SAN FRANCISCO Giants manager Bruce Bochy said Friday he will go into the season with Sergio Romo as his closer.
Romo took over the role late last season and finished 27 games, converting 14 of 15 save opportunities in the regular season. He also recorded the final out in all three postseason clinchers as the Giants won the World Series.
"He's earned that," Bochy said during media day. "Starting out, we've got help for him, but he'll get the lion's share of the saves early."
Romo will pitch for Mexico in the World Baseball Classic this spring, so the Giants will be without him for a stretch of spring training beginning March 4. With four other relievers and starter Ryan Vogelsong also participating in the WBC, the Giants will have 37 pitchers in camp.
Romo said he received his Team Mexico jersey Friday No. 54 and got a thrill out of trying it on.
"What a feeling it was to get it," Romo said. "Pretty awesome week for me so far."
On Wednesday, the right-hander, who will turn 30 on March 4, avoided salary arbitration and agreed to a two-year deal reportedly worth $9 million.
Panda watch Third baseman Pablo Sandoval was not at media day because of an illness, but he met briefly in the morning with Bochy.
"He looks fine," Bochy said. "We've got a little work to do there on the conditioning side, but that's normal at this time of year with a lot of guys."
Sandoval followed his World Series MVP performance by helping his team win a title in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League. He also plans to play for Venezuela in the WBC.
"The good thing is he played a lot of winter baseball under some big pressure," Giants general manager Brian Sabean said. "He got a lot of at-bats that he lost during the regular season.
"He does need to get in better shape from an overall sense, but we've still got plenty of time."
Posey update Sabean did not rule out discussing a long-term contract with catcher Buster Posey during spring training.
"That's a big decision on both parties' part to go forward with," Sabean said. "It's certainly very early in his career, too. But both parties are open."
Posey returned from a season-ending ankle injury in 2011 to win the National League MVP award last season, making 111 starts during the regular season at catcher and 29 at first base. He said Friday it was a "good balance."
Asked if Posey will catch more this season, Bochy said, "More likely it's going to be similar to last year. It worked well. He benefited from it, and the club did."
Posey's catching off-days last season often came with Tim Lincecum on the mound, leading some to wonder if there was a rift between them. All parties involved dismissed those notions Friday.
"Timmy and I have a great relationship," Posey said. "I think ultimately we both want the same thing, and that's to win. It's pretty much that simple."