Michael Pineda will need more than four weeks to recover from shoulder strain

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While throwing in a simulated game towards the end of April, Yankees starter Michael Pineda suffered a strain of the teres major muscle in his shoulder. The diagnosis purported Pineda would need three or four weeks to recover. Unfortunately for the Yankees, Pineda will need more than four weeks now, according to manager Joe Girardi, via Jorge Castillo of The Star-Ledger.

Pineda played catch at a distance of 60 feet on Saturday, Castillo writes, and everything went well, but Girardi is in no mood to rush the right-hander considering his four starts this season were his first for the Yankees since they acquired him in January 2012 in the Jesus Montero trade.

Pineda, of course, made headlines when he was caught on national television with pine tar on his neck, but when he wasn’t brazenly breaking baseball’s rules, he was pitching well for the Yankees. In four starts, the 25-year-old posted a 1.83 ERA with 15 strikeouts and three walks over 19 2/3 innings.

2017 Preview: The American League East

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For the past few weeks we’ve been previewing the 2017 season. Here, in handy one-stop-shopping form, is our package of previews from the American League East

Boston may have the most talent and, in Mookie Betts, the best player. The Yankees have the best farm system. Baltimore has all the dingers and the best closer. Toronto may have the best collection of heels, at least in the view of fans of the other AL East teams.  The Rays have the best . . . hmm. I’ll get back to you on that.

Anyway, here are our previews for the American League East:

Boston Red Sox
Toronto Blue Jays
Baltimore Orioles
New York Yankees
Tampa Bay Rays

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.