Catching/DHing/Home run mashing super-prospect Jesus Montero will join the team today and likely make his official major league debut within the next few days. We’ve been hearing about this guy for three or four years and now the offensive expectations are high. I expected everyone to be just about as giddy as I am.
Imagine my surprise when trusted Twitterer @firstheart42 disagrees. She wrote an excellent piece on why her enjoyment of this has suffered due to fans and a lot of their stupid reactions. You can read it here.
Hannah (Firstheart42’s actual name) is one of the most level-headed Yankee fans out there. Never gets too high, never gets too low, unless she sees David Robertson, then all bets are off. Many times she has talked me down off a ledge when I was angry at some dumb reactionary things I had seen on Twitter about the Yankees and their players.
I want to say this to Yankee fans: whatever Montero does over the next month (and possibly more) has absolutely, positively no effect on long-term projections, barring some crazy injury (Mo forbid). He could bat .050 with 75% K rate and it doesn’t matter. It would suck because any Yankee player going through that would suck. He could bat .450 with .900 SLG and 10 HRs and it wouldn’t matter. It would kick ass because any Yankee crushing the ball like that would kick ass.
Hannah is right – whatever Montero does over his month-plus cameo with the Yankees will inspire some idiocy. If he does well, there will be some idiots crowing that he should’ve come up earlier, and some idiots somehow trying to ‘lay claim’ to his success because they touted him in a blog post in 2001 when he was 11. If he struggles at first, there will be idiots saying he’s a bust and we should’ve traded him for Hiroki Kuroda when we had the chance, and some idiots will say that he should’ve stayed down in AAA and Cashman has destroyed his potential.
The idiots are wrong. Ignore them. I am greatly excited to see Montero because I have heard such awesome things yet, because I don’t go to/watch minor league games, I have yet to see him swing a bat live. If he does not meet expectations, that will be sad but I will be just as excited next April to see him starting at DH or catcher.
Montero was born on November 28th, 1989. That is 17 days after me. He is 21 years old, competing against the highest level of talent in the world, whilst I am unemployed and my days consist of job applications, playing Madden and watching sports. Jesus will see pitches over the next month he has never seen before. I’m 21 and the thought of getting in to the batter’s box at Fenway, against Papelbon as the winning run with the tying run on 2nd and two outs, and I would probably wet my pants out of fear. And disgust, because Papelbon is one ugly dude.
Montero was ahead of his age group in AAA. That is even more true in the big leagues. I urge all Yankee fans to follow Hannah’s general example in fandom: don’t get too high, don’t get too low in your reaction to Montero. If he hits a homerun his first game, I will probably stand up in my living room, do the macarena before some serious Fist Pumps (copyright Francisco Cervelli 2011). It’s okay to be excited or disappointed, just think before you say anything rash and remember he’s 21.
Enjoy seeing one of the best hitting prospects in years and the hopeful cornerstone of our franchise make his debut. Chances are, in 20 years, you’ll be telling your kids about the debut of Jesus Montero.