Ask anyone that knows a little something about the Phillies and they’ll likely agree that the premiere left-hander out of the team’s bullpen has become Antonio Bastardo. In recent years that title could have gone to JC Romero, but not any longer.
As the 25-year-old Bastardo has matured, he has developed into a go-to guy on the Phillies pitching staff. As Romero, who turns 35-years-old at the end of next week, has aged, he has lost velocity and his ability to dominate opposing batters.
Romero held opponents to a .191 batting average in his first 4 seasons with the Phillies, from 2007-2010. This year, things are much different as Romero has served up a .283 batting average against in 17 appearances.
Prior to the 2011 season, Bastardo had held opponents to a .264 batting average in 31 Major League games over 2 seasons. But in 17 games this year, batters have posted a significantly lower .145 average against the Dominican Republic native.
When Romero stopped through Lakewood a couple weeks back, prior to being activated from the disabled list, I asked him for his thoughts on Bastardo’s progress. Check out the media player below to hear exclusive audio of what JC had to say about that as well as other topics.
Jay Floyd is PhilliesNation’s minor league insider. You can read more from Jay by visiting his site, PhoulBallz.com.