Friday, June 20, 2014

Airbrushed Fridays: 2014 Topps #553

Let's all hop in the Hot Topps Time Machine.

Who is he? Michael Pineda is an interesting story. Plucked from the Dominican Republican at age 16 by the Mariners, he was an All-Star in his rookie season, virtually unheard of for a starting pitcher. He scuffled a bit towards the end of the season and then spent nearly two seasons recovering from a labrum tear. Now he might be best known for using excessive amounts of pine tar and practically begging someone to tell him he couldn't.

How did he get here? Pineda was dealt to the Yankees in one of those rare top prospect-for-top prospect trades. Seattle got Jesus Montero in return, but both sides didn't really know exactly what they were getting. In Montero, Seattle got a guy who can't play any kind of defense and who has kept himself off of the field for other reasons (drugs, food?, hitting) as well. Meanwhile, the Yankees got a quality starting pitcher who has yet to catch a break from the injury gods.

Repeat offender? No

Other versions of this card: None, but this Photoshop has been used before. In 2012. Here's the original source photo from 2011!

Airbrushed Score: 8

Comments: Well, this is what happens when a guy doesn't pitch for a long time. I've got an idea, though. Topps has 3 series of base cards. If they can't get a current photo out of a guy by their Series 2 deadline, why don't they hold him back for the Update Series? Is it that hard?

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