Blue Jays Triple-A first baseman Jesus Montero has been slapped with a fifty game suspension after testing positive for a banned stimulant, dimethylbutylamine, the league announced. Montero was once a hyped prospect, but has been trying unsuccessfully to revive his career in recent years.
Montero, 26, never panned out with the Mariners after he was shipped to Seattle in exchange for Michael Pineda in rare swap of high-end young talents who had each reached the majors. All said, Montero owns a .253/.295/.398 big league batting line in his 865 career plate appearances.
This year was the first since 2011 in which Montero failed to earn any MLB action. He did post a strong .317 batting average over 518 Triple-A plate appearances. But he only walked 23 times, resulting in a .349 OBP, and didn’t show much of the power that he had long been expected to provide (11 home runs, .438 slugging).
Of course, Montero was originally a catching prospect; now that he’s limited to first base and DH duties, the bar is raised for his bat. It’s not clear what kind of opportunity he’ll have in the future. For one thing, he’ll need to serve his ban at the start of 2017; for another, it’s not his first, as Montero also took a fifty-game hit after he was caught up in the Biogenesis scandal.