Trade deadline talk: Josh Johnson
July, 24, 2012
By Richard Durrett | ESPNDallas.com
Colby Lewis' season-ending injury could certainly alter things for the Texas Rangers at the trade deadline this season now that their top postseason pitcher the past two years won't be toeing the rubber in October. So we continue our look at trade possibilities for Texas a week out of the trade deadline.
The Miami Marlins are in sell mode, as evidenced by their willingness to trade Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante to the Detroit Tigers for prospects Monday, so would they consider trading pitcher Josh Johnson? They wouldn't be dealing Johnson when his value was at its highest and they could choose to keep him for 2013. But what if they made him available?
The Rangers have had interest in Johnson in past seasons. The 28-year-old missed most of last season with shoulder inflammation, but has stayed healthy in 2012. He hasn't put up the type of numbers that he has the past six seasons or so -- 6-7 with a 4.14 ERA in 20 starts -- but when he's right, he can shut down opposing lineups.
That was evident on Monday night, when he gave up no runs on one hit with nine strikeouts and no walks against the Atlanta Braves. But he left with a blister on his right middle index finger. He's expected to make his next start.
Johnson is clearly an intriguing option. If he can find a more consistent form, it could be a huge boost to the rotation. He had 15 wins in 2009 and 11 in 2010. He had a 2.30 ERA in 2010 in 28 starts with 186 strikeouts and 48 walks. That was before the shoulder issues.
If the Marlins deal him now, perhaps the Rangers could get him for a decent price. It's a risk in acquiring him in that he's been inconsistent this season. But he did show in June that he can put together a solid stretch. All five of his outings were quality starts and he had a 1.87 ERA with 33 strikeouts and 12 walks. Yet, he's also had three starts that weren't particularly solid in July.
Do you have any interest? I do. What are you willing to give up? Is Johnson worth looking into or do the Rangers need a bigger name with more proven success in 2012?