2013 Cubs Prospects in Review: Ivan Pineyro

Ivan Pineyro was signed by the Washington Nationals in 2010…for just $16,000. I'm assuming he probably had some instructs before his 2011 FRk debut in the Washington Dominican Summer League. Starting exclusively, Pineyro dominated in his ~70 innings in 2011 as a 19-year old, and was uneven in 2012 (but dealt with a line drive to the jaw in Extended Spring Training, so he lost a good chuck of time). Ivan started 2013 in the Sally League, where he earned a midseason promotion to Potomac, the Nationals A+ affiliate, and was traded to the Cubs for Scott Hairston and a PTBNL shortly thereafter.

Performance

After the Cubs acquired Ivan, he had a pretty nice half-season. He pitched in 8 games, starting them all, and got 45 total innings (just over 5.5 innings per start). He struck out 20.5% of his batters and walked only 4.9%, which is a great ratio, and combined that with a reasonable .316 BABIP. Put it all together, and he had a 2.89 FIP for Daytona (A+), and was generally seen as one of the better pitchers on that rotation. He pitched 125.2 innings this season, which is another great sign. 

Scouting

There isn't a ton of tape on Ivan, since he hasn't pitched a ton of meaningful ball. Jonathan Mayo says he sits in the high 80s/low 90s, with a promising change and a change with some drop to it. 

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-UQ4bNU71A]

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F6Na5ufB29U]

I like his motion. The first thing that pops to me is that he doesn't look 6'1" or 200 pounds, but a bit shorter and lighter than that. I like the run on his pitches, and his changeup seems like it's really good for a minor-league offering. Far be it from me to put a grade on anything, but it looks like it'll probably play at the major league level. That's good, because he'll need a good weapon to play off his fastball, which doesn't look like anything special. The curveball was also pretty weak in this limited sample, but I didn't see nearly enough to really make a real judgement or anything.

Baseball America was slightly more charitable concerning his fastball than Mayo was:

He commands the strike zone at 90-93 mph while also throwing a solid-average changeup and fringy breaking ball. Pineyro impressed the Nationals with his quick recovery from a line drive to the face during 2012 extended spring training, showcasing his toughness and poise.

Outlook

Pineyro might stay in Daytona to start the year, but he'll see some time in Tennessee before the year is out barring a huge setback, either injury or stuff-related. If he can develop his breaking pitch, he's shown the durability and good changeup that profiles him at the back of a rotation, but it's a big if; A+ is light-years from the majors, and if throwing a curveball was easy, everyone would do it. All things considered, getting a lottery ticket with #3-4 upside is a great return for the picked-over corpse of Scott Hairston, even if there's little chance he makes it that far (there are a lot of scenarios that end with Pineyro's secondaries getting launched at Tennessee and never progressing past that level, or getting to Iowa and not having the fastball to get through 6 innings). If the rotation doesn't work out due to the lack of a curve, he's got as good a shot as anyone to end up as a fungible reliever, but there's no reason to start considering that for probably 2 years (one to work on a passable third offering, and another to flash that at AA and AAA). 

2013 Cubs Prospect Reviews

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