Nuno eyeing a spot in Yankees rotation

Left-hander showed potential in injury-shortened campaign in 2013
02/27/2014 11:09 AM ET
By Doug Williams

Background: Vidal Nuño is a 26-year-old starting pitcher in the New York Yankees organization. Nuño has pitched for several different minor league teams since 2009, but 2013 was his first year in the big leagues. Throughout his career in the minors, Nuño had great stats no matter where he went, posting a 2.84 ERA overall and a record of 32-18.

2013 Season: A nagging oblique injury cut Nuño's rookie season short, and he was only able to appear in five games for the Yankees in 2013, starting three of them. He posted an ERA of just 2.25 and gave up only 16 hits in 20 Major-League innings.

Greatest Strength: Nuño's greatest strength is his control. He's a guy that doesn't blow hitters away, so he is forced to rely on his ability to locate. He averaged less than two walks per-nine innings during his career in the minor leagues, which is incredibly impressive. While he won't strike a lot of guys out, he isn't one to give away base runners either.

Greatest Weakness: Nuño's greatest weakness is his inexperience in the Majors. Last year would have been a great opportunity for him to get his reps and make a name for himself, but unfortunately he was unable to stay healthy. Nuño's minor league numbers -- and his short stint with the Yanks last season -- would go to show you that he is more than capable of getting big league hitters out, but he has never thrown even close to 200 innings in his career and the Yankees may not know if he's capable of it.

Prediction: Nuño may not be as sexy of an option as Michael Piñeda, but it's not impossible that Nuño wins the fifth spot in the rotation. The Yankees really like David Phelps in the bullpen, and if Piñeda gets hurt or doesn't look ready, there's a good chance Nuño would get the nod. He's a smart pitcher and is a guy that relies on control, and he's also succeeded pretty much everywhere he has pitched. 

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