Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Jason Johnson, 2004 Topps Heritage #105

We're less than 72 hours away from Opening Day. The Orioles' 25-man roster is almost completely set, but there are still surprises to be found in Sarasota.

Remember Jason Johnson? Tall guy (6'6" to be exact), righty, spent the better part of five years in the O's starting rotation? He showed up in camp today after former teammate Brady Anderson got him a tryout. Johnson hasn't pitched in the big leagues since 2008. He got knocked around in a nine-game stint in the Yankee farm system in 2009, had shoulder surgery a year later, and was pummeled in eight starts for the independent Camden Riversharks in 2011. But he says he's fully healed, topping out at 92 miles per hour (a couple of mph below his original peak velocity), and looking for work again at age 38. He's already thrown for the Giants, but they couldn't find an opening for him. It remains to be seen if the Birds will welcome him back and send him through the minor league gauntlet; according to Roch Kubatko, he reached 90 mph in his tryout, which is a touch lower than he can supposedly throw.

Stranger things have happened, I guess.


Oriolephan said...

According Big Dan The More Pitchers the better Am I Right(besides if it was between Jo-Jo Reyes and Jason Johnson I'll Pick Jason)

Anonymous said...

I remember he wore an insulin pump when he pitched since he had diabetes. I could see at least taking a flyer out on the guy, he couldn't be that much of a risk, but the reward could be a win or two.

Kevin said...

Oriolephan - Yeah, Jo-Jo Reyes was proof that Andy MacPhail was out of ideas.

Anon - Yep, I can't imagine how difficult it is to be an athlete with a medical condition like that.