Former closer, Sergio Romo is on the open market, and could be an interesting acquisition for a Houston Astros team that desperately needs to revamp their bullpen. Romo had a rough summer, posting ERAs of 4.26, 9.72 and 3.72 in May, June and July, yet still managed to collect 15 saves in those three months. Romo finished strong, however, with ERAs of 0.00 and 2.57 in the final two months of the regular season, and a cumulative 1.29 ERA in the postseason. It’s that postseason experience that could be a big boost for the young Astros.
While Sergio Romo (3.72 ERA in 2014) was relieved of his closer’s role amid his struggles, he still has experience in closing out games, if need be. If Houston is happy with Chad Qualls (3.33) in that role, then Romo can set up, and give the Astros a solid 1-2 punch.
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According to FanGraphs, Romo is projected to receive a two year deal worth about $12M. That is certainly within the Astros spending limit, addresses a need, and leaves room for more free agent spending. While Romo’s ERA came in a little high, his career ERA still sits at a low 2.51. The Colorado Rockies were the former closer’s nemesis this past season, piling on 12 runs against Romo, who allowed 24 runs all season. Good news! The Rockies are not on the schedule for 2015.
Now, why would a 3-time World Series Champion with one team leave and sign with someone else? It appears as though Santiago Casilla has taken closing duties in San Francisco heading in to next season, and if Romo wants to a closer, that is an option the Astros could look at. The Giants also have plenty on their plate with trying to re-sign Pablo Sandoval, and may not be willing to spend the money on a set-up man, when Hunter Strickland could be ready for a big role in 2015.
My gut is saying that Sergio Romo will sign somewhere else, unless he takes a pay cut. If the Giants aren’t going to bring back the slider machine, the Astros should move Romo up on their list.