While reading in the main forum, someone suggested, when theorizing about rotation order that the #5 spot be a battle out of spring training between Romero/Happ/etc. to get it. Are people writing Ricky off as 2-3-4 type starter to the point that he's a fringe starter in our rotation? Is there any evidence to suggest that he's fallen off completely to the point where 2012 Romero is what to expect? I'm still a believer that he'll come to form to an extent, but not a complete bum. What is everyones thoughts or predictions on 2013 Romero?
I really do expect him to return to form. It's not as if he forgot to pitch (although it looked like that sometimes), it was clearly a mental problem. But I think having him not being forced to be a leader is going to do a lot for him, and there's going to be a lot less pressure on him, even if he disappoints again. I definitely wouldn't write Ricky off.
The pressure is off Ricky right now. He was looked upon to carry the whole team with all the injuries last season. With that and added pressure he put on himself after he began to struggle took over his head. Ricky will be fine.
I hope Ricky rediscovers his form, but I'm not sure what magic wand is going to do this for him. Batters didn't start hitting him because he developed control issues, he developed control issues because batters were hitting him, he started trying to be too fine with his pitches and he slowly became a head case. And they started hitting him because they were laying off Ricky's out pitch, the devastating breaking ball in the dirt, and just waited for something up in the strike zone. I don't see this as something that gets corrected simply by having the winter off or moving down in the rotation.
I'm not writing him off at all but I do think his issues are more complex and difficult to solve than many of us are suggesting.