As the tweet above says, the Blue Jays have acquired Miguel Montero from the Chicago Cubs. There seems to be cash considerations going both ways and Toronto is sending Chicago a player to be named later.
After a game against the Nationals in which Montero allowed seven stolen bases, the veteran catcher criticized pitcher Jake Arrieta for being slow to the plate with his pitches. That’s, uh, obviously not going to fly. Montero was designated for assignment shortly after making those comments, and now, he’s a Toronto Blue Jay.
Montero is essentially the anti-Luke Maile. He’s having a very good season at the plate but he can’t throw anybody out. Montero’s .805 OPS through 112 plate appearances is the best of his career since 2012 with the Arizona Diamondbacks. That said, he hasn’t thrown out a single potential base stealer in 31 attempts so far this season.
After an All-Star season in Arizona in 2014, Montero signed a three-year deal worth $40 million with the Cubs. He has ~$7 million left on his contract this season, but it appears the Cubs will be picking most of that up.
Obviously Montero is an upgrade on Luke Maile, who’s putting up numbers offensively that make Josh Thole look like Barry Bonds. Maile has been praised on multiple occasions for being an excellent defensive catcher and game caller, but the Jays are scuffling badly offensively, so giving something up on the defensive end of the game to improve the lineup makes sense right now.
The Jays have moved Darrell Ceciliani from the 10-day to the 60-day disabled list to make room for Montero on the 40-man roster. I imagine Maile will be optioned next to make room for him on the 25-man, unless the Jays plan on rolling with three catchers.