Pics from PSL: Rafael Montero’s live BP

Mets RHP prospect Rafael Montero pitched live batting practice today to two groups that consisted of Juan Lagares, Ruben Tejada, Eric Young Jr. and others…

Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer

He looked good. For me, the jury will remain out until I see him pitch against big-league hitters in a real big-league game. He has nasty stuff. They’re right, he does a terrific job moving the ball down and across the plate. He moves hitters feet, which is good to see. I get it. I see what everyone sees…


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The thing is, he’s a little guy (as professional baseball players go). He’s just 6-feet tall and 170 pounds. The ball flies from the mound on almost the same plane as the hitter’s hands. It’s all level. Ordinarily, this is bad. However, he gets a lot of spin and movement, he pegs each corner with precision, his ball sinks at will, and so you end up seeing lots of foul tips, bad contact and broken bats. It’s encouraging. However, again, I want to see how MLB hitters pick him up and how he adjusts before I totally cast judgment on if I think he’s the real deal and whether he’s destined to be a reliever or a starter…


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32 comments
lindro88
lindro88

Safe to say Matt isn't totally sold on Montero yet. Over under on how many times any writer on this blog uses that term is 1700

Tim Doggamania
Tim Doggamania

I love how matt acts like he knows what he is talking about.... its humorous

3and2
3and2

Greg Maddux on his rookie year was 6 foot and 150 lbs. I'm not saying he is the next Maddux, but he comes in a similar frame and  relies on his command as well. Montero's command is a very uncommon asset at such an young age (22). We better keep an eye on this guy.

Eddie_Dean
Eddie_Dean

"The thing is, he’s a little guy (as professional baseball players go). He’s just 6-feet tall and 170 pounds."

Pedro Martinez was 5'11", 170 lbs. AND he pitched in the middle of the steroid era. I'd say he turned out OK as a starter.

I get it, you like to see your pitchers 6'3" and north of 210 lbs generally. But it's not like you NEVER see a pitcher on the shorter/smaller side work out.

11gilkey
11gilkey

Cerrone's Analysis for any Mets pitching prospect who is hispanic is that they project to be a reliever. 

Avery Decker
Avery Decker

Honestly, from what I have heard and seen of Montero, he has many similar traits to Tim Lincecum. 

MikeTomlin
MikeTomlin

What is Mets Blog problem with this kid? They want to trade him for an average run of the mill shortstop like nick franklin yet this guy has been compared to a poor mans pedro martinez. He shouldnt go to the bullpen or be traded for an average major leaguer. he should be a big part of our future

hashburry
hashburry

Who cares about you passing judgment?  Go back and see how that judgment of other players has reflected their ability.  I guarantee there are a ton of Cowgills that you thought would be great for this team after watching them grind it out and show their "grit".

Billy Suede
Billy Suede

Get off the montero as reliever meme already!

Kevin VanTassell
Kevin VanTassell

We all will sit on pins and needles waiting for your assessment!

hankincolo
hankincolo

The big thing is movement. But, just wondering, what's his top speed? I agree with all the comparisons to Pedro, and Guidry. Not sure Billy Wags would work. He topped out at hi 90's. Haven't heard what this kid does when throws his hardest. Anybody know?  

BadContract
BadContract

Did he go from A to AAA in one season?

gloveman
gloveman

Pedro, and as well I think Roy Oswalt isn't any bigger either. 

John Paul Cullinane
John Paul Cullinane

"Rafeal Montero pitched live batting practice today to two groups that consisted of Juan Lagares, Ruben Tejada, Eric Young. Jr and others…"

...Might as well have been pitching against Helen Keller, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, and others...

hankincolo
hankincolo

Well, Pedro Martinez wasn't very big and he did just fine. PLUS, lots of big guys don't dominate either. Location, and movement, ultimately, we'll see if he's got it. I also can't forget that last ST David Wright singled him out for praise.  

drmetfan
drmetfan

And how did he look?

Montero is creating a nice buzz thus far in spring training. 

metfan8669
metfan8669

@3and2 - This is funny... The first thing I looked up when I read the blurb above was Greg Maddux.  And of course the idiotic points Matt makes are debunked.

All the rest of us aren't genius', we just have balls.  Everyone can wait and see and not make predictions.

Now Matt can say "I always thought he looked small."   Or if Montero succeeds he can say, "I always thought he had the right combination of pitching talent to be successful at the major league level." 

lindro88
lindro88

It's a dopey comment. Roy Osawalt, Maddox, Wagner, etc etc etc.

Kevin VanTassell
Kevin VanTassell

Aside from their size I don't think they have much in common. Have you ever seen Lincecum's pitching motion? He's like a human whip, where Montero has a much more controlled motion.

lindro88
lindro88

Franklin is not projected to be an average run of the mill SS. Other teams have good young players too.

Eddie_Dean
Eddie_Dean

@MikeTomlin To be fair, Franklin is still largely thought of as a prospect (just like Montero). He's only been in the league a year, and he's expected to be a lot more than "average" if/when he reaches his potential.

That said though, I wouldn't trade Montero for him. Mejia, yes, but not Montero.

hankincolo
hankincolo

@7up17togo Wondering, since you saw him, what's his top speed on his fastball? Please see above comment of mine. Thank you.

Alex Fustinoni
Alex Fustinoni

He's been creating a nice bizz for a few years now!!!  The kid is a great pitcher!! A stud! I hope they make the right decision on him and don't screw him up, or hand him off to another orginazation, 1) in the same division and league, 2) for an above average SS that's not gojng to be worth it in the long run!

lindro88
lindro88

Pedro also threw 98 mph. I do agree Cerone makes a fool of himself when he gives talent evaluations.

lindro88
lindro88

They seem to be total opposites. Lol.