LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers have agreed to a contract with former Giants reliever Sergio Romo, according to MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi.The club has not confirmed the signing, which MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez reports is for one year and is pending a physical examination. Romo was the Giants' primary closer in
LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers have agreed to a contract with former Giants reliever Sergio Romo, according to MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi.
The club has not confirmed the signing, which MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez reports is for one year and is pending a physical examination. Romo was the Giants' primary closer in 2013 and '14, when he recorded a combined 61 saves. He pitched well in a setup role in '15 and '16, compiling a 2.64 ERA last season, while limited to 40 appearances because of a forearm flexor strain.
"Now, things seem to be really changing for me. It seems a change of scenery might be on its way for me, but at the end of it all, I'm still keeping the faith," said Romo, who is playing for the Mexican team in the Caribbean Series in Culiacan, Mexico. "There are still teams that still think I can play in the league and still have the confidence in me that I have in myself that I can still play and contribute in the league."
Romo, who turns 34 next month, would seem to have the inside track to replace setup man Joe Blanton, who also is a free agent. The slider specialist has more late-inning experience than Pedro Baez, Josh Ravin, Josh Fields and Chris Hatcher, the right-handed quartet that figured to vie for the job had there not been a late acquisition. Romo, who provides a completely different look than cutter king Kenley Jansen, has been particularly tough on right-handed hitters throughout his career.
"For me, not having a team, I just try to focus on myself and get better in certain areas," Romo said. "That's the reason why I came out to play [in Mexico] was to show that I'm healthy and I'm OK and I got past certain injuries. And also, that I can get better still. There are ways we can always improve, no matter what level, so here I have picked up a couple of things and some tricks that I honestly feel can keep me around a little longer."
At last weekend's FanFest, president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman indicated he was still looking to bolster the bullpen, one of the club's strengths last year, and said there were several intriguing free agents still on the market.
The Dodgers had been rumored to also be interested in Blanton and Jerry Blevins.
Romo is the second significant addition of the offseason, following the trade for second baseman and leadoff hitter John Forsythe from Tampa Bay for starting pitcher Jose De Leon. He also is the second former Giants closer the Dodgers have signed in recent years, following Brian Wilson.
Ken Gurnick has covered the Dodgers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2001.