Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Meet a Prospect: Jordan Montgomery

As you have read numerous times already on the blog this morning the New York Yankees are calling up left-handed starter to the Bronx to make his Major League debut here in just a few short hours. For whatever reason, even after his strong 2016 season and equally strong spring camp this season for the Yankees, many don’t know who Montgomery is, where he came from or what he brings to the table as the team’s fifth starter this season so that is why we do these special posts here on the blog. So without further ado let’s meet the Yankees new fifth starter, this afternoon’s starter and just the first step towards the future in Mr. Jordan Montgomery. Can you guys tell that I’m a wee bit excited for this one? This is Meet a Prospect: The Jordan Montgomery Edition.

Jordan Blackmon Montgomery was born on December 27, 1992 in South Carolina where he began his amateur baseball career. Montgomery attended Sumter High School in Sumter, South Carolina where he played for the school’s baseball team. As a senior there Montgomery earned the state’s player of the year which led him to continue his amateur career at the University of South Carolina after graduation. As a member of the Gamecocks baseball team Montgomery was named Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year once and was also named as a Freshman All-American. The New York Yankees had seen enough and after his freshman year the team made a very generous offer to the lefty after selecting him in the fourth round, 122nd overall, in the 2014 MLB Draft and the rest, as they say, is history as he signed for the $424,000 signing bonus.

In his first season alone Montgomery pitched for two Yankees minor league affiliates including the Gulf Coast Yankees and the Staten Island Yankees leading to his promotion to Low-A with the Charleston Riverdogs at the open of the 2015 campaign. Montgomery wasn’t long for Charleston though as he was quickly promoted to High-A Tampa with the Tampa Yankees where he finished his 2015 due to the organization trying to limit his workload a bit. The 2016 season opened with Montgomery getting his first taste of Double-A ball with the Trenton Thunder and the lefty did not disappoint. Montgomery finished the season in Triple-A opening up many eyes as he continues to get stronger and better the higher up he climbed the organizational ladder leading to him receiving an invitation to spring training here in 2017.

Not many outside The Greedy Pinstripes blog knew of or talked about Montgomery much before this spring training but by the end of it the southpaw made sure that everyone knew his name, especially those making the organizational and roster decisions for the team. Montgomery won the fifth starter competition out of spring when hardly anyone had him pegged as even a candidate for the spot and will make his MLB debut this afternoon in the Bronx against division rivals in the Tampa Bay Rays.

Montgomery brings a four-pitch mix with him to the Yankee Stadium mound this afternoon that includes a fastball, a changeup, a cutter and a curveball. Montgomery’s fastball sits around 94 MPH and he can touch 96 MPH or above when he really reaches back, a vast improvement from the 88-91 MPH he threw in college with South Carolina, which only helps keep his second pitch, his changeup, deceptive as ever. Montgomery has a clean, consistent and clean delivery which should lead to consistency, location, command and durability throughout his career. Stability. That’s what Jordan Montgomery is going to bring this Yankees staff this season and for years to come and I personally absolutely cannot wait to watch it unfold.

Congratulations on winning the spot Jordan and welcome to the team, the organization and most importantly welcome to the family. Now stop reading this and go bring us back to .500 with a victory!

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)