Giants remove Sergio Romo from closer role

Jason O. Watson

San Francisco will use a committee of relievers in the ninth inning.

San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy has "tweaked" his bullpen strategy by removing Sergio Romo from the closer's role after he blew the save in a 7-3 loss to the Reds on Saturday night.

Bochy said Romo will continue to help the team get "the final six outs," but the ninth inning will be handled by a committee of left-hander Jeremy Affeldt and righty Santiago Casilla, according to SFGate.com's Henry Schulman.

Romo, 31, has 22 saves this season, but his ERA currently sits at 5.17 and he's already blown as many saves as he did in 2013 (five). His WHIP is actually lower than it was last season at 1.04, but his peripheral stats -- ERA predictors like FIP and xFIP -- suggest that he is in the midst of his worst season as a professional.

Giants fans might find that conclusion rather obvious. Romo's struggles have coincided with the team's diminishing division lead over the Dodgers, which might have aided Bochy in making the decision to mix things up.

Affeldt has a 1.33 ERA and 1.00 WHIP in 27 innings, and Casilla has a 1.17 ERA and 0.88 WHIP in 30⅔ innings. The two aren't likely to be used according to traditional platoon splits. Both are excellent against right handed hitters, but Casilla has been better against lefties so far this season, so Bochy could look to employ more sophisticated matchup data in his new committee.

Romo will be a free agent after the season. As far as his financial future is concerned, there might not be a more inopportune time for him to begin to struggle.

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