O’s agree to terms with Romero

The Orioles have agreed to terms on a Minor League contract with veteran reliever J.C. Romero, the club announced on Thursday, and Romero is expected to report to Triple-A Norfolk.

The 35-year-old lefty was released by the St. Louis Cardinals last week after posting a 10.13 ERA in eight innings spread over 11 games. Romero struggled mightily, particularly in his last three outings, giving up six hits, nine earned runs and two home runs while recording only four outs.

Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said Tuesday that the club was still actively seeking ways to upgrade and add depth to the pitching staff, and Romero fills a need being a lefty reliever –right now they can stash below — to go with Zach Phillips. The O’s bullpen currently has two lefties in Troy Patton and Dana Eveland.

Romero previously pitched for the Philadelphia Phillies from 2007-11 and posted a combined 2.73 ERA along with notable postseason success in ’08. He was suspended for the first 50 games of 2009 for taking a banned supplement, and was released by the Phillies in 2011. Romero then latched on with Minor League deals for the Washington Nationals, New York Yankees and Colorado Rockies –where he pitched to a 4.32 ERA in 11 big league games —before making the Cardinals club this spring. In 14 Major League seasons, Romero is 34-28 with a 4.15 ERA.

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