Ivan Pineyro, P
Age: 23 (9/29/1991)
How acquired—Traded by the Nationals for OF Scott Harrison on July 8, 2013.
Tennessee Smokies, Southern League, AA (11 G, 0-4, 5.55 ERA, 48.2 IP, 23 BB, 41 K, 1.66 WHIP);
Mesa Cubs, Arizona Rookie League, Rehab Stint (4 G, 0-2, 5.56 ERA, 11.1 IP, 2 BB, 9 K, 1.50 WHIP)
Prior to Cubs
Pineyro made his pro debut in the Dominican Summer League in 2011 after signing as a free agent with the Washington Nationals. He went 4-6 with a 2.20 ERA in 14 starts, throwing 69.2 innings with 73 K. Pineyro missed the start of 2012 after suffering a broken jaw when he was hit by a line drive during spring training. He made his season and stateside debut on June 21 in the Gulf Coast League fanning seven in 4.1 shutout innings. He pitched in five GCL games (22.2 IP, 23K, 0.88 WHIP) before earning a promotion to the New York-Penn League. He started eight games for Auburn but his numbers weren’t as impressive, allowing 49 hits in 34.1 innings with 27 punchouts and a 5.50 ERA in the short-season league. In 2013, he was assigned to Class A Hagerstown out of spring training and made 13 starts for the Suns, including seven innings of shutout ball on May 23 against Lexington and fanned a season-high ten the next time he faced Lexington in 5.1 innings. Pineyro threw 66 innings with 65 K, 17 BB, a WHIP of 1.12 and was named a South Atlantic League All-Star. He was promoted to Potomac in mid-June and allowed five runs on eight hits in his high A debut. He tossed seven innings of shutout ball for his first HIgh A win on July 4 and was traded to the Cubs four days later.
The right-hander earned a win in his Cubs debut, tossing 5.1 shutout innings against Jupiter. Pineyro established himself as one of the Cubs top pitching prospects displaying a nasty change-up in his eight starts for Daytona, going 3-1 with a 3.40 ERA in 45 innings and showed pinpoint command, surrendering nine walks. In the FSL finals, Pineyro worked seven shutout innings with seven strikeouts and a walk, earning the win in Game 2. In his third professional season, Pineyro threw a career-high 125.2 innings with 111K.
Pineyro took a loss in his AA debut April 6 vs. Pensacola (4 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 3K) and while his numbers were solid, struggled with his command, issuing 17 walks in 35 IP. After giving up six runs on May 10, Pineyro went on the disabled list with a strained forearm but the injury didn’t require surgery, and he was sent to Mesa to rehab. He finally returned to action on July 22 and made four rehab appearances, working 11 innings before he was sent back to Tennessee. The Dominican native made four more starts for the Smokies but had trouble getting hitters out, allowing 21 hits and 16 earned runs in 13.2 innings. Pineyro got back in track during winter ball, first in Arizona and then back in his home country. Pineyro made seven appearances in the Arizona Fall League (13.2 IP, 11 H, 4 BB, 16 K, .208 BAA, 1.98 ERA) and then made four starts in the Dominican Winter League for Estrellas (13.2 IP, 13 H, 6 BB, 14 K, .250 BAA, 1.32 ERA).
A big season in 2014 may have landed Pineyro on the Cubs 40-man roster but the arm injury left him unclaimed in the major league phase of the Rule 5 draft and he’s likely headed back to Tennessee for the start of the season. Despite the injury, he’s earned a trip to AAA but due to the backlog of starters, will be able to get quality innings in AA and should end the year in Des Moines. Pineyro can still make a bid for MLB rotation but will need to have a good year, stay healthy, and show he can miss bats at the upper levels. Pineyro’s fastball sits in the low 90s and his best pitch when he’s effective, is his change-up. He also throws a curve.