Sergio Romo struggled mightily with the Dodgers after signing as a free agent last offseason, but recovered after a midseason trade to the Rays. That turnaround was spurred by Romo throwing his fastball more often, up from 26.8 percent with Los Angeles to 41.5 percent in Tampa Bay, while relying on the slider a little less. The change in pitch mix led to a drop in strikeouts, but that was offset by a drop in walks and a big decline in hard-hit rate. His ERA fell from an unplayable 6.12 to an impressive 1.47. That strong second half should earn the 34-year-old Romo a chance in some team's bullpen in 2018. He does have 84 career saves and could end up relatively high on the closer depth chart if he ends up in a weak bullpen, but he's unlikely to be a primary ninth-inning option out of camp regardless of where he lands.
Romo signed a one-year deal with Tampa Bay on Friday, Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com reports. Romo finished up the 2017 campaign with the Rays after being traded by the Dodgers in July. Over the course of the season, he appeared in 55 games, posting a 3.56 ERA and 1.10 WHIP with 11 holds in 55.2 innings of relief. The 34-year-old wasn't able to find a groove during his time in Los Angeles, but settled down once he arrived in Tampa Bay and should be able to secure a setup role for the club once again in 2018.
Romo fired a scoreless inning in Friday's 13-6 extra-inning loss to the Red Sox, allowing one hit. Romo's ERA with the Rays is down to a sparkling 1.73 following Friday's outing, his fourth consecutive scoreless appearance. He's blanked the opposition in 11 of his last 12 trips to the mound overall and has a .183 BAA, .217 wOBA allowed and 23:5 K:BB over his 20 appearances since making his Rays debut on July 24. What's more, Romo is seeing plenty of work, as half of those outings have consisted of more than one inning.
Romo (2-0) struck out the side in a scoreless ninth inning in Sunday's 3-2 extra-inning win over the Cardinals. He also allowed one hit. Romo disposed of the potent trio of Stephen Piscotty, Randal Grichuk and Matt Carpenter on swinging strikeouts, nailing down his second win in a Rays uniform and extending his scoreless streak to seven games in the process. The 34-year-old right-hander now has a 1.10 ERA in 16.1 August innings, and he's notched his two victories in back-to-back outings.
Romo notched his third hold in Thursday's 2-0 win over the Blue Jays, firing a perfect 1.1 innings. Along with Steve Cishek, Romo has proven to be a solid veteran bullpen acquisition for the Rays, as he's now posted five consecutive scoreless efforts. The 34-year-old right-hander hasn't missed many bats over that span (one strikeout over his last five innings), but he's lowered his ERA from 3.72 to 2.20 while allowing only one hit. He's also enjoying a brisk workload, having made nine appearances over the last three weeks.
Romo fired 1.2 scoreless innings in Tuesday's 2-0 loss to the Red Sox, allowing a hit and recording a strikeout. The move to the American League has been relatively successful for Romo, who has three scoreless efforts over six appearances in a Rays uniform. The 34-year-old has worked at least an inning in three straight outings as well, so manager Kevin Cash appears comfortable relying on him for multi-inning assignments if necessary. He's also afforded Romo a brisk workload, having already sent him out on seven occasions over his first 16 days with the club.