The Cincinnati Reds and free agent pitcher have agreed to terms on a deal, per reports that came out a few days ago, and that I’m just now seeing because, you know, holiday, weekend, all that. The deal is reportedly one year at $16 million.
Montas threw just 4.1 innings over three September appearances between the minors and the majors in 2023 after undergoing shoulder surgery prior to the season. Montas had a history of injury issues which he appeared to have put behind him when the New York Yankees acquired him from the Oakland A’s at the 2022 trade deadline. Montas made 32 starts in 2021, with a 3.37 ERA and 3.37 FIP, and had logged 19 starts with a 3.18 ERA and 3.35 FIP before the trade.
Unfortunately for New York, Montas immediately went downhill after the trade. In his first start post-trade he gave up six runs in three innings. In eight starts in all for the Yankees in 2022, Montas had a 6.35 ERA and 4.93 FIP in 39 innings, with his last start coming in mid-September. He made an appearance in Game One of the ALCS against the Houston Astros, allowing a solo home run to Jeremy Pena in an inning of work.
For Montas and Lou Trivino, the Yankees gave up three pitchers — Ken Waldichuk, JP Sears and Luis Medina — who logged significant innings for the A’s in 2023, as well as minor league infielder Cooper Bowman. Waldichuk and Medina were more or less replacement level, though Sears put up a 2.5 bWAR over 32 starts for Oakland in 2023. Montas missing most of the season, while Luis Severino and Carlos Rodon combined for roughly 150 innings with an ERA north of 6.50, was a big factor in the Yankees’ disappointing 2023 season.