Now that the 2017 season is over for the New York Mets, we have been looking back at the year that was. After taking a more general view of the offense, pitching, and coaching staff, it’s time to take a look back at the Mets’ players. This series will take a look at every player on the active roster for the Mets at the end of season from A (Nori Aoki) to W (David Wright). The review will look at their season statistics, stories, and what role (if any) they will have next season. We continue our series today with a look at starting pitcher Rafael Montero.
Player Review: Rafael Montero
Minor Leagues: 5 Starts, 29.0 Innings Pitched, 0-2 Won-Loss Record, 2.48 ERA, 1.03 WHIP, 37:12 Strikeout:Walk Ratio
Major Leagues: 34 Appearances, 18 Starts, 119.0 Innings Pitched, 5-11 Won-Loss Record, 5.52 ERA, 1.75 WHIP, 114:67 Strikeout:Walk Ratio
Story: After the New York Mets surprisingly kept Rafael Montero on their 40 man roster over the winter, Montero earned a spot on the Opening Day roster due to a strong spring training performance. The Mets put Montero in their bullpen, and he struggled massively, pitching to a 9.45 ERA in April. Despite the poor performance, the Mets stubbornly kept Montero on the roster until late May, even giving him a few spot starts along the way. Montero finally got demoted to the minor leagues in late May, and he pitched well for Triple-A Las Vegas, earning yet another chance in the rotation in late June.
Things appeared to click for Montero at that point as he pitched relatively well for a month, earning his first big league win since 2014 against the San Francisco Giants. Injuries kept Montero in the Mets’ rotation for the rest of the season, where he was pretty effective when he actually threw strikes. The problem was that Montero didn’t do it often enough, showing flashes of ability and frustrating the Mets with his inconsistency.
Montero pitched much more effectively than ever before, but it was still a below average effort. This is progress for Montero, but he still has a ways to go to become a dependable member of the Mets’ pitching staff.
Contract Status: Pre-Arbitration Eligible
Odds of Returning: 80%
2018 Role: Reserve Starter
There is still a chance the Mets decide to utilize Montero’s 40 man roster spot in another way, but if they have gone this far he will likely be back next season. Montero will have to earn a role on the roster in spring training, but if the Mets need to see Montero on a regular basis again they will have more problems on their hands next season.
Check back soon as our Player Review Series continues with a look at catcher Tomas Nido!