Yankees and Mariners swap Jesus Montero and Michael Pineda; Yanks sign Hiroki Kuroda
The Yankees will ship catcher/designated hitter, Jesus Montero to Seattle along with starting pitcher Hector
Noesi in exchange for pitcher Michael Pineda and pitching prospect Jose Campos.
The Yankees will also reportedly sign starting pitcher Huroki Kuroda to a one-year deal worth about $10 million.
Montero is arguably the top hitting prospect in baseball but doesn't really have a position to play in the field, as he is seen as subpar defensively. He has often been compared to a past Mariners' great--designated hitter Edgar Martinez, thanks to his ability to hit for power to all fields. The Mariners are desperate for offense after finishing dead last in the league in runs scored last season.
Pineda went 9-10 with a 3.74 ERA and made the AL All-Star team last year, his rookie season. He and Kuroda fill voids in the Yankees' rotation that relied heavily on C.C. Sabathia last season.
With the additions of Pineda and Kuroda to go along with Sabathia, A.J. Burnett, Phil Hughes, Ivan Nova and Freddy Garcia, the Yankees now have seven pitchers. It's unclear now who the odd men out will be, but it will be interesting to see whether Burnett, despite his massive salary, keeps a spot in the rotation.
The Yankees had been uncharacteristically quiet all offseason, so this one big move shouldn't be surprising. The team clearly wanted to find a way to upgrade its starting rotation without expanding its payroll too far. In the 22-year-old Pineda they did just that.
The 36-year-old Kuroda went 13-16 with a 3.07 ERA for the Los Angeles Dodgers last season.
Montero has been brought up in trade rumors multiple times in the past, often centered around another Seattle starter, Felix Hernandez.
Campos went 5-5 with a 2.32 ERA as an 18 year old in Low-A last season. He has upside, but is years away from the big leagues.
Gut reaction: the Yankees got fleeced. A 3.74 ERA at Safeco Field is a 4.50 at Yankee Stadium. Montero has once-in-a-generation hitting potential (and hitters pan out far more often than pitchers). The kicker is throwing in Noesi, who actually pitched very well as a rookie for the Yankees last year, going 2-2 with a 4.47 ERA.
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