Frankie Montas quietly having excellent season for Oakland A’s
By David Hill
The Oakland A’s thought that they had Frankie Montas‘ breakout season. Back in 2019, he was a viable Cy Young candidate, seemingly destined for his first trip to the All Star Game as he established himself as a top of the rotation arm. Those hopes were derailed when he was suspended for PED use, putting his accomplishments that year in a different light.
That continued to be the case after an inconsistent 2020 campaign. While one could argue that the pandemic shortened season kept Montas from settling into a groove, his suspension in 2019 made it easy to wonder if he was just going to be an inconsistent arm who never put everything together. The 2021 campaign was going to be important for his future.
Frankie Montas answering the critics with his performance
The start of the season did not bode well for Montas. He had posted a 6.20 ERA in April, getting shelled twice while posting two excellent outings. It appeared as though he would be the same pitcher he was outside of that enhanced 2019 campaign – a pitcher who would show flashes of brilliance but not be able to sustain that for long periods of time.
Then everything began to click. He has been one of the A’s best pitchers since the calendar turned to May, posting a 3.05 ERA and a 1.145 WHiP over his 156.1 innings, striking out 175 batters with 49 walks. Opponents have mustered a meager .225/.291/.348 batting line against him in that time, hitting just 14 homers.
This is the pitcher that the A’s had been waiting for. Montas is showing that he can be another top of the rotation arm in Oakland, someone that can be a stopper when they desperately need it. His outing against the Astros on Friday, when he allowed just two runs, one earned, on two hits and three walks while striking out eight over his seven innings, were exactly what they needed as they attempted to stave off elimination.
The A’s are going to have some difficult decisions to make this offseason. With at least 11 players eligible for arbitration, including some of their bigger names, there could be a flurry of trades if ownership gives another edict to keep payroll down. Montas has certainly proven his value, both to the A’s and in any potential trade market.
The Oakland A’s have been waiting for Frankie Montas to take that next step. Once the calendar turned to May, he found that extra gear.