Miguel Montero on Andrew McCutchen: ‘Did we want to hit him? I think we did’
What was arguably the most interesting series in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ 2014 season was its first in the month of August.
Let’s start from the beginning.
Late in Friday night’s game, with the Pittsburgh Pirates comfortably ahead in the ninth inning, D-backs first baseman Paul Goldschmidt was lost for the remainder of the season after being hit in the hand with an Ernesto Frieri pitch.
The following evening, with the Pirates again up big, Arizona reliever Randall Delgado drilled Pittsburgh star Andrew McCutchen square in the back with a fastball. Many believed the D-backs meant to hit the outfielder, which they denied.
Whether or not you believe the D-backs did (or even should have) hit a player intentionally is a matter of opinion and debate, but one of the things that supposedly led credence to the idea that it was done on purpose was an image of D-backs catcher Miguel Montero giving what appeared to be a “special” and, well, not safe for our website signal right before the pitch.
Tuesday afternoon, the long-time D-back Montero was traded to the Chicago Cubs. In the evening, he chatted with Burns and Gambo on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM about many topics, including that sign.
“I called a fastball in,” the catcher said. “If you look at it, the film was like, everybody looked at it and they said, ‘Well, it was too obvious that he called it to hit him.’
“I’m like, ‘No, it’s not too obvious. I always put that finger like that when I call a fastball in.'”
Believe that if you want, but soon after Montero offered up another thought on the pitch.
“Did we want it to hit him? I think we did,” he said. “I’m not going to lie, I mean I think we did. But did I call the pitch to hit him? No, I didn’t even go to the mound and tell him to hit him because it was a brand new pitcher coming in to pitch. So if he got the order to hit him, he probably got it from somebody else, because I didn’t pick up the phone and call to the bullpen.”
For those who may not remember, Delgado was promptly ejected from the game following the pitch. After the game, he said, “I was trying to work my corners more. I was trying to mix my pitches. I think maybe I didn’t have control tonight.”