Cubs Reportedly Sign RHP Joel Pineiro to a Minor League Contract

According to a report out of Puerto Rico courtesy of Jesse Sanchez, the Cubs have signed RHP Joel Pineiro to a minor league contract. The report indicates Pineiro will report to Mesa and participate in extended spring training for 10 days before going to Triple-A Iowa to start his season.

The Cubs were connected to Joel Pineiro several times during the off-season. Reports at the end of December indicated the Cubs were scouting his winter starts for Leones de Ponce.

Update 1:42pm CDT – The Cubs confirmed signing Joel Pineiro according to the Sun-Times.

Joel Pineiro underwent surgery on his right shoulder in June of 2012 and has not pitched in the majors since 2011. Pineiro was looking to sign a minor league contract with a team during the off-season that included a non-roster invite to Spring Training.

The 35-year old veteran right hander went 7-7 in 27 appearances, 24 starts for the Angels in 2011 with a 5.13 ERA and a 1.51 WHIP. Pineiro pitched in five games in the Orioles system in 2012 before undergoing shoulder surgery.

Dave Duncan turned around Pineiro’s career over the two-plus seasons he spent in St. Louis. Pineiro went 28-23 with 69 games, 68 starts, for the Cardinals in 2007-2009 with a 4.14 ERA and a 1.27 WHIP.

Theo Epstein signed Pineiro as a free agent in January of 2007 then flipped him to St. Louis at the deadline for minor league outfielder Sean Danielson and cash. Pineiro went 1-1 in 31 relief appearances for the eventual World Series Champs with a 5.03 ERA and a 1.62 WHIP.

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