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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Padres Injury Update: Josh Johnson plays catch for first time since surgery


By on 10/16/2014 07:30:00 AM

The San Diego Padres won 77 games this season despite finishing 30th in the Major Leagues in runs scored. The strength of the team was a strong pitching staff that ranked fourth in ERA at 3.27. One pitcher who hopes to bolster the staff even further is Josh Johnson, who is coming off Tommy John surgery. The good news is that Johnson played catch for the first time in five months.


As reported by Corey Brock of MLB.com, Johnson had surgery in April and played catch for the first time in Las Vegas on October 9. It was a small, but significant step for Johnson, who will continue a throwing program this month and into next month.

The Padres signed Johnson as a free agent during last off season, but he lasted only 13 innings in Spring Training before being sidelined. Given that Johnson had less than seven starts, they have a $4 million option on him. They have until three days after the end of the World Series to decide whether or not to exercise the option.

The Padres appear to want to keep Johnson and Johnson wishes to stay in San Diego as well.
"I look at it [his time in San Diego] as unfinished business. It's been very tough to sit here and watch it all. But I think I've actually learned more this year than any other year in the past put together. And as far as the organization goes, I couldn't have hoped for anything better. They've been amazing. Not just the training staff, either. But everyone here … there's been a lot of support."
Should Johnson come back healthy next season with the Padres, he'll join a staff that includes Ian Kennedy, Tyson Ross, Andrew Cashner, Odrisamer Despaigne and Eric Stults.

Johnson, a nine-year Major League veteran, went 2-8 with a 6.20 ERA with the Blue Jays in 2013. He pitched his first eight seasons with the Marlins and was a 15-game winner with 191 strikeouts in 2009. Johnson has a career record of 58-45 with a 3.40 ERA in 170 games.


 
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