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Marlins injury updates: Romo day-to-day with right knee contusion

The veteran reliever limped off the field in the ninth inning Thursday night, but the injury news is not as severe as first feared.

Washington Nationals v Miami Marlins Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

With just over a month until the trade deadline, Sergio Romo is an obvious trade chip for the Marlins. That’s why team decision-makers most definitely winced when they saw the experienced relieverSergio Romo tangle with Washington’s Trea Turner at first base and hit the ground hard in the ninth inning of Thursday’s 8-5 loss.

The right-hander would try and walk it off, but faced only one more batter—giving up a run-scoring single by Adam Eaton—before being pulled from the game. He walked gingerly to the dugout.

Luckily for Miami, Romo only sustained a left knee contusion and is being closely monitored. We may even see him pitch later on in this weekend’s home series against the Phillies.

Romo is one of the team’s better and most consistent relievers, posting a 4.66 ERA and 1.34 WHIP over 29.0 IP. He ranks third among qualified Marlins relievers in both categories. If you take out Romo’s two four-run meltdowns on 3/29 against the Rockies and 6/9 against the Braves, those ERA and WHIP numbers drop to 2.28 and 1.12, respectively. He has also successfully closed 14 out of 15 save opportunities so far in 2019.

Boosting his stock, Romo has vast playoff experience, having pitched 23 13 total innings during four postseason runs with the Giants earlier in his career. Three of those resulted in him winning a big ol’ ring.

World Series - San Francisco Giants v Kansas City Royals - Game Seven Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Speaking of the World Series, Romo has literally been untouchable, posting a perfect 0.00 ERA with three saves over six innings with a 15.0 K/9 and 0.50 WHIP. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see a team like the Minnesota Twins put up a strong effort to try and acquire that kind of clutch production—their bullpen ERA (4.29) is 15th in baseball, and last among the division leaders.

What could a return look like if Romo is, as assumed, dealt at the deadline? Maybe slightly better than for the trade of Brad Ziegler last season (pitching prospect Tommy Eveld), but not as good as the haul for David Phelps in 2017 (Pablo López, Mariners No. 6 prospect Brayan Hernandez, Brandon Miller, and Lukas Schiraldi). Compared to Ziegler last year, Romo is two years younger while earning a fraction of Ziegler’s salary less over the course of the season. Romo currently boasts inferior numbers, but may still land the Marlins a team's Top 30 prospect, perhaps some international bonus slot money too if a bidding way ensues.

Whatever the case may be, it has been fun watching Romo mentor the young pitching staff and goof around at the same time.

Fish Stripes original GIF

It'll be sad to see him leave, but hopefully it will help this rebuild take another step forward.

More Injury Updates

  • LHP Caleb Smith (left hip inflammation) is expected to make his second and final minor league rehab start this weekend. The Marlins haven’t announced which affiliate that will be with.
  • C Jorge Alfaro (concussion) is eligible to be activated from the 7-day IL on Friday. He has been with the team throughout the past week, indicating that he may be close to 100%. Alfaro is slashing .261/.312/.419 with nine home runs in 59 games this season.
  • RHP Nick Neidert (meniscus), the reigning Marlins Minor League Pitcher of the Year, is throwing off a mound, according to Michael Hill. Still no timetable for his return to MiLB games, though.
  • OF Tristan Pompey, having just recently rejoined High-A Jupiter, dealt with another injury scare on Thursday:

Pompey was the No. 24 Marlins prospect on our updated Fish Stripes Top 30 list.

  • RHP Josh Roberson completed two scoreless innings for the Gulf Coast League Marlins on Wednesday.

He began the season with Low-A Clinton, but had been on the shelf the past two-and-a-half months. A 12th-round draft pick in 2017 and Tommy John surgery survivor, Roberson owns a 1.03 career earned run average in 61 innings pitched.