Ricky Romero: Aiming For 2013 As The #5 Starter
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Tuesday March 19th, 2013
Bernie Olshansky (Baseball Writer): Follow @BernieOlshansky
At the beginning of 2012, Ricky Romero was solidified as the number one starter in a strong Toronto Blue Jays roster. In the previous three years of his career, he only had an ERA above 4.00 once (in his rookie season, 4.30), and had won more than 10 games every year.
2012 was an absolute disaster for Romero as he posted a sky-high 5.77 ERA and a 9 – 14 record. He had fans confused as to how such a solid pitcher could do a complete 180 and turn from an ace to an iffy back-of-the-rotation starter.
Romero is in a very interesting situation for 2013. The Blue Jays added two very formidable starters in Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle when they acquired the two in a blockbuster trade with the Miami Marlins. The two former Marlins starters will help support the preexisting rotation consisting of Brandon Morrowand Romero..
Also in contention for a spot is Kyle Drabek, who has made starts over the past couple of years, but has never really stuck. Johnson, Buehrle, Morrow, and Alvarez will round out the top four spots, and Romero will most likely be the fifth starter for 2013.
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It’s a shame as to the situation that Romero is in for this year, but if he can show some consistency and avoid the starts where he gives up five, six, even seven runs, Romero should find himself back in coaches’ and fans’ good graces.
Ricky Romero needs to prove that 2012 was simply a fluke and that he can return to previous form. He will turn 29 this year, so he should be entering his prime. This year should theoretically be the best year of his career.
The best year of his career was 2012, when he went 15-11 with a 2.92 ERA over 225 Innings. A performance like this would be more than enough for the Blue Jays to succeed in the AL East.
In my opinion, the addition of the starters from the Marlins will help Romero immensely. Johnson and Buehrle will take pressure off of Romero, so he will not feel like he has to carry the team. Part of Romero’s struggles last year could have been due to the depleted rotation due to the injury to Brandon Morrow.
Romero might have been doing too much and failing as a result. The main statistic that increased in 2012 was walks. Romero had previously walked 79, 82, and 80 in 2009, 2010, and 2011 respectively. He walked 105 in 2012. This is one of the main reasons for Romero’s increased ERA.
If Ricky Romero can limit his walks in 2013, he will be in the clear. Another statistic that might increase for the better is Romero’s wins.
Both players should help set the table for existing Jays’ sluggers Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion. Romero will receive more run support than he did in 2012, so pending an improvement in his control, he should see an increase in the win column.
Romero has not had the best spring in 2013, giving up seven earned runs and seven walks in 8.2 Innings. I would not read too much into this as Spring Training is more to work out the kinks, but it is a little bit concerning.
Romero’s next few starts will be important, and if he can limit the walks and runs, he will have himself a spot in the 2013 Blue Jays rotation.
With or without Ricky Romero, the Blue Jays are poised for success. But, if he can return to his 2011 form, the Jays are in for a fun ride, possibly all the way through October.
***The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com or their partners***
Today’s feature was prepared by our Baseball Writer Bernie Olshansky. We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers. You can also follow Bernie on Twitter. Follow @BernieOlshansky
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Posted on March 19, 2013, in Players: Fantasy Baseball Articles, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged baseball, blue jays, brandon morrow, comeback, edwin encarnacion, era, five-starter, henderson alvarez, jays, jose reyes, josh johnson, kyle drabek, mark buehrle, Mark buerhle, melky cabrera, miami marlins, mlb, pitching, r.a. dickey, ricky romero, rotation, rotations, starting, struggle, toronto blue jays, walks. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.