Jordan Montgomery impressed in his Major League debut Wednesday afternoon at Yankee Stadium. He showed off an impressive repertoire that included four plus pitches. Montgomery makes his living by repeating his herky-jerky delivery with the same release point, with all four of his pitches creating impressive deception. It was easy to see why Joe Girardi and Larry Rothschild chose the young lefty to be the fifth starter.
Montgomery’s deception creates more swings and misses resulting in high strike out totals. Today he sported a 19% swing and miss rate, well ahead of the league average of 10% and he racked up seven strikeouts in 4.2 innings of work. The only blemishes on his day were the two walks he surrendered and the one fastball that Rickie Weeks sent into the seats.
Overall, it was a solid debut outing for the new No. 5 starter for the Bombers.
— MLB (@MLB) April 12, 2017
The offense was stifled early by young lefty Ian Snell, until things began to unravel for the Rays in the fifth. Snell loaded the bases after a leadoff single by Chase Headley, a walk to Aaron Judge, and an error on Kyle Higashioka’s ground ball to shortstop. Snell almost escaped without harm until he issued a free pass to Aaron Hicks to allow the first Yankee run of the game. Jumbo Diaz came on in relief after the walk to Hicks and allowed a run on a wild pitch to make it 3-2 before getting Chris Carter to pop out to end the frame.
Bryan Mitchell came on in relief of Mongomery for 1.1 shutdown innings, which allowed the Yankee offense to put him in position to earn the win. Judge’s blistering single to center, with an exit speed of 116 mph, sent Starlin Castro home to tie things up at three.
Brett Gardner pinch hit for Pete Kozma and reached on a throwing error by Xavier Cedeno after a violent collision with Weeks at first base. Both players left the game with injuries. Later in the 7th, Judge continued to swing a hot bat, homering in his third consecutive contest. Judge’s moon shot was the final blow to put the game out of reach for the Rays, sealing the first series victory of the season for the Yankees.
The Yankees will look to sweep the series tomorrow night with Severino taking the mound at 7:05pm.