Fernando Romero lived up to the hype by pitching 5 2/3 scoreless innings to help the Twins beat the Blue Jays 4-0 in his MLB debut on Wednesday.
The 23-year-old right-hander's fastball consistently pounded the catcher's mitt at 98 mph. One of his nasty heaters was clocked at 98.6 mph, the fastest pitch a Twins starter has thrown since pitching tracking began in 2008, according to MLB.com.
Manager Paul Molitor has said that Romero has "high-end starter" potential, and he definitely looked the part as he showcased a nasty 87 mph slider and a hard, sinking changeup to go along with his overpowering fastball.
Most important was that Romero, who finished with five strikeouts, pitched with moxie, getting out of jams in the 2nd, 4th and 5th innings.
He had inning-ending strikeouts in two of the jams and then induced a double play to end the fifth.
The win is just the third for Minnesota in their last 15 games.
Up next, the Twins start a 10-game road Thursday with the first of four games in Chicago against the White Sox.