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Giants closer: Could Sergio Romo replace Will Smith?

The Minnesota Twins declined a club option on reliever Sergio Romo, making an SF Giants reunion a possibility. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
The Minnesota Twins declined a club option on reliever Sergio Romo, making an SF Giants reunion a possibility. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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The San Francisco Giants are in the market for a new closer. Could a reunion with Sergio Romo be the answer?

In a recent article, Around the Foghorn contributor Dzintars Grinfelds tossed out the idea of the San Francisco Giants potentially bringing back veteran reliever Sergio Romo to address the closer void.

It’s an idea worth exploring a bit further.

The 36-year-old began his pro career in the Giants organization, as he was selected in the 28th round of the 2005 MLB draft out of Colorado Mesa University.

He made his MLB debut in 2008 with a 2.12 ERA in 29 appearances and quickly emerged as a staple out of the bullpen during nine seasons with the team.

The slider specialist took over as the team’s closer midway through the 2012 season, tallying 14 saves during the regular season and four more in the playoffs, including three in a four-game sweep of the Detroit Tigers in the World Series.

He followed that up with his lone All-Star appearance in 2013 when he converted 38 of 43 save chances with a 2.54 ERA and 1.08 WHIP over 65 appearances.

All told, he wrapped up his time in San Francisco with a 2.58 ERA, 0.96 WHIP and 10.2 K/9, recording 84 saves along the way.

Even at this stage in his career, he’s still a quality late-inning option.

He began the 2019 season with the Miami Marlins, nailing down 17 saves in 18 chances with a 3.58 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 38 games before he was traded to the Minnesota Twins at the deadline.

Thrust into a playoff race, he tallied 16 holds and three saves in 27 appearances following the trade, posting a brilliant 27-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio over 22.2 innings in the process.

Set to turn 37 years old on March 4, Romo will likely have to settle for a one-year deal in free agency, and that could make him the perfect short-term solution to filling the closer’s role in San Francisco.

Seeing him wrap up his stellar MLB career in a San Francisco Giants uniform would be fitting, and targeting him in free agency would be by no means a purely sentimental move.

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He signed a one-year, $2.5 million contract last offseason, and a similar deal this winter would be money well spent.

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