The Mariners flirted with the idea of calling up top pitching prospect Michael Pineda multiple times this year to give him a taste of the major leagues in what has been a lost season in Seattle. They never pulled the trigger, though, and now it definitely won’t happen.
According to Larry Stone of the Seattle Times, the M’s decided Saturday to shut Pineda down for the rest of the season.
The 21-year-old began this year with Double-A West Tennessee and turned in a gorgeous 2.22 ERA and 1.09 WHIP over 13 starts. He was then promoted to Triple-A Tacoma, where he kept rolling to the tune of a 1.14 WHIP and 76/16 K/BB ratio over 62.1 frames.
The results have been fantastic at every level dating back to 2006 for Pineda but he’s thrown nearly 140 innings this year and registered only 47 total innings last season.
Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik made it a point to note Saturday that Pineda is going to be in the mix for a major league rotation spot in 2011.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.