Hector Noesi Rumors
Today the Yankees and Mariners announced the trade that will send right-handers Michael Pineda and Jose Campos to New York for catcher/DH Jesus Montero and right-hander Hector Noesi. Here are some links for Monday, starting with a couple of notes related to the blockbuster swap...
- In this week’s edition of Ask BA, Jim Callis of Baseball America explains that he prefers Rangers right-hander Yu Darvish over Pineda in the long term. However, Pineda isn't far behind Darvish in Callis’ estimation.
- One scout says Noesi could be the "surprise piece" for the Mariners, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (on Twitter).
- Jorge Posada will discuss his retirement at a press conference at Yankee Stadium tomorrow morning, the Yankees announced. News broke a couple of weeks ago that the long time backstop has decided to call it a career.
- Pita Rona, a 17-year-old New Zealand native, signed with the Orioles, TVNZ reports. Director of international operations David Stockstill and GM Dan Duquette confirmed the move. New Zealand has yet to produce a Major League player.
- The White Sox announced that they promoted former player and manager Buddy Bell to the role of VP, player development and special assignments.
- The first financial proposals to buy the Dodgers arrived over the weekend and the soft deadline for submissions is today, Yahoo’s Tim Brown tweets.
The Mariners needed hitting, the Yankees needed pitching. The two teams addressed each other's needs in a blockbuster trade of young stars, as right-handers Michael Pineda and Jose Campos will go to the Bronx in exchange for catcher/DH Jesus Montero and righty Hector Noesi. Both teams confirmed the trade this afternoon.
The Yankees re-signed C.C. Sabathia and Freddy Garcia this winter, but those moves amounted to just standing pat with a rotation that (after Sabathia) contained several question marks. In Pineda, however, the Yankees now have one of the top young arms in the game and one who has already showed he can perform at the Major League level. Pineda (pictured) posted a 3.74 ERA, a 3.15 K/BB ratio and a 9.1 K/9 rate in 28 starts last season, earning an All-Star appearance and a fifth-place finish in the AL Rookie Of The Year vote. Pineda recently turned 23 and is under club control through 2016.
Campos, 19, is another intriguing young arm. John Sickels of Minor League Ball ranked Campos as the fifth-best prospect in Seattle's system going into 2012, noting that while Campos' secondary pitches need some polish, "his upside is very high, he throws hard, and already throws strikes." Campos is coming off a dominant campaign in low Class-A ball in 2011, posting a 2.32 ERA and a whopping 6.54 K/BB in 14 starts. Joel Sherman of the New York Post hears from an NL executive that if Campos was in this year's amateur draft, "he is [a] no-doubt top-10 pick" (Twitter link).
Montero was a top-four prospect in both 2010 and 2011 according to Baseball America and the 22-year-old showed why when he posted a .996 OPS in 69 September plate appearances. Montero was drafted as a catcher but questions about his defensive capabilities had several pundits projecting his long-term future to be at designated hitter or first base. In New York, these spots will be blocked by Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez for the next several seasons, but the bat-starved Mariners have plenty of room in the lineup. Montero immediately projects as Seattle's probable #3 hitter, splitting time between DH and catcher, and it's easy to see Montero hitting behind Dustin Ackley for years to come.
Montero was very nearly a Mariner in July 2010, as he headlined a prospect package the Yankees were ready to send to Seattle for Cliff Lee. The M's, however, pulled out of that trade and ended up dealing Lee to the Rangers. Yankees management was reportedly upset that the Mariners pulled out of the deal at the last minute, but whatever hard feelings existed between the two clubs clearly weren't enough to keep them from doing business 18 months later.
Noesi appeared in 30 games for New York last season (two of them starts), posting a 4.47 ERA and a 2.05 K/BB ratio. Noesi turns 25 later this month and amassed impressive numbers over six seasons in the Yankee farm system. Noesi should get a shot at filling Pineda's rotation spot in Seattle and could blossom at pitcher-friendly Safeco Field.
Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com was the first to announce the trade as official, with MLB.com's Greg Johns adding Campos and Noesi's involvement. ESPN's Jerry Crasnick first heard of a "significant trade" involving a "young impact hitter" coming to the Mariners earlier today, and Larry Stone of the Seattle Times was the first to cite Pineda and Montero in the deal, as he had heard "rumblings in that direction."
Photo courtesy of Icon SMI.
It's not every day that two of baseball's best young stars are swapped for each other, but the Mariners and Yankees pulled off just such a deal today, as Jesus Montero and Hector Noesi went to Seattle in exchange for Michael Pineda and Jose Campos. Here is some of the early reaction to this stunning trade, plus some information on how the deal came together...
- "The risk for both clubs is low. The reward for both clubs is outstanding. This could be a transformational deal that will have fans of both clubs buzzing about for a long time," writes MLB.com's Bernie Pleskoff.
- Replacing pitching via minor leaguers or the free agent market is far easier than attracting top-caliber hitters in Seattle, notes MLB.com's Greg Johns.
- Mike Salk of ESPN 710 Radio in Seattle outlines the reasons why he "loves" the deal for the Mariners. Also from Salk (on Twitter), he hears from "a non-M's baseball guy" who believes Noesi is a better long-term option than Pineda.
- The trade makes the Yankees the favorites in the AL East, writes Scott Miller of CBSSports.com. Miller talks to two scouts who rave about the Yankees' sudden surplus of young pitching that also includes Dellin Betances and Manny Banuelos.
- Dave Cameron of the U.S.S. Mariner blog sees Montero as developing into a Carlos Lee-type of hitter who is productive but not quite a superstar. Cameron thinks the deal will look better for the Mariners if they were to sign a free agent starter like Roy Oswalt or Edwin Jackson, since then the team would have Montero's bat plus a pitcher that could match Pineda's production.
- Yankees GM Brian Cashman feels he took a "huge risk" with the trade, reports The Record's Bob Klapisch (via Twitter). "I gave up a ton (for Pineda)," Cashman said. "To me, Montero is Mike Piazza. He's Miguel Cabrera."
- "Some execs from other AL East teams believe Yankees just made an incredible trade," tweets ESPN's Buster Olney.
- The two teams were "talking for weeks" about the deal, reports Joel Sherman of the New York Post (Twitter link). Each side told the other that they had limited funds to address their needs.
- The Yankees initially tried to acquire Felix Hernandez from the Mariners, reports Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com (via Twitter) and were willing to offer a package that included Montero, Betances, Banuelos and more.
The Diamondbacks' asking price for Dan Haren still exceeds what most teams are willing to offer, as the Yankees and Tigers have balked at deals centered around Joba Chamberlain and Jacob Turner respectively. However, despite being on Haren's no-trade list, the Tigers are still in play since the right-hander is expected to strongly consider playing anywhere he has a chance to win. Those were the highlights of yesterday's Haren rumors, so let's move on to today's. Any new updates will show up at the top of the page throughout the day....
- SI's Jon Heyman tweets that in addition to Chamberlain, the Yankees are hesitant to part with pitchers Hector Noesi and Dellin Betances in a potential Haren trade.
- John Harper of the New York Daily News writes that the Yankees are under no pressure to trade for Haren and that any deal they make will be on their own terms. ESPN.com's Buster Olney (Insider required) agrees with Harper's assessment, noting that the Yanks would take on Haren's salary and give up "B-plus prospects" in a trade, but that they won't move their best prospects.
- If the Yankees were to acquire Haren, it would compromise their chances of signing Cliff Lee this winter, says Joel Sherman of the New York Post. Sherman also hears that the D'Backs would like to get their payroll down to about $60MM for 2011, further motivating them to move Haren now.