Jesus Montero Time To First Base

Jeff Sullivan · April 2, 2013 at 4:19 pm · Filed Under Mariners 

Last night, the Mariners played the A’s, and Jesus Montero started for the Mariners, because he’s a starter for the Mariners. The A’s were starting a lefty on the mound, which was good news for Montero, but the worse news was that the lefty is good and he generates a bunch of grounders. Sure enough, Montero wound up 0-for-4, and the three times he faced Brett Anderson, he grounded out up the middle. Some players are able to beat out grounders up the middle, but some players are Jesus Montero.

They weren’t just three groundouts, though. They were three moderately close groundouts, allowing us to time Montero down the line to the bag, since he would’ve been trying to out-run the throws. I remember during yesterday’s Red Sox/Yankees game I saw Ichiro bounce a classic soft grounder the defense wasn’t able to turn for a double play because Ichiro booked it to first. For some players, slow grounders are a part of the skillset, but Jesus Montero should try to avoid grounders like Eric Sogard should try to avoid peanuts. (Eric Sogard looks like he has a peanut allergy.)

How did Montero do? We go in order:

  • Grounder No. 1
  • link
  • 149 frames from contact to base
  • 4.97 seconds from contact to base
  • out
  • Double plays often involve three infielders. This was not a double play, but it involved three infielders, and the throw from the first one to the second one bounced and caused the second one to lose his momentum. Montero was out because it took him five seconds to get to the base, because he must’ve assumed a hit at first and kind of dogged it a little. Which is never a good idea because Montero could’ve been thrown out at first from center field, too. It isn’t out of the question that Jesus Montero runs on stilts.
  • Grounder No. 2
  • link
  • 144 frames from contact to base
  • 4.80 seconds from contact to base
  • out
  • This was kind of a routine grounder, and Montero pulled up at the end, but he still hustled down the line, probably because he heard it about his first effort. And he beat his first effort, by better than three percent. Alternate theory to the stilts theory: Montero always bats right after someone in the dugout gives him dual dead-legs. Or maybe he sits on his feet and his legs fall asleep. If there is one baseball thing you’re better at than Jesus Montero, this is it, this is it right here.
  • Grounder No. 3
  • link
  • 142 frames from contact to base
  • 4.73 seconds from contact to base
  • out
  • Sure, you could say Montero came close to beating this out. But he didn’t come that close, and look at the shortstop as he’s making the play. Look how he gets himself comfortable before throwing to the base. For most hitters, this play would’ve been rushed; for Montero, it was allowed to blossom organically. They always say defenders know who’s running before the ball is put in play, so they know how quickly they have to react. This isn’t necessary for Jesus Montero, as defenders can pick up the baseballs and ask the other infielders about Montero’s running speed and general off-field interests before completing the plays. “Who’s this guy?” “Jesus Montero.” “He run?” “Not really.” “Isn’t there another…” “Yeah, there’s another Jesus Montero, in the minors.” “Can he run?” “Don’t know.” “You think, though?” “I mean, maybe, but I doubt it, probably a catcher and well, you know.” “Yeah.” “Yep.” “Man, this thing’s kinda slippery.” /crow hops /crow hops /throws

And that’s another analysis of Jesus Montero running to first base. In time this’ll get old, but for now it feels fresh, just like everything else having to do with the new baseball season. Pretty soon it’ll all get routine, and pretty soon after that it’ll probably all get kind of boring, with occasional exceptions. Our astonishing, irrepressible ability to adjust is our greatest strength and our most crippling weakness.


13 Responses to “Jesus Montero Time To First Base”

  1. jimabbottsrightarm on April 2nd, 2013 4:30 pm

    So negative…you completely failed to mention he improved each time!

  2. shamus on April 2nd, 2013 4:32 pm

    Any idea of what his times were last season? Has all that running practice helped?

  3. msb on April 2nd, 2013 4:33 pm

    “Our astonishing, irrepressible ability to adjust is our greatest strength and our most crippling weakness.”

    Not unlike Montero’s legs.

  4. ChrisFB on April 2nd, 2013 4:39 pm

    For what it’s worth, via a Scouting Encyclopedia article that my search engine coughed up for me… if that home to first base time is truly accurate, he’d rate a 20 on the 20-80 scouting scale.

    Home Plate to First Base (Right-Handed Hitters)

    20: 4.7+ seconds
    30: 4.5-4.7 seconds
    40: 4.4 seconds
    50: 4.3 seconds
    60: 4.2 seconds
    70: 4.1 seconds
    80: Below 4 seconds

    Home Plate to First Base (Left-Handed Hitters)

    20: 4.6+ seconds
    30: 4.5-4.6 seconds
    40: 4.4 seconds
    50: 4.2-4.3 seconds
    60: 4.1 seconds
    70: 4 seconds
    80: Below 4 seconds

  5. jld on April 2nd, 2013 4:39 pm

    Montero’s average time was 4.83, 90 feet = 27.432 meters. v = 5.6 m/s.

    A good NFL 40m time is 4.3s, or 9.3 m/s. In the same time, 4.8s, a good sprinter (4.3s/40m) could run 44.64m, or 146.45 feet. An extra 56 feet past first!

    (This is not intended to be a rigorous analysis.)

  6. Paul B on April 2nd, 2013 4:55 pm

    if that home to first base time is truly accurate, he’d rate a 20 on the 20-80 scouting scale.

    That sounds about right.

    Scouting validated!

  7. Paul B on April 2nd, 2013 5:00 pm

    Any idea of what his times were last season? Has all that running practice helped?

    Here ya go:

  8. 9inningknowitall on April 2nd, 2013 6:53 pm

    I have to admit the conversation between infielders is one of the better things I’ve seen in a while, and what makes it worse is I could picture someone like Brendan Ryan doing something like that in a Mariner commercial if Montero was playing for another team.

  9. alan smithee on April 2nd, 2013 9:33 pm

    he is never going to get any faster. ever. he’s 23 and runs like the corpse of smoky burgess. no one would care if he could actually play catcher but he cant. so its first base or DH and unless he really starts to hit he’s selling indutrial lighting fixtures before he’s 30.

  10. big hawna on April 3rd, 2013 6:02 am

    Suggested new metric “NOSSNoFONow” OR Number of Sites Sullivan is Not Funny On Now, we need some data, what are his home/away splits for sites he is not funny on?

  11. stevemotivateir on April 3rd, 2013 7:37 am

    @big hawna

    How can there be home/away splits? Does he ‘guest-write’ for any sites?

    You’re right, though. There is nothing funny about how poorly Montero runs. Attempting humor at something so disturbing and disgusting is, well, disturbing and disgusting.

    What a jerk for writing that piece. I say we just boycott the site. There’s clearly nothing to learn anyway.

  12. Carson on April 3rd, 2013 9:38 am

    This really is the best of both worlds. Jeff’s entertaining writing and the cleanliness of USSM.

  13. SeattleNative57 on April 3rd, 2013 8:59 pm

    There was some talk last year among Mariner coaches, including Wedge, that Montero’s offseason remedial running school would include technique. It was noted by some that Montero appeared to be running on his toes and that his head and arm motion was a mess. In fact it was suggested Montero needed to learn how to run. As pathetic as this sounds regarding a professional athlete, any one could plainly see that Montero was poor at running, style and speed included. This season he appears to me to have changed little or not at all. So much for learning how to run. Montero can’t run (very well) and he’s morbidly slow. So much for going first to third, unless it’s a double.

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