Twins Extension Candidate: Michael Pineda
Image courtesy of © Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY SportsMichael Pineda
2020 Stats (5 games): 3.38 ERA, 1.20 WHIP, 130 ERA+, 2.22 FIP, 0.4 WAR
Current Contract (Signed thru 2021, 2 years/$20 million)
Michael Pineda’s time in Minnesota has certainly been turbulent. He was recovering from Tommy John surgery when the team signed him so that cost him a season and then he was suspended for using a diuretic. Still, he will only be 32-years old next season and the Twins need pitching depth moving forward. He seems like the most natural person to extend a contract to this winter.
Pros of Extending Now
Few know what the free agent market will look like this winter and there is even less certainty about next off-season. Minnesota has a certain comfort level with Pineda after negotiating two different contracts. Pineda is never going to be a front-line starter, but he provides tremendous value as a middle of the rotation arm with up-side. The Twins could work through an extension now to add some certainty to the rotation moving forward. Especially with Jose Berrios only having two years left of team control.
Cons of Extending Now
Pineda will be 32 for the entire 2021 campaign and he has already missed multiple professional seasons due to arm issues. The Twins could wait out this season, judge his performance, and decide about his long-term future. This would allow multiple teams to be in on the bidding process, but Minnesota would know him better than other teams and be able to make a smart financial decision. He has only pitched part of two seasons in a Twins uniform so there certainly can be some question marks about his performance moving forward.
There seem to be a couple different routes for the Twins to pursue when it comes to Pineda and a lot comes down to what the player and his agent view as his value. It seems natural for the Twins to want to continue their current contract situation with Pineda being offered 2-year, $20 million deals ever other off-season. However, he might want to cash in with a bigger payday that pushes him out of the Twins financial picture.
How much would you give Pineda in an extension? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.
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