Montero was the top prospect in the Yankees system for a few years, and on multiple occasions General Manager Brian Cashman stated that he would not trade Montero for anyone other than an elite pitcher along the lines of Felix Hernandez or Cliff Lee.
These are five reasons why trading Montero will prove to be a mistake.
Trading away a top bat in Montero for a pitcher is always a very risky move, especially when the pitcher is not an established performer in the MLB.
Pineda had a very good rookie season, however he struggled in the second half of the season. While this may have just been fatigue catching up with the rookie, there is a possibility that the league started to figure out how he pitches.
Pineda was a top prospect in the baseball last season, ranking in at 13th overall on MLB.com's Top 50 Prospects. However, not all prospects pan out, so there is the possibility that Pineda could struggle.
Pineda is traveling from a relatively mediocre division in the AL West and moving into the toughest division in all of baseball, the AL East.
Pineda gathered a 3.74 ERA last season, and that number has a high probability of increasing this season after facing better offenses.
Pineda after giving up a home run.
Last season, Pineda pitched the vast majority of his games in the spacious Safeco Field, known to be a pitcher's ballpark. This season, he will be pitching in Yankee Stadium for most of his starts, and the new cathedral in the Bronx is known for giving up the long ball.
According to ESPN.com's MLB Park Factors, Safeco Field ranked 26th for in-park factor, whereas Yankee Stadium ranked sixth.
With a flyball percentage of 44.8, Pineda is likely to give up a few more home runs this season, which could lead to a higher ERA.
It is no secret that the New York Yankees lineup is starting to get older pretty quickly. Montero was expected to inject some youth into the lineup and be a mainstay for years to come.
Alex Rodriguez cannot be expected to provide offense towards the end of his contract, and someone is going to have to pick up and take over as that powerful slugger in the middle of the lineup.
That person was supposed to be Montero.
Of all of his abilities, it has always been stated that Montero's bat was his best asset. He is projected by many to be a full-time DH in his career, as he is not very solid defensively.
Losing that type of bat in the middle of your lineup is a difficult thing to overcome, even if you are the Yankees.
With the Yankees offense getting up there in age, it comes to light that it's been a while since there was a new face brought up from the minors to take a starting role.
The last mainstay to be brought up from the system was Brett Gardner back in 2008. Prior to that, it was Robinson Cano in 2005.
Montero was supposed to be the next big player to join the Yankees offense and help transition into a "new era" of Yankee baseball.
Now that he's gone, there isn't a clear cut prospect that will take the reins of the Yankee offense for a few years. The closest players that come to find are the top two offensive prospects for the Yankees—Gary Sanchez and Mason Williams—both of which are a few years out from the majors.