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During Charlie Montoyo’s three seasons as manager of the Toronto Blue Jays, the 55-year-old has presented himself as a soft-spoken, mild-mannered, always-positive guy.
That’s why it caught everybody a little off guard when the skipper was visibly upset after Tuesday's loss to the New York Yankees, dropping an F-bomb when discussing the recent play of his club's bullpen.
When asked by Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi about pitchers faltering when put in high-leverage situations, Montoyo didn’t mince words about the performance and the deployment of the team’s relievers.
“It seems like every day I get a question: What’s wrong with [Anthony] Castro? What’s wrong with [Tyler] Chatwood? Or now it’s [Rafael] Dolis, what’s wrong with Dolis? Why are you pitching Dolis in that inning?” Montoyo said. “It’s been every [expletive] month, I mean the whole month, about the same thing.
"The guys, we’re going to give them a chance. Castro, we need Castro to pitch good. Chatwood was good today, Dolis we need him. Romano came in and gave up a double, he’s still going to pitch. This is who we’ve got, and we’re going to trust them; this is who we’ve got. And we’ve been in every game, as you know, the bullpen’s just not doing the job. But you know what, they’re going to get a chance again tomorrow.”
Montoyo was then directly asked how frustrated he's been with the recent results and quipped, "Really?"
"We're here to win games and it's been frustrating because we have been playing good baseball," he added. "When your bullpen struggles, nothing's going to work."
It’s very easy to understand where Montoyo is coming from. Since May 20, Toronto’s relief corps has ranked at or near the bottom in several key pitching categories. Over that span, the Blue Jays own a 10-14 record and haven’t won a single game in which they’ve scored fewer than four runs.
Injuries have undoubtedly been a factor, with several high-leverage arms like Kirby Yates, Julian Merryweather, David Phelps and Ryan Borucki on the shelf. Without a clear internal solution, pressure is mounting for the front office to bring in some reinforcements.
Toronto currently sits fourth in the AL East, 8.5 games back of the Tampa Bay Rays for first, and 4.5 games out of the second wild-card spot.
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