The Dodgers announced on Thursday that they’ve designated right-handed reliever Sergio Romo for assignment. The moves brings an end to a disappointing tenure for a Romo, who Los Angeles hoped would provide a solid setup option for Kenley Jansen when they signed him this offseason.
Romo, a 5-foot-11, 185-pounder who has often tantalized hitters with his frisbee slider, had struggled mightily this season, posting a 6.12 ERA and 1.40 WHIP while allowing seven home runs over 30 appearances. For what it’s worth, he did have a decent strikeout-to-walk ratio, punching out 31 hitters while walking 12 over 25 innings.
Romo was in his first year with the Dodgers after spending the first nine seasons of his big-league career with the archrival Giants. Romo’s most notable accomplishment in San Francisco was recording the final out of the 2012 World Series while serving as the Giants’ reliever, but he was rather consistent throughout his entire tenure with the club. While he struggled during the postseason, Romo was arguably the Giants’ most consistent reliever last season and took over the closer role late in 2016, posting a 2.64 ERA and 1.08 WHIP over 40 appearances.
Romo, a native of Brawley, California, grew up a Dodgers fan and joined his childhood team on a one-year deal worth $3 million in February. But he clearly wasn’t getting it done in a Los Angeles bullpen that has largely been dominant this year. The Dodgers already possess more than enough major-league-caliber relievers and are rumored to be looking for more, having been linked to Zach Britton, Justin Wilson, and Brad Hand, so there wasn’t going to be much of a role for Romo going forward. In fact, Ken Rosenthal of MLB Network and FOX Sports reported earlier this week that the Dodgers were shopping Romo and fellow veteran Brandon Morrow in order to clear space for a potential trade acquisition.
Now that Romo has been DFA’d, the Dodgers have seven days to trade or release him. If Romo is released, rumors will certainly swirl about Romo going back to San Francisco, considering the Giants’ reputation for giving second chances and the fact that they’re set to bring back Pablo Sandoval later this week. He may be a better fit, however, for a mid-market contender such as the Royals, Twins, or Brewers that is looking to boost its bullpen depth without giving up valuable assets and is willing to try and rehabilitate him.