Archive for the ‘Ricky Romero’ Category


Jeff Blair had Mike Wilner on his Fan 590 radio show this morning to discuss the state of the Blue Jays rotation, the shape of which has apparently largely been decided already by manager John Gibbons. Ol’ Gibbers will slot Drew Hutchison second, between soft-tossers R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle, with Brandon Morrow going fifth, starting the home opener while ostensibly being punished (or something) for not being particularly sharp in his first live game action since hitting the DL back at the end of May (save for two innings for Dunedin on a rehab stint in mid-June).

The fourth starter’s spot is still up for grabs, we’re told. Still in the running are ailing mediocrity J.A. Happ, Todd “hoping to not start a sixth straight season in triple-A” Redmond, and non-starter Esmil Rogers. That all makes enough sense, I suppose, but what was somewhat jaw-dropping about the segment to me was what both Blair and Wilner suggested the real plan for the fourth spot in the rotation. That pitcher, apparently, is merely a placeholder until Marcus Stroman is ready. Or, should he continue his supposed upward trend, until Ricky Romero is ready.

Yes, Ricky Romero.

Granted, they were clear that it’s a fairly sizable “if,” but Blair figures that ol’ RR Cool Jay will get every opportunity to succeed, simply because of the money that’s still owed him, and Wilner… well, Wilner was ready to put a positive shine on everything (save Dioner Navarro, apparently), and whichever way this plan ends up going (and it won’t, he figures, include J.A. Happ), he tells us the rotation will be fine.

Not really buying that line, but more importantly… uh… Romero?

Read the rest of this entry »


Crotch grab in the direction of @Proposition_Joe who sends the above picture our way with the caption: “Yikes, clearance rack at Jays Shop consisting entirely of Romero jerseys.”

If I wasn’t lazy and felt like doing some investigative reporting I might call the shop, or walk down, and check out to see if these really are all Romero jerseys– might buy a hat while I’m at it!– but… why would Proposition Joe (aka Chris Romero– presumably no relation) lie?

He wouldn’t lie. I assume.

And if that’s for real… man, that’s cold.

He’s still on the damn roster! I mean, I’m sure that, after a shaky season in the minor leagues and your GM telling the world that you’re going to be taken off the 40-man once the season ends, the number of people willing to invest in your jersey probably takes nose dive. Still, though, not exactly a strong vote of confidence, even if it has more to do with shelf space than what anyone actually in the business of baseball thinks.

The forces of the market can be cruel, huh?


“If it happens it happens, if it doesn’t, hey, I’ll go home to the people that have supported me and been behind me this whole time.”

That’s Ricky Romero, as quoted in a Shi Davidi piece at Sportsnet last week about the potential of his call-up to the Jays, not-so-subtly giving credence to some of the things we’ve heard– particularly, I think, on the radio from Jeff Blair– about Romero’s bizarre unhappiness with the way he feels the organization has treated him as he his career has continued speeding away from him in 2013.

I say bizarre, of course, because– while I don’t know the grimy details of the relationship behind the scenes– I’m not sure what the hell Romero expected here.

Does being “behind” a player mean letting him go out and get his head caved in for sixty starts?

I guess I understand the anger and frustration in Romero– who pitched to a 5.68 ERA in Buffalo this year, with lefties hitting him to the tune of an effing 1.004 OPS– but it just isn’t really plausible that where he’s at is for a lack of support from the club for their former All-Star, who is still owed $15.6-million after this season. They have far too much invested in him, and have had far too much need for him to be right to not be looking out for him– even if it’s sometimes misguided and even if it really comes down to self interest.

That said, I’m not sure I entirely agree with the thesis about the call-up posited by Dirk Hayhurst at Sportsnet today, as he suggests that, in addition to being about money, for the club, “the hope is that by pulling Romero up and getting him back into some big league games in September, with playoff pressure long gone and the eyes of many fans diverted elsewhere, they’ll get Romero into controlled scenarios more conducive to success. Should Romero have success in these limited samples, he’ll (supposedly) get the psychological boost he needs to get back to 2011 form.”

Read the rest of this entry »


Today in unsurprising, yet surprising news, the Jays have made a few roster moves in order to get Brandon Morrow healthy and to shore up their overworked bullpen after last night’s howevermany inning marathon in San Diego. Back comes Ramon Ortiz, Morrow joins the long list of Jays on the DL, and Chad Jenkins goes down for Mickey Storey, but let’s not bury the lede too badly here: in order to get Ortiz on the roster, the Jays have outrighted Ricky Romero off the 40-man.

That means, of course, that any club could have taken Romero and the $7.5-million he makes this year, plus the $15.6-million he’s owed for the two seasons after that. Aaaaaaaand they didn’t. Because… obviously.

It’s a smart piece of business by the Jays, and not entirely shocking, but still a pretty damn strange thing to see in words.

The demotion of Jenkins might seem odd, too, after last night’s performance– though Petco certainly helped him– but with two off-days next week, it makes total sense.

Oh, and hey! Brandon Morrow’s hurt! Fucking great!

rickyromerowoeRicky Romero used to be good. Then he was bad. After unfair comparisons to the quickly developing players in his draft class, Romero emerged in 2009 as a promising young southpaw with one of the better off-speed pitches in baseball. In 2010, he made good on this promise, producing a good enough season to give fans a semblance of hope in a year that would otherwise feel dreadful for its sudden absence of previous staff ace Roy Halladay.

In 2011, it all clicked. Romero was trending in the right direction in terms of strikeouts, walks and ground balls. Buoyed by a low BABIP and high strand rate – numbers typically attributed to events outside of a pitcher’s control – the Blue Jays ace finished the season with a career high in wins and an ERA below three.

Given the somewhat disappointing results of the rest of the young and inexperienced staff, Romero’s performance stood out as something that was actually encouraging to fans, and presumably to management, who prior to his breakout year, had locked up the left-handed pitcher’s services for the next five seasons at the seemingly low cost of a guaranteed $30.1 million.

Then came 2012.

Read the rest of this entry »


So much for Josh Johnson feeling a lot better, eh? According to an official release from the Jays, Ricky Romero is heading back to join the club, and will take Johnson’s start on Friday. 2013, you guys!

In last night’s Game Threat I pointed to a tweet from Barry Davis of Sportsnet, who spoke to Josh Johnson, and told us that the pitcher had informed him his arm was “much better” and that he expected “to be ready to go Friday night.”

Well, like I say, so much for that, as not only has Johnson been placed on the DL, but– curiously (and hopefully incorrectly)– the release from the club says that it isn’t backdated to his last start, which Mike Wilner points out was on April 21st, but to April 29th. There’s no reason for the club not to backdate it to the 21st, so I can’t see how that’s right. If it is, he won’t be eligible to pitch again until the visit from the San Francisco Giants mid-month.

Of course, not backdating it does give the club a little extra time to figure out how the rotation is going to work out, now that– sooner than the ever planned– they have six guys for five spots, and the nominal lowest guy on the totem pole, J.A. Happ, pitching as good as anybody.

Or, y’know, it’s happening because, according to a tweet from @BlakeMurphyODC, the Jays “could only backdate to 29th if they wanted to recall Lincoln, who was optioned down on the 28th.”

Read the rest of this entry »


Well this is slightly newsworthy:

The Halladay treatment! Except, almost certainly with less of a total overhaul involved, though we don’t know that just yet. Alex Anthopoulos is to speak with reporters this evening in Dunedin to address a decision that, despite the ugly look of it, probably makes more sense than having him trying to work out whatever is wrong with him with a Buffalo club that’s trying to be competitive in their own right. The warm weather in Dunedin can’t hurt, either.

Mike Wilner confirms the obvious, which is that J.A. Happ will now be the club’s fifth starter, while Barry Davis tweets that Alex Anthopoulos told reporters that Romero just ran out of time to get himself together.

Read the rest of this entry »