Washington Nationals: Sergio Romo a solid free agent target

TORONTO, ON - AUGUST 14: Sergio Romo
TORONTO, ON - AUGUST 14: Sergio Romo /

The Washington Nationals currently have a need for a reliever to complete the bullpen. Free agent Sergio Romo is certainly worth a look.

The first-half bullpen has historically been a weak spot for the Washington Nationals. They have struggled early in the season and relied on midseason acquisitions, such as Mark Melancon, Sean Doolittle, Ryan Madson, and Brandon Kintzler.

Fortunately, the Nats’ 2018 bullpen does not appear to fit this description. However, with Kintzler currently a free agent, they could use another reliever or two. If they decide to acquire a reliever via free agency, Sergio Romo could be a great fit.

Romo, a 34-year-old reliever, is one of the most decorated relievers in the league and is currently a free agent. 2017 was a year of uncertainty for Romo, as it was his first season away from San Francisco, but he remained effective.

In 55 appearances between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays, Romo pitched to a 3.56 ERA, which is surprisingly the third-highest of his career. The fact that a 3.56 ERA is the third-highest of his ten-year career speaks to how dominant and consistent he has been.

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Throughout his ten-year career, Romo owns a 2.69 ERA. In today’s game when relievers routinely come and go, a sub-three ERA is outstanding.

Another encouraging aspect of Romo’s 2017 season was what he was able to accomplish throughout the second-half with the Rays. In 25 appearances, he pitched to a microscopic 1.47 ERA. After a bit of a rocky start with the Dodgers, he proved that he is still capable of being an effective reliever for a contender.

If the Nats sign Romo, one of the main assets he provides will be his postseason experience. During his tenure with the Giants, he became a three-time World Series champion, so he has plenty of postseason experience.

Throughout his career, Romo has pitched to a 3.09 ERA in 27 postseason appearances. Even more impressive, he served as the Giants’ closer in 2014 and recorded three saves during the World Series. As the Nats presumably groom Koda Glover and Enny Romero to become future closers, Romo could serve as a great mentor.

Romo could also be a terrific veteran presence. As a ten-year veteran and three-time World Series champion, he has accomplished more than anyone could ever wish for. With Jayson Werth likely gone, the Nats could use another veteran presence in the clubhouse.

In addition to being experienced, Romo is also widely regarded as one of the funniest and best personalities in the league. Because of this, he would likely fit right in with new manager Dave Martinez. Romo’s experience and personality could also aid the transition from Dusty Baker to Martinez.

While Romo is no longer the dominant closer that he was with the Giants earlier this decade, he is still an effective reliever. With Madson and Doolittle locking down the eighth and ninth innings, Romo could prosper in a sixth or seventh inning role while also mentoring younger relievers.

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Romo is not the dominant, big-name reliever that many fans will want, but he could be the perfect fit for the Nats.