Tuesday, April 3, 2012
Jason Johnson, 2004 Topps Heritage #105
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.