MARIETTA, Ga. – A backstop lined with radar guns is what Jarrett Montgomery faced on Saturday night. Montgomery pitched 6 1/3 innings for the Indiana Prospects only allowing two hits, three walks while striking out seven. Unfortunately, a tough seventh inning allowed Dallas Mustangs Sharp to walk away with a victory.
Montgomery took the mound in the bottom of the seventh with his team ahead 2-1, putting the pressure on.
“Pressure is my specialty,” explained Montgomery. “I like pressure. It makes me want to do better to get out of the situation. I handle pressure pretty good. You’ve got to come back from it (and) thrive off of pressure. You worked yourself in, you got to work yourself out.”
Montgomery spent his time on the mound throwing an 88-91 mph two seam fastball that caught the corners of the plate for strikes. He said a low, outside fastball is always his go-to pitch when he has two strikes on a batter. He also threw a killer changeup and said his fastball change-up combination is definitely his strength.
Montgomery is currently ranked No. 29 on the Perfect Game High School Class of 2015 National Rankings, and is ranked No. 2 overall in Indiana. Montgomery said he hopes to work hard enough to be No. 1 or at least in the top 10.
“He’s a top 20 kid in his class,” said head coach Jeff Surbey. “He really brings a lot of energy. He is a true leader, (and) kids look up to him and like playing with (him). He’s just a true leader. He brings out the best in the players, (and) he’s a great teammate.
The 6-foot-1, 190-pound right-hander is from Indianapolis, Ind. and attends Lawrence Central High School. He’s done a few college visits and says Florida, Florida State and Louisiana State are his top three schools as of right now.
“(I’ll play) anywhere down south,” added Montgomery. “I don’t want to stay anywhere near Indiana where it snows in the spring.
“I want to go to college for business. I want to own my own business (one day). I for sure want to be my own boss. I’m thinking (of doing) something in baseball and I want to give back to kids, (and) maybe build a couple baseball fields in Indiana.”
Although he is looking at schools, Montgomery has the dream of being drafted, like his brother Christian Montgomery, a Perfect Game All-American who was drafted by the Mets right out of high school.
“Me and him are very close,” said Montgomery about his relationship with his brother. “He helped me a lot. He started with me when I was younger; whatever he learned he taught me at a younger age.”
Montgomery said he’s very competitive with his brother and tried to be better than he was.
“We go head-to-head,” added Montgomery. “I compare his stats from when he was my age. I thrive off of him.”
Montgomery has been playing with the Indiana Prospects since he was 12 years old. He said he’s had a lot of fun with this program over the years, but he really enjoys playing for Surbey.
“(My) first three years was all about fun. Now it’s all about business and winning, (while) still having fun,” said Montgomery.
“He’s very charismatic,” said Subey about Montgomery. “The kids like to be around him. He treats them with respect. It would be very easy for a kid of his caliber to be all about him, but he includes kids, he genuinely engages with them and talks about them and it’s not all about him.”
The Indiana Prospects started in 2003, and Surbey has been with them for a few years now.
“Our main thing is player development (and) helping kids get to the next level whether its junior college, Division III, Division II, Division I, or the draft. We had the No. 7 draft pick (2012 PG All-American Trey Ball) in the 2013 draft,” explained Surbey.
The Indiana Prospects mission statement reads:
The Mission of the Indiana Prospects Baseball Organization isTOTAL PLAYER DEVELOPMENT. We strive to provide our players with superior training, knowledge and the highest level of competition possible.
“(We) help foster the environment for their growth,” added Surbey. “Surround them with good players but also kids with character. It’s not about the kid who throws 90, it’s about good teammates and bringing kids together from outside of the state and molding them together to be great teammates.”
NOTE: Following the game on Saturday night, Montgomery verbally committed to Florida State University.