Orioles re-acquire J.C. Romero from Indians

J.C. Romero is back in the big leagues, with the Orioles. No, I don't really know, either. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

One of the many players who this year passed through the Norfolk Tides Transition Into Retirement program was J.C. Romero, the former Twin and Phillie who was actually jettisoned by the Cardinals on May 14 after 8 disastrous innings to begin the 2012 season. Romero hung around Norfolk until July 10, when he was granted his release by an opt-out clause, and latched on with the Indians organization, pitching in AAA Columbus.

No one cared when the Orioles stashed Romero in Norfolk and no one cared when he was released. But it seems we will have to find a reason to care now, because MASN's Roch Kubatko is reporting that the O's have acquired Romero from the Indians in exchange for AAA infielder Carlos Rojas.

Your first question is probably the same as mine: who is Carlos Rojas? The answer is that Rojas is 28, from Venezuela, and last year he had a .514 OPS between Bowie and Norfolk. This year he has a .533 OPS between Bowie and Norfolk. So, no, we won't miss Rojas.

On the other hand, here is yet another case where Dan Duquette is unafraid to grab a guy, use him for a little while and then probably toss him aside when they don't have room for him any more. Romero is a career reliever who'd pitched to a 2.74 ERA with a 0.96 WHIP in 25 games with the Tides. In his big league career that has spanned 14 seasons, he has thrown 657.1 IP and has a 4.15 ERA. He is a fresh arm, and in the opinion of at least one person has more to offer the Orioles than Miguel Socolovich.

As anyone who's watched Socolovich pitch in MLB can attest, it's not a high bar to clear. Romero can be stashed in the bullpen and used and if he's not terrible he'll hang around until someone better comes along. He is left-handed, and as the official Orioles press release that appeared while I was writing this article says, "Romero has held left-handed hitters to a .218/.313/.293 line in 1,121 plate appearances over his career." You can tell a lot about the party line from what they put on the press release, and that says, "Now we have a LOOGY!"

Welcome to Birdland, J.C. I wouldn't sign a lease if I were you, but good luck while you're here.

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