Bautista supports Montoyo's potential comeback after dismissal 1

Major League Baseball legend Jose Bautista has backed Charlie Montoyo to bounce back from the disappointment of being sacked as Toronto Blue Jays’ manager.

The 56-year-old signed a new contract with the club in April, but a run of two wins in 11 matches led to the Blue Jays relieving him of his duties.

There was plenty of speculation that Montoyo had lost the dressing room, with several high-profile players reportedly happy to see him leave.

The club subsequently appointed John Schneider as interim manager and he has helped to keep the Blue Jays in contention for a wildcard berth.

Having played for the club from 2008-2017, Bautista continues to follow the Blue Jays’ fortunes with interest. He told Betway he was surprised to see Montoyo dismissed.

“I thought it was a little bit strange,” he said. “But that being said, I’m not in that clubhouse. I’m not part of that team or organisation, so I don’t know what’s happening on the inside. The only thing I can do is speculate, and I would have to assume it was just a lack of alignment and vision.

“There’s a lot of personalities in that clubhouse who know what they have to do to win games every single day. I never saw comments after he got relieved of his duties suggesting the players were too unhappy, so maybe there was something there too.

“The most important thing for them is that they’re now on the right track and they’re starting to win again. I’m sure Charlie will fall on his feet somewhere and continue his great baseball career as a coach and a manager somewhere else.”

Schneider’s ascension into the managerial hot-seat appears to be the natural progression for a man who has spent 20 years with the Blue Jays’ organisation.

He has plenty of experience of managing at a lower level, and served under Montoyo for the past few years in a bench coach role.

His appointment sparked an upturn in the Blue Jays’ fortunes, with the team posting a 16-12 record in his first 28 games in charge of the team.

Guiding the Blue Jays to the play-offs will be pivotal to Schneider’s hopes of getting the job on a permanent basis, although that will be no easy task.

With the New York Yankees romping away at the top of the American League East, the Blue Jays are battling with several teams for a wildcard berth.

They include the Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles, and their remaining games against them will be pivotal to their play-off aspirations.

With little to choose between the trio, the MLB streams of those matches will be highly sought after by fans.

While Bautista has been impressed by what he has seen from Schneider to date, he remains unsure whether the decision to dismiss Montoyo will ultimately pay dividends.

“I was part of teams where changing the manager mid-season had positive impact, and others had a negative impact,” Bautista added.

“It all depends on what the feel is around that clubhouse, what the players are thinking, what’s brewing under the surface.

“It can go either way – it’s all about the reasons why and the underlying aspects of what led to that decision being made. The early results seem to indicate that change was needed and wanted, but the season’s not over yet.

“I think the best time to analyse those things is when the season’s over. The early signs suggest it was a positive one for the Jays and hopefully it continues to be that way, because I want to see them win.”