Toronto Blue Jays News

Blue Jays: Five bold predictions for the 2021 season

Feb 23, 2021; Dunedin, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays players including George Springer (left) warm up during spring training. Mandatory Credit: Toronto Blue Jays/Handout Photo via USA TODAY Sports
Feb 23, 2021; Dunedin, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays players including George Springer (left) warm up during spring training. Mandatory Credit: Toronto Blue Jays/Handout Photo via USA TODAY Sports /
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Aug 24, 2020; St. Petersburg, Florida, USA; Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Jordan Romano (68) throws a pitch during the ninth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 24, 2020; St. Petersburg, Florida, USA; Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Jordan Romano (68) throws a pitch during the ninth inning against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports /

Jordan Romano will be the closer by the end of the season

While I was very excited to see the Blue Jays sign Kirby Yates this offseason, I think it’s only delaying the inevitable in their bullpen. It won’t happen right away, as I think Yates will have the job to start the year, but I believe it’s a matter of time before Jordan Romano starts a lengthy run as the Blue Jays closer.

That’s not to suggest that I don’t believe in Yates, as that’s not the case at all. I have faith in his ability as long as he’s healthy, and he’ll make the bullpen stronger. However, what I saw from Romano in 2020 was enough to convince me that he’s destined to finish games off for the Blue Jays. He has the skill set with a powerful fastball, and a strong slider as a secondary offering. More importantly, he brings the right energy to thrive in the role.

Just watching the 27-year-old stalking around the bullpen in anticipation is enough to get fans excited for the bullpen doors to open. It was a small sample size for the Markham, Ontario native in 2020, but he thrived as a late-inning option with a 1.23 ERA and a 0.886 WHIP over 14.2 innings, striking out 21 batters and picking up a pair of saves. If not for an injury that sidetracked his solid performance, he might already have the role locked down.

For now he’ll be available as a late-inning option along with Yates, Rafael Dolis, and possibly others. The Blue Jays should have a strong collection of relievers, but none of them bring the excitement to the mound in the way that Romano does. And since he won’t be a free agent until after the 2025 season, I believe this year will be the start of something great in the Blue Jays’ bullpen.

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