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Montoyo making an excellent first impression

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TSN Baseball Insider


I tell my kids, “You only get one shot at a first impression, so don’t waste it.” Somebody must have also shared that wisdom with Charlie Montoyo, because the impression he has given so far is that of being a very good person and a more than capable manager.

His game managing is excellent despite the team’s 8-12 record. He manages the players that he has instead of pining for better players.

Minor-league managers understand that they get what they get when it comes to players. Their job is to get the most out of the roster they have been given. Montoyo’s 18 years in the minors have given him that perspective as a big-league manager.

Here are a few more examples of the strong impression he’s making:

- The decisions made by the front office to trade away arguably the two best leaders on the team – Kendrys Morales and Kevin Pillar – were based upon a feeling of confidence that Montoyo and his staff can handle whatever leadership is needed.

- The players’ reaction to their first win of the season and the celebration for their manager’s first major-league victory points to a real connection he has made in a short period of time. The players only celebrate the manager if they feel celebrated by their manager.

- Montoyo colorfully called himself out last week for a mistake where he realized he should have challenged a call in the seventh inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays. He dropped a ton of F-bombs, which made him seem real. Also, acknowledging his mistake is a valuable tool in getting players to take accountability themselves.

You find out more about somebody during tough times than you do when things are going well.

After the Jays were swept in Cleveland earlier this season, they headed to Boston for a quick two-game series that included the Red Sox home opener and celebration of the 2018 World Championship with a ring ceremony.

The momentum could have been rolling in the wrong direction for a young, struggling club but Montoyo’s Jays came out aggressively against Sox ace Chris Sale, knocking him out of the........