Seranthony Dominguez is Key to Phillies’ 2020 Bullpen Success

Once upon a time, Seranthony Dominguez ran rampant on Major League hitters during his rookie season. His season was excellent, but it started out even stronger.

In his first 16 IP, Seranthony didn’t allow a single run. He allowed all of 5 baserunners; 3 hits, 1 walk, and 1 hit by pitch. Add 17 strikeouts into the mix and you get sheer dominance.

His first 2 earned runs came at the hand of Adam Morgan who couldn’t secure a 5-3 lead against the Cubs. In what was one of the Phillies’ worst losses of 2018, Morgan allowed a walk-off grand slam to Jason Heyward.

That aside, Dominguez looked like the young bullpen arm the Phillies needed. I was fully convinced of that as I wrote, not one, but two dramatic medieval retellings of Seranthony’s career.

Seranthony would finish 2018 with a 2.95 ERA. If 2019 had finished that way, the Phillies would have one less question mark in the pen.

Unfortunately, that’s not what happened. Seranthony’s first 3 games of 2019 were terrible. In 2.1 IP, he allowed 5 runs, 3 of which were earned. The rest of his season wasn’t nearly as bad. In 22.1 IP, Seranthony recorded a 2.82 ERA.

It was all for naught as Seranthony ended the season on the Injured List. A UCL injury put him out of action for 2019, but he’ll be ready for 2020.

The Phillies need Seranthony back at full capacity for next season. His fastball/ slider combination is as good as any other reliever in the league. He’s shown he’s a sub-3 ERA pitcher, but with potential for more.

New pitching coach Bryan Price should have a fun time working with Seranthonty. Price is noted as focusing on fastball command. In his first 2 seasons, Seranthony has averaged a bb/9 of 3.7. Any improvement on that could be a big factor in the young reliever’s success.

In 2019, the Phillies bullpen put up a 4.38 ERA as a unit, 16th in all of baseball. Only 2 playoff teams had a worse bullpen ERA: the Brewers and the Nationals.

If the Phillies want to see playoffs in 2020, they’ll need to get what they can out of Seranthony Dominguez.

Mandatory Credit: Joe Puetz-USA TODAY Sports

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