Saturday, June 2, 2018


While we are fully into prospect arrival season, a few names have come up to the majors of late that slipped through the cracks of the consciousness of the fantasy baseball community given their lack of name brand or pedigree in terms of not being a top pick.  Sort of like 25-year-old Oakland A's pitcher Frankie Montas whose 4.39 ERA and ugly 7.24 K/9 at Triple-A to begin the season were very shaky numbers considering the level.  Be that as it may, the A's had a rotation need due to injury and Montas was the guy they tabbed last week to make at least a spot start.  Well Montas nailed that first test as he pitched 6 innings of one-run ball versus the Arizona Diamondbacks with 7 K's and just 3 hits given up.  As a result, Montas got a second start Friday night and it was more of the same as he this time engineered 8 scoreless frames with 7 hits given up and 2 strikeouts.  His ERA through two starts?  Try 0.64 and with a WHIP of 0.86 to boot.  So what is going on here?  Was Montas simply bored in the minors which led to the shaky numbers as we have seen from some other prospects close to the Show or is he simply taking advantage of hitters unaccustomed to his stuff?  Let's find out!

Digging into the advanced numbers tell some of the story here and there are some good and bad things to refer to.  For one thing, Montas has been through four MLB organizations for a reason as he has had trouble with control at almost all levels of the minors and especially when he has gotten a shot to pitch in the majors.  On the flip side, there is insane velocity here as Montas has averaged 97 or HIGHER on his average fastball whenever he has gotten a chance in the majors and so the strikeout potential is real.  Going back to the negative side, Montas is a fly ball pitcher who could have trouble with home runs against better and more powerful lineups. 

When you break it all down, Montas has been a minor league journeyman for a reason and so the fact he is dominating right away should be taken with a major grain of salt.  Right now Montas is taking advantage of opposing hitters not having much of a book on his repertoire but at the same time, he can be put out there until this run of his ends.  Montas has the fastball to stick around but his overall impact will be determined based on where his secondary stuff goes. 

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