“I’m extremely hungry to come back here, and hopefully they’ll give me another opportunity,” said Montero, who was up while utility man Garrett Hampson was doing a two-game rehab assignment for a right hand injury. “I’ll be ready.”
Hampson will return to the roster on Tuesday for the start of a three-game set with the Nationals. With rosters going from 28 to 26, with a limit of 14 pitchers, the Rockies also optioned infielder Alan Trejo and starting pitcher Ryan Feltner to Albuquerque.
Montero, 23, has four homers and 12 RBIs at Albuquerque through 20 games this year, and 32 homers at the Double-A and Triple-A levels in the Rockies’ system since the start of last year. And he handled his debut with coolness.
While his power is intriguing, his ability to make adjustments showed Sunday. His first-inning single off Reds lefty starter Reiver Sanmartin was part of a six-run inning. A Reds meeting at the mound allowed the fans to acknowledge Montero’s accomplishment. A pitching change after Sanmartin walked Connor Joe allowed Montero to walk over and hug Joe.
Montero’s second hit was eye-opening. It was a patient, fundamental swing that sent the ball through the middle, past Reds reliever Tony Santillan in the seventh.
“It was sort of a backup breaking ball that was inside, and the way he maneuvered his hands … that’s a hitter,” Rockies manager Bud Black said.