Prospect Note: Mike Montgomery, LHP, Tampa Bay Rays

Mike Montgomery - Leon Halip

Tampa Bay Rays prospect Mike Montgomery celebrated the July 4th holiday by throwing five solid innings for Triple-A Durham, allowing five hits, two runs and zero walks while fanning three. He's now given up a total of five runs in his last five starts dating back to June 9th, with an 18/5 K/BB ratio in that 22 inning stretch. On the season he is 8-1, 3.30 ERA, 3.21 FIP with a 77/27 K/BB ratio in 90 innings, allowing 70 hits.

You likely remember Montgomery from his days back in the Royals system. Acquired in the James Shields trade, he was stagnating in Kansas City, stalled at Triple-A Omaha for two seasons, and it was hoped that the change in organizations would unlock his ability. That didn't happen last year (4.83 ERA, 87/51 K/BB in 117 innings, 120 hits) but his second go-around the International League has brought better results.

Of course this is now his fourth season at the Triple-A level so it is wise not to get overly excited. On the other hand, he is still just 25 and while he doesn't hit 95 MPH these days, he still has enough fastball to succeed at 89-92, considering that he's made progress learning to command his curveball and changeup. He still has a shot as a back-end starter or a bullpen guy.

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