Remember the excitement that was Harvey Day?
Or the thrill you felt when it was Thor’s turn to take the mound? Well, whatever the complete opposite of that was, is exactly how I felt every time Rafael Montero came in to pitch for the Mets.
Montero is the man of a thousand chances. We’ve seen him sent back and forth so many times between Las Vegas and New York. I bet his frequent flier miles are spectacular. Just when Mets fans think we’ve seen the last of him, an injury brings him back to the starting rotation.
However, in Montero’s last three starts he seems to be trending in the right direction. Which now begs the question: Has he finally hit his stride? Or is this just a temporary string of good starts before we see his lack of control rear it’s ugly head once again?
Forever the optimist, I’d like to think this will be his turning point. He’s posting a 2.85 ERA since August 30th, which was by far one of the best starts of his career. Montero went 8 1/3 innings against the Reds, struck out 8 batters, and got the 2-0 shutout victory.
Montero’s struggles have mostly come due to his lack of command and the number of walks he tends to give up. And while his command has been improving over these past three starts, he still has a 100:57 strikeout-to-walk ratio. If he can keep some of these walks down in the last few starts of the year, as well as continue to win games, it wouldn’t be completely out of this world that he makes a case for a starting rotation spot in 2018. Especially since Zack Wheeler and Steven Matz only seem to stay healthy for a month or two at a time.
I know most would shudder at the thought of Montero being the 5th starter. I feel weird typing it out myself. But hey, if it doesn’t work out, there’s always Las Vegas.