Sal Romano got a one-start call up in April and things didn’t quite go as planned in his big league debut. He only made it through three innings in that game. He went back to Triple-A after the game and a few weeks later hit the disabled list with a shoulder injury that sidelined him for the following five weeks.
When he returned from the disabled list he made five starts for Louisville before returning to the big leagues on July 6th. He pitched well, allowing two runs over 5.0 innings with a walk and six strikeouts, but went back to Triple-A after the game. He made a spot start there before returning to the Majors on the 18th to face the Diamondbacks. Romano would struggle in that start, walking five with three strikeouts while allowing six earned in 4+ innings pitched.
Perhaps given a bode of confidence that his next start wasn’t a make-or-break game, manager Bryan Price told the media that Sal Romano was in the rotation for the time being and would get time to show what he’s got. Whether that had anything to do with his outing or not, I don’t know, but the 23-year-old right hander had things working today against the Marlins.
Sal Romano allowed one earned run in 6.0 innings on three hits and a walk. He also struck out seven batters in the game. He threw 66 strikes on 98 pitches and recorded six ground outs with two fly outs. Throwing plenty of strikes will usually help a pitcher quite a bit.
The biggest difference for Sal Romano on Sunday afternoon though was probably that he used his change up in the game. In the previous three big league starts the righty threw a combined five change ups, including a game against the Rockies where he didn’t throw a single one. Against the Marlins he threw eight change ups. Half of them went for strikes. That may not seem like much, but it gave the hitters an entirely different look and something to think about instead of just worrying about fastball or slider.
Here’s a quick look at his pitch breakdown during the game: