The Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees completed a blockbuster deal tonight, involving two elite young talents. In exchange for sending outstanding offensive prospect Jesus Montero and right-hander Hector Noesi to the Mariners, the Yankees receive stud starting pitcher Michael Pineda and right-handed prospect Jose Campos.
Montero ranked as the top prospect in the Yankees system in my recent Top 15 rankings and he immediately becomes the top prospect in the Mariners system when that is published next week. A full scouting report on Montero can be found here.
In Noesi the Mariners get a potential back of the rotation starter that helps round out a rotation in need of some depth. He pitched 56.1 innings, mostly in relief, for the Yankees in 2011. His arsenal doesn’t wow anyone as his velocity tops out around 92 mph. His change-up is an above-average pitch and his curveball is below-average and needs tightening. He commands his fastball exceptionally well with the ability to paint to any part of the zone. His command and control ways should play better in Seattle’s enormous park than they do in the new Yankee Stadium.
The Yankees received Pineda who offers the potential of a number two starter and was in the running for American League Rookie of the Year honors until he slowed drastically in the second half of the season. He can park his fastball in the mid-90s with a dirty slider that misses bats consistently. He has a tendency to pitch up in the zone with his fastball which could cause problems if the ball gets up in the jet stream in New York.
The final player in the deal, right-hander Jose Campos was slated to be ranked seventh in my upcoming Mariners rankings and he immediately jumps into the Top 15 of the Yankees. Still just 19-years old Campos can push his fastball into the upper-90s, touching 98 mph with regularity, while sitting in the 92-94 mph range. His secondary pitches require significant work to be reliable offerings but he still has an extremely high ceiling.
In this trade both teams seemingly get what they need and the deal seems exceedingly fair for both sides. The Yankees get a pitcher they can slot behind CC Sabathia in the rotation for the next few years while also getting a high ceiling prospect for the future, while the Mariners get a big time bat and depth starter as they rebuild in a tough division.