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Jordan Romano Should Close For the Blue Jays

Jordan Romano should close for the Blue Jays. Romano’s ability to miss bats puts him in the prime position for the closing spot. Among active relievers, Romano’s whiff percentage is in the 97th percentile. His strikeout percentage is in the 97th percentile.

Fastball

Jordan Romano’s fastball averages 96.5 mph. He uses this pitch 38.4 percent of the time, a sharp drop from the 63.3 percent usage in 2019. His velocity also saw a large jump, averaging 96.5 mph, an increase from the average of 94.6 a year earlier. His whiff percentage on his fastball is 41.7 percent, and he uses it as a put-away pitch 43.8 percent of the time.

In addition, Romano’s location of his fastball is up-and-in to hitters. This location has helped Romano not give up a hit on his fastball. It also helps Romano with his perceived velocity. A pitch up-and-in to a hitter makes the ball appear to come in faster than it is.

Romano’s fastball movement sits about league average. His fastball drop is 12.5 inches, with a 5.5-inch break. This is one reason why Romano has thrown his fastball less, as it is straighter. However, with his uptick in velocity, as well as changing pitch location, his fastball has become more effective.

Slider

Romano’s slider has become his weapon of choice against hitters. Romano throws his slider in 61.8 percent of the time. His velocity averages 88.7 mph, an increase from last year’s 84.7. Romano has given up three hits off his slider, two singles and a home run. Romano’s whiff percentage on his slider is 39.1 percent, and he uses it as a put-away pitch 28.6 percent of the time.

.Romano’s average vertical break is 35.4 inches, with 3.6 inches of horizontal break. This has helped his chase rate, as hitters are chasing his pitches 31.8 percent of the time, an increase of 4.1 percent. In addition, Romano’s slider causes opposing hitters to hit the ball in the ground, the average launch angle being -10 degrees.

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