不是嗎?其實先別說他的天花板,也別管2015年和以後,Pineda可能是2014年投手群中表現最好的。我也認為有種心態是“我們終於在這次*交易*(編按:Pineda-Montero交易)中得到些甚麼了”,雖然這並不一定是好事,但我確實認為那樣的心態存在。

即使Pineda和未知數的Tanaka以及謎樣的Nova一起在先發輪值上,Pineda仍是2014年先發輪值群中最大的萬用卡,也可能是整個球隊名單上的最大萬用卡。他可能跟過去兩年一樣不重要,也可能成為洋基最好的投手,雖然不太可能,因為那樣有點誇張,但Pineda可能成為球隊第二大投手,合理的第二號先發,而不是“每個人都表現不佳,所以內定為第二號投手”那樣。Pineda有能力,只是我們不清楚是否今年夏天能看見他的能力表現而以。

今年冬天洋基砸大手筆簽下Tanaka,成為未來的輪值,但這不減少Pineda對球隊未來的重要性。如果他本季無法重建生涯,對洋基來說是一大打擊。洋基農場沒有即刻可以上大聯盟的有力投手,而每一年利用自由球員來打造球隊名單的效力越來越不彰顯。不論是短期或長期,Pineda都是先發輪值的方程式,但直到他表現出有能力勝任前,洋基不能依靠他。

 

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