Young pitcher Michael Pineda offers glimpse of exciting future for Mariners

Discussion in 'Seattle Mariners' started by truebluefan, Mar 8, 2011.

  1. truebluefan

    truebluefan Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    "Spring training days like Monday are designed for dreaming.

    The A's, perhaps not wanting to give the Mariners any scouting opportunities, sent out a team largely comprised of players who will never see the major-league light of day in 2011.

    The Mariners, on the other hand, sent out their glittering ace, Felix Hernandez, followed by the Man Who Would Be King, Michael Pineda.

    It was hard not to envision a day in the future — perhaps the not-so-distant future, for the most ardent dreamers — when the Mariners might have not one, but two dominating pitchers in their rotation.

    Pineda is still raw, not yet two months past his 22nd birthday. Yet he exudes potential, from the huge frame to the electric stuff. Before the game, Jaime Navarro, the Mariners' new bullpen coach, dared to say what many were thinking Monday as Hernandez and Pineda were showcased back-to-back in Seattle's 6-3 victory at Phoenix Municipal Stadium.

    "You have Fifi (Hernandez) and you have Michael, who can become a great pitcher," Navarro said. "That will be beautiful to watch. That will be one of my best days, seeing those two guys together."

    Navarro, as much as anyone, has witnessed firsthand the growth and nurturing of Pineda since his signing out of the Dominican Republic in 2005 at age 16.

    Navarro was his pitching coach at Class A Wisconsin in 2008, Pineda's first year in the United States. They were together again in 2009 at High Desert in the Class A California League.

    When Pineda was elevated to Tacoma in 2010 after destroying Class AA competition (8-1, 2.22 earned-run average, 78 strikeouts in 77 innings for West Tennessee), Navarro — by then the Rainiers' pitching coach — witnessed Pineda's dazzling AAA debut as he blanked Salt Lake on one hit over six innings."

    Read more: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/larrystone/2014428564_stone08.html
     

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