Results tagged ‘ Josh Johnson ’

Hanley welcomes LeBron

Hanley Ramirez, the Marlins three-time All-Star shortstop and face of the franchise, extended a warm South Florida welcome to LeBron James.

h2rlebron.jpgShortly after James announced he was signing with the Miami Heat, Ramirez scribbled on a piece of paper, “Welcome LeBron.”

The addition of James brings one of the biggest names in sports to South Florida.

The Marlins feature a couple of All-Stars in Ramirez and Josh Johnson, a 6-foot-7 right-hander who played basketball in high school.

Marlins outfielder Cody Ross says he played point guard in high school. He couldn’t dunk.

“But I could get the rim,” said Ross, who is listed as 5-foot-10 in the media guide.

Reliever Burke Badenhop grew up in Ohio, and said he averaged 14 points and seven rebounds a game playing high school basketball.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Marlins open to making moves

The deeper they fall in the standing, the greater the chance the Marlins will be open to making moves.

In fact, there are rumbings from within the organization that they may be willing to listen to offers for just about everyone not named Josh Johnson or Hanley Ramirez. Besides those two — plus players who are not yet in their arbitration years — the club could be ready to make some changes.

There are indications that Ricky Nolasco, who has one year remaining in arbitration, could be dealt for the right price. The Marlins are in no rush to move the 27-year-old right-hander, but they would certainly listen to what is available.

Jorge Cantu is eligible for free agency after the season. While the Marlins are high on the veteran, who has been a steady run producer, they might not be in position to sign him to a multi-year deal if his salary reaches more than $10 million. Cantu appears to be the most likely Marlin to be moved before the end of the season.

Dan Uggla and Cody Ross — like Nolasco — have one year of arbitration remaining. There is no immediate urgency to trade either player. But both may bring back some parts to build upon for the future.

Nate Robertson, acquired late in Spring Training from Detroit, also could be an attractive trade piece should the Marlins be out of the race by the end of the month.

Veteran Wes Helms, a free agent after the season, may also draw interest on the trade market. The Marlins are high on Helms, and envision him someday being a coach in their system. Even if he is traded, the club may look to sign him back in the offseason.

The team certainly is looking for bullpen help, but that’s not the only area they hope to address. Offensively, they are hoping to become more balanced and less streaky.

– Joe Frisaro

 

 

Bullpen options for Baltimore

For the Marlins to get back over .500 and into realistic playoff contention, they need to solidify their bullpen.

There are more unanswered questions, even after Josh Johnson’s brilliant eight-inning start on Sunday in a 4-1 win over the Rays.

When Johnson is on the mound, the bullpen pretty much gets a day off. Only closer Leo Nunez was used to polish up the ninth inning for his 15th save in 18 chances.

After the game, the Marlins announced they had designated Jorge Sosa for assignment and optioned Jay Buente to Triple-A New Orleans.

The club has yet to announce which two relievers would be getting called up for their series at Baltimore, which begins on Tuesday.

Burke Badenhop doesn’t appear to be one of them. Badenhop opened the season with the Marlins, but was optioned to Triple-A last month. Jose Veras, who is not on the 40-man roster, also was on the Opening Day roster before being designated for assignment in April.

If the Marlins stay with pitchers on their 40-man roster, there is a candidate to keep an eye on. Jose Ceda, the 23-year-old who was acquired from the Cubs for Kevin Gregg after the 2008 season.

Now, Ceda missed all of 2009 with a shoulder injury. He was in Spring Training this season for a little while with the big league club.

Ceda is working his way back into shape at low Class A Greensboro, where he has thrown eight innings with five strikeouts and one walk. His ERA is 4.50, but three of the four runs he allowed came on June 5.

If Ceda doesn’t get the call as soon as Tuesday, he is a promising hard-thrower who likely will make his big league debut sometime this season. Ceda threw 30 innings at Double-A Tennessee in the Cubs system in 2008.

He remains a possibility to help the bullpen in the near future.

Veras, meanwhile, has appeared in 23 games at New Orleans. He’s struck out 35 and walked 15 in 28 1/3 innings. Veras pitched a scoreless inning on Sunday, striking out three, but walking two.

With Sosa designated for assignment, Veras could be added to the 40-man and active roster for Tuesday, if the team goes with him.

Kris Harvey, at Class A Jupiter, and Brett Sinkbeil, at Triple-A New Orleans, are other right-handed relievers who are on the 40-man roster. They may be in the mix, if not immediately then something this year.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Hanley out of lineup Sunday

Hanley Ramirez tweaked his right hamstring while running out a double in the eighth inning in Saturday night’s 9-8 loss in 11 innings to the Rays at Sun Life Stadium.

Ramirez was out of the starting lineup on Sunday, but he was available to pinch-hit. The All-Star shortstop came in early for treatment.

The Marlins are off on Monday, and there is a chance he can be in the lineup on Tuesday at Baltimore.

Sunday lineup:

1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Dan Uggla, 2B

4) Ronny Paulino, C

5) Cody Ross, CF

6) Wes Helms, 3B

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Brian Barden, SS

9) Josh Johnson, P

– Joe Frisaro

 

Marlins-Rangers lineups

The Marlins send Josh Johnson to the mound on Tuesday night in the Sun Life Stadium debut of rookie Mike Stanton.

The Rangers are going with C.J. Wilson.

 

 

 

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1) Elvis Andrus, SS

2) Michael Young, 3B

3) Ian Kinsler, 2B

4) Vladimir Guerrero, RF

5) Josh Hamilton, LF

6) Justin Smoak, 1B

7) Max Ramirez, C

8) Julio Borbon, CF

9) C.J. Wilson, P

 

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1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Ronny Paulino, C

9) Josh Johnson, P

– Joe Frisaro

 

How JJ makes more of less

Even among power pitchers, Marlins ace Josh Johnson ranks up there with the best of him.

The 6-foot-7, 250-pound right-hander repeatedly brings the heat when he’s on the mound. His fastball, according to www.fangraphs.com, is the fourth highest on average of any starter in the big leagues. The average of all JJ’s fastballs this season is 94.6 mph.

 
JoshJohnsonawe.jpgPure heat, however, isn’t necessarily the formula for success. Yes, being overpowering enables a pitcher to get away with more mistakes. But to be truly the best of the best, Johnson is aware that he must be better at subtraction with his off-speed pitches.

A good sign for Johnson is when his slider is in the neighborhood of 85-86 mph. The thing with Johnson is, because he throws so hard, even his slider can be 90-91 mph.

Why the benefit of the 10 mph drop in speed off his fastball? Because it is harder to hitters to time.

A case in point came in Johnson’s last start, when he beat the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park on June 10. In the first inning, JJ faced runners on second and third with two outs. On a 2-2 pitch, he struck out Jayson Werth with an 85 mph slider, after he threw a 96 mph fastball for a ball.

The more Johnson learns about subtracting on his slider, the better he will be. At 26, JJ is still learning the finer points of the game.

Hitters have shown they can foul off his 91 mph slider, running up JJ’s pitch count. When he gets them to wave at 85 mph, he becomes virtually unhittable.

A big reason why Nationals sensation Stephen Strasburg is so effective is he throws an 86 mph curveball to complement a 99 mph fastball.

JJ is very skilled at adjusting during games. He is working on spinning the baseball  more to reduce velocity. A good indicator on if it is working is if you see the velocity on his slider in the 85 mph range. 

– Joe Frisaro

 

 

Halladay-Johnson set for Thursday

Washed out on Wednesday, the Marlins and Phillies were back at it again on Thursday at Citizens Bank Park.

The same pitching matchup that was slated for Wednesday was just pushed back a day.

A pair of aces are on the mound. The Marlins are going with Josh Johnson, while the Phillies are starting Roy Halladay.

When he last faced Florida, on May 29, Halladay threw the 20th perfect game in MLB history. Johnson, meanwhile, gave up one unearned run in seven innings, suffering the loss.

 

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1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Ronny Paulino, C

9) Josh Johnson, P

 

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1) Shane Victorino, CF

2) Placido Polanco, 3B

3) Chase Utley, 2B

4) Ryan Howard, 1B

5) Jayson Werth, RF

6) Raul Ibanez, LF

7) Wilson Valdez, SS

8) Carlos Ruiz, C

9) Roy Halladay, P

– Joe Frisaro

 

Rained out Wednesday

For the second time this season, the Marlins have had a game postponed because of rain.

Wednesday’s game at Philadelphia was washed out. No makeup date has been set yet. But a possible date for a doubleheader will be on Sept. 6, when the Marlins return to Philadelphia.

The Marlins rotation has now shuffled for the new few days.

Josh Johnson, who was scheduled to pitch on Wednesday, will throw on Thursday. The Phillies are countering with Roy Halladay.

The Marlins weekend rotation at Tampa Bay now will be Anibal Sanchez (Friday), Ricky Nolasco (Saturday) and Chris Volstad (Sunday). Nate Robertson is being skipped one start, and he is available in the bullpen.

The Marlins previously were rained out on April 23 at Colorado. They made that up on April 24 with a doubleheader.

– Joe Frisaro

 

Stanton to face Halladay

Coming off his three hit MLB debut, Mike Stanton will face a bigger challenge on Wednesday night. That is, if the game is played. It’s been raining all day in Philadelphia, and more is expected tonight.

If the game moves forward, the Marlins will face the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.

Roy Halladay is set to throw for the Phillies. On May 29 in Miami, Halladay threw the 20th perfect game in MLB history.

Josh Johnson gets the nod for the Marlins.

After going 3-for-5 on Tuesday, Stanton became the youngest player to get three hits in his MLB debut since Danny Ainge of NBA fame went 3-for-4 in his first game on May 21, 1979, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Stanton was 20 years, 212 days. Ainge was 20 years, 65 days.

 

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1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Mike Stanton, RF

8) Ronny Paulino, C

9) Josh Johnson, P

 

– Joe Frisaro

 

 

Marlins-Brewers Thursday lineups

Josh Johnson takes the mound on Thursday night as the Marlins wrap up their four-game set with the Brewers at Sun Life Stadium. The Marlins look to take three of the four games, after they lost 7-4 on Wednesday.

 

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1) Rickie Weeks, 2B

2) Craig Counsell, 3B

3) Ryan Braun, LF

4) Prince Fielder, 1B

5) Corey Hart, RF

6) Carlos Gomez, CF

7) Alcides Escobar, SS

8) Jonathan Lucroy, C

9) Chris Capuano, P

 

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1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Gaby Sanchez, 1B

3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Cody Ross, CF

7) Ronny Paulino, C

8) Brett Carroll, RF

9) Josh Johnson, P

– Joe Frisaro

 

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