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Ex-SF giant Sergio Romo fills an analyst role at NBC Sports Bay Area

Recently retired pitcher Sergio Romo pumps up the San Francisco Giants fan base for their home opener against the Kansas City Royals, Friday, April 7, 2023, at Oracle Park in San Francisco, California. (Karl Mondon/Bay Area News Group)

SONOMA – Former San Francisco Giants reliever Sergio Romo used to watch pre- and post-game shows during his 15-year MLB career.

“Not that I cared what they said, but I did care what they said or how they said it,” Romo said Sunday before the Toyota/Save Mart 350 at Sonoma Raceway, where he drove the pace car for the NASCAR Cup Series event. “It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it, things like that.”

Now that Romo is an analyst for a number of Giants pre- and post-game shows on NBC Sports Bay Area, he is fully aware that not every honest opinion he has will be warmly received in the team’s clubhouse, where are always some of his friends.

However, Romo says his existing relationships with those players help soften any hard feelings they may have about something said on air. Romo spent nine seasons with the Giants from 2008 to 2016, winning three World Series titles and spending some time with the team during spring training last year.

“I’ve had conversations this season, through text messages or phone calls, with players and I’ve let them know, ‘Hey, this is what I was thinking.’ I know I said this on the air, and… I meant what I said. But there was also this, this and this,” Romo said. “I think there’s a fine line , and you want to respect the guys in the glove, because it’s not easy.

“But being on the other side and having to talk about it, I had to walk on my toes a little bit until now. It is also something new. But these guys are also my friends. I played with some of these guys; I’m still not that far away. So being able to talk to them and honestly tell them how I feel on a personal level means a lot because then they know that when I go on air, they know that I’m going to do what I can, to be honest. but at the same time, I’m not going to try to bury anyone.

“And when I have something more serious to say, I feel privileged to be able to say that I can text and call these guys and have those conversations on a friend level.”

The Giants entered Sunday at 32-33 and in third place in the National League West. Romo believes the Giants can go on a run once they discover their identity. He said younger players like Heliot Ramos and Patrick Bailey are starting to establish themselves, and older vets like Logan Webb and Mike Yastrzemski are finding their feet.

“It’s not surprising that the team has shown glimpses of greatness because they have the tools to be a very, very solid team,” Romo said, “a very competitive team.”

Romo, 41, officially retired from the Giants before the start of the 2023 season after playing in a Bay Bridge Series game at Oracle Park on March 27 last year. He said he received valuable advice on transitioning from player to broadcaster from JT Snow, Shawn Estes, George Kontos and Randy Winn.

“When they told me I have the personality for it, and if I’m confident on the mound, why can’t I be confident on stage?” Romo said. “I have always been confident in my own skin and what you see is what you get. So that helped me a lot.

“Slow down the mind too. The mind wants to go a million miles an hour, and you want to say it all at once. There are so many nice things to say on the air, I thought. Then you get to the moment, and the red light comes on, it’s like, ‘Wow.’