Montero had the Cubs guessing, thanks to his change-up

Mets rookie Rafael Montero held the Cubs to one run and five hits over 7 1/3 innings on Sunday.

“No matter what happens here in a few days, certainly he’s got to be happy with the way he threw today and his confidence has got to be pretty high.” Terry Collins said when asked about Jacob deGrom‘s eventual return to the rotation, which will likely bump Montero back to Triple-A.


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Montero later said the key to his success Sunday was being able to throw his change-up for a strike.

“We had heard his change-up was outstanding, and today he showed it,” Collins said. “He showed great use of it, great location with it. I thought he pitched an outstanding game. It was really good for him to have a game up here where he knows he can be successful.”

Montero had struggled in four of his first five starts for the Mets, dating back to his first promotion earlier in the year.

Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer

This is the pitcher we had been hearing about spring training.

He’s short, so he has to work batters front and back and he was able to do that with his change-up Sunday. He’s not going to succeed going in and out. He stayed back, his delivery was consistent pitch to pitch, including when throwing from the stretch. He actually tossed three change-ups in a row at one point.

Interestingly, and I suppose not surprisingly considering his time in Vegas, Montero reminded me of Frank Viola today, at least in terms of how he used his change-up nearly a quarter of his pitches and kept hitters guessing at his fastball. The most impressive thing, though, is the stark difference and meaningful adjustment he made in just a few days since his last start. Nice work…




13 comments
herblehman
herblehman

If Dillon Gee continues to struggle, let's let Montero get some starts in September. The jury is definitely out on this kid - dominant one start and lit up the next - so it would be nice to see what we really have here. I don't think he has anything more to prove or disprove in Triple-A. I think Gee has enough of a body of work (and injury history) that five starts won't make much of a difference either way to his trade value.

Not4Nutten
Not4Nutten

I really enjoy watching this guy pitch, he reminds me a lot of Pedro, he should only pitch that well! Good Luck to him, with a little luck he just might surprise everybody!!!!!!!!

saxon
saxon

Get Kris Benson ? [AAA] Cubs stud...Put him in right field...Castro at SS and since they will trade Murph, put Wilmer the RBI machine at 2nd and he will be a fixture there producing for years and years...not days and days!! Make the trade work for both teams...

sell
sell

"he has to work batters front and back ... He’s not going to succeed going in and out. He stayed back"

Cerrone, what on earth are you talking about? Your commentary on Montero has consistently left most of us scratching our collective head.

Andrew Strum
Andrew Strum

I feel like I have a pretty good handle on baseball jargon but what does, "He’s short, so he has to work batters front and back and he was able to do that with his change-up Sunday. He’s not going to succeed going in and out." mean? It sounds like Matt is trying to sound like he knows what he's talking about and doesn't.

sarcastico
sarcastico

Granderson and Montero for Castro, sign the Cuban kid put him in right and then mix and match left until conforto is ready

CocoaBeachnut
CocoaBeachnut

Refreshing to see a Mets pitcher with control, command and a plan.

Jeff Robins
Jeff Robins

Great start and a real confidence builder. But if deGrom is ready to go Montero should head back to Las Vegas for the PCL playoffs. Might as well get him some playoff experience as opposed to going to the Mets.bullpen.

Jayson Love
Jayson Love

that was the montero i have seen.  Much more poise much more aggressive and unafraid of contact.  Too bad the Mets' offense is anemic

dtc942
dtc942

@Andrew Strum Strange, right?  His obsession with Montero's height has graduated from amusing to just plain weird.

Bob
Bob

@Andrew Strum He's been complaining about Montero's height since Spring Training. He probably used to tell his buddies that a guy like Pedro Martinez (5' 11'') and Greg Maddux (6' 1'') couldn't make it either.