Left handed pitcher Mike Montgomery is rated at the #14th rated prospect for 2011 by MLB.com and while he is a long shot at making the rotation this year, those within the Royals organization say he’s not far off from getting a spot on the roster.
Montgomery’s manager Ned Yost and pitching coach Bob McClure said he reminds them of other young power pitchers in their prime. Yost said, “Every time I watch him throw, I flash back to a young Steve Avery, who when Avery was right, he was really, really good.”
McClure said: “I haven’t seen a left-handed pitcher with that kind of power since I saw Chuck Finley when I saw him as a young guy.”
Avery was a two-time 18-game winner for the Braves and Finley had 200 victories in his career.
The Royals also have 26 year old lefty Everett Teaford. Teaford has a little more professional experience than Montgomery as he enters his sixth year of pro ball, but this is his first major league spring training camp that he has been invited to.
In addition to the pressures of trying to win a spot on the roster, Teaford ran into personal trouble on Sunday night, when his 2004 pickup truck was stolen outside a restaurant in Surprise, AZ, the sight of the Royals spring training camp. While Montgomery is a big guy at 6’4, Teaford is a lanky guy, at 6’0 and 155 pounds.
The Royals also have Danny Duffy, another highly touted left handed pitching prospect. The third round pick in 2007, pitched in the Future’s Game at Busch Stadium during All-star festivities in 2009, but last spring told the team he was taking a leave of absensce. Duffy is back this year as a non-roster invitee.