Jordan Montgomery decries ‘heavy’ pinstripes, Yankees’ career-ruining advice

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Jordan Montgomery feels his move to St. Louis saved his baseball career and gave him respite from a lot of problems in New York. The 29-year-old pitcher also denounced the “heavy pinstripes” and career-ruining advice he got at Yankee Stadium.

Nicknamed “Gumby,” the South Carolina native joined the Yankees in 2017. However, New York traded him to the Cardinals for Harrison Bader in a surprising deadline-day deal.

Since his arrival in St. Louis, Montgomery has resurrected his career that dipped with the Yankees. While he is thriving for his new team, his replacement for New York, Harrison Bader is still nursing an injury and is yet to play for the Yankees.

The left-handed pitcher is happy that he has to no longer deal with the pressure of being a Yankee, and there is no one to tell him not to throw his fastball, as the Yankees did.

In fact, the pitcher is best contributing to the Cardinals with the same fastball that the Yankees stopped him from pitching.

“I was always worried about getting booed off the mound in New York,” Montgomery told when asked about his days with the Yankees on R2C2 podcast hosted by CC Sabathia and Ryan Ruocco. The pitcher continued, “The pinstripes are heavy; not everyone can handle it; I feel like I handled it OK; I could’ve been better, but there was a lot of things going into that I guess. But here in St. Louis, I’m just being myself and pitching the way I want to. I guess the fans have kind of embraced me so far.”

Montgomery is set to pitch Tuesday against the Brewers in St. Louis. In seven starts with the Cardinals, he is 5-0 with a 1.45 ERA. Before joining the Cardinals, he was 3-3 with a 3.69 ERA in 21 starts with the Yankees. In 98 games (97 starts) as a Yankee, the 29-year-old had an ERA of 3.94.

Montgomery is set to start Tuesday against the Brewers visiting St. Louis. In seven starts with the Cardinals, he is 5-0 with a 1.45 ERA. Before joining the Cardinals, he was 3-3 with a 3.69 ERA in 21 starts with the Yankees. In 98 games (97 starts) as a Yankee, the 29-year-old had an ERA of 3.94.

In his first game as a Cardinal, he faced the Yankees in St. Louis. He pitched five scoreless innings, and the Cardinals won 1-0. Six out of his seven starts for the Cardinals have been at home.

Montgomery said that the Yankees didn’t like his fastball, but now it’s one of his best pitches.

“I didn’t trust my heater at the Yankees very much,” Montgomery said, “I was told that it wasn’t as good as my other pitches and that if I was going to get hit, it would be on a curveball or changeup, which isn’t how you can pitch.”

He added: “So, if I had two strikes on a batter, he probably took an automatic ball because he knew I was going to throw a curveball or changeup. He just wanted to foul off a changeup or catch a curveball. I’m throwing my fastball in two-strike counts, and I’m throwing anything in any count now, so it’s definitely opened up.”

Montgomery said that he would “absolutely” argue about how he uses his fastball that the Yankees had stopped.

According to him: “But then I would miss a spot and give up a homer because I never threw my four-seamer in, so there was really no consistent feel of it, and I’d leak middle or I wouldn’t have any confidence in it, he said. I’m thinking, ‘all right, I’m throwing this not to give up a hit’ instead of, ‘I’m gonna throw this and blow your doors off.’ So now it’s just a whole different aggressive mindset where I’m the guy, I’m a dog on the mound and I’m just coming right after everybody.”

He said that the Yankees did treat him well, and he thought he would always remain a Yankee.

“In his words: “When you come up from the homegrown, they take care of you, and not everyone can pitch in Yankee Stadium,” Montgomery said. “When we traded for Sonny Gray, it didn’t work out so well. When we traded for Joey Gallo, it didn’t work out so well, either. When you trade for someone and they pitch in New York, you never know how it’s going to work out. I kind of felt safe and thought I would be there forever, or at least for a few more years.”

Do you agree with Jordan Montgomery? Were the Yankees wrong in their advice? Are the pinstripes heavy due to pressure and expectations? As a fan, what is your opinion?

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