Phillies 2021 Spring Training Preview: Pitching Staff

Aaron Nola #27 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Aaron Nola #27 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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JoJo Romero #79 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /

JoJo Romero

JoJo Romero comes into the 2021 season with expectations around him. You may wonder why someone who had an ERA at 7.59 would have some expectations on them for the next season.

With Romero, his ERA would really skew people’s opinion on him as there are other numbers to tell you he’s was not as bad of a pitcher as you may think.

With a 3.66 FIP and a 3.53 xFIP, it is a little safe to say that Romer’s ERA was very inflated, not to mention his BABIP was .375 so he was getting very unlucky as a pitcher during his 10.2 innings as a pitcher in 2020.

Another very encouraging part of Romero’s 2020 was his strikeout and walk per 9s. He averaged 8.44 strikeouts per 9 innings and 1.69 walks.

These are both really good and really show you why he can be a really solid pitcher in the Phillies bullpen in 2021. He may not have the super high expectations like for other guys next, but there are expectations Romero puts together a really solid 2021.

Connor Brogdon

Another promising young reliever Connor Brogdon is next. The expectations are even higher on Brogdon because his traditional and advanced stats look very promising.

For how bad the Phillies bullpen was in 2020 there were guys who we could see being dependable in 2021, and one of them is Brogdon.

Brogdon in 2020 had a 3.97 ERA, a FIP at 4.96, and an xFIP at 3.22. Not to mention he put up a great xERA at 2.42.

There is one thing that is extremely promising for Brogdon and that’s his strikeouts per 9 at 13.50. The best part is that is his way of pitching he is looking to strike you out and has never dropped below 10 strikeouts per 9 in his Minor League career.

The one concerning thing about all of this is his .105 BABIP which could prove Brogdon was a lucky pitcher in 2020. While he has never had an insane BABIP, it was never this good in years past so maybe we need to expect a few more hits given up in 2021.

Even with this being the case it is not like he will carry a significant role as a late-game situation pitcher for them in 2021. Similar to Romero he will be pitching more in the middle innings but with Brogdon there is potential he gets some late-inning work.

If worst comes to worst with the Phillies bullpen in 2021, we could see some Brogdon late innings for this team to close out games, and that may not be a bad thing at all.