Former Phillie Notes: Giants cut Valdez; Nats ink Romero

Former Phillie Notes: Giants cut Valdez; Nats ink Romero
March 22, 2013, 3:30 pm
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One former Phillie found a job on Friday and another lost his.

The Nationals signed lefty reliever J.C. Romero to a minor-league deal, according to the Associated Press. The deal contains an invite to spring training, where eight games remain for the Nats after Friday.

The one thing Washington lacks is lefthanded relief depth in a division filled with lefty power hitters (Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Ike Davis, Jason Heyward, Freddie Freeman, Brian McCann). The Nats have Fernando Abad, who has pitched well this spring, and converted starter Zach Duke, who isn’t much of a specialist.

That’s where Romero comes into play. Despite his inability to throw strikes consistently, Romero still retires same-handed hitters with regularity. From 2010-12 lefties hit .252 off him with a .666 OPS. Those numbers are decent, though nowhere near where they were in 2008 with the Phillies (.102 opponents’ batting average, .346 OPS).

Giants cut Valdez
Wilson Valdez is a free agent after being released by the Giants, according to CSN Bay Area.

Valdez hit .194 this spring and played “unremarkable defense,” according to Giants beat writer Andrew Baggarly.

A fan favorite in Philly in 2010 and 2011, Valdez has struggled since leaving the Phils. He hit .206 with a .463 OPS for the Reds last season after batting .254/.300/.351 here.

To those thinking about a possible reunion, keep in mind the Phillies are already in a utility infield quandary, with Freddy Galvis, Kevin Frandsen and Yuniesky Betancourt fighting for two jobs.

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