Phillies Shuffle Bullpen Again, Demote Davis
Another day, another disappointing bullpen outing for the Phillies. The Phillies got swept by the Baltimore Orioles on Thursday. Once again the bullpen was lit up with seven more runs being charged to the Phillies bullpen. Only Jose Alvarez and utility player Neil Walker could put some zeros on the board. Thus, another move had to be made.
The Phillies announced that they optioned left-handed pitcher Austin Davis to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Davis entered Thursday's game with left-handed hitters batting 1.000 against him. The first batter Davis faced was a lefty and he was able to record an out. But Davis started the following and ultimately allowed two earned runs.
To replace Davis, the Phillies are calling up starting pitching prospect Jojo Romero. Romero spent the first part of Spring Training with the Phillies. A member of the 40-man roster, Romero split 2019 between Double-A Reading and Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Romero did not have the best 2019; he was a combined 7-9 with a 5.82 earned run average in 24 starts.
The Phillies have not said if he would be considered to start any games. The Phillies will need additional starters in coming weeks with several scheduled doubleheaders.
But, being on the 40-man roster, he was an easier choice than someone the Phillies would have to make room for. The Phillies had to designate for assignment the contracts of outfielder Nick Williams and pitcher Enyel De Los Santos in recent days to make room for other players.
Speaking of De Los Santos, the Phillies also announced that De Los Santos and Trevor Kelley cleared waivers and reported to the alternate site in Allentown.
The Phillies return to action on Friday night against the New York Mets. Starting pitcher Jacob deGrom, a perennial Cy Young Award contender, will not make his start against the Phillies tonight. The official diagnosis is "neck stiffness".