UPDATE: Dan Connolly of the Baltimore Sun hears that Johnson hasn’t signed with a team and is still in the process of making a decision.
7:35 p.m. ET: According to Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports, free agent reliever Jim Johnson has signed with an unidentified team. Yes, we have a mystery team on our hands, folks. The only thing we know right now is that it’s not the Orioles, so apparently they weren’t too impressed by his workout earlier today in Florida.
Johnson was released by the Athletics last week after he posted an awful 7.14 ERA with 28 strikeouts and 23 walks over 40 1/3 innings. Oakland is responsible for the remainder of his $10 million salary for this season, so he would only cost a prorated portion of the major league minimum with his new team.
Fellow second basemen Javier Baez of the Cubs and D.J. LeMahieu of the Rockies got into a disagreement in the top of the third inning of Sunday’s game at Coors Field over sign-stealing.
LeMahieu reached on a fielder’s choice ground out, then advanced to second base on Charlie Blackmon‘s single. While Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story were batting, Baez was concerned that LeMahieu was relaying the Cubs’ signs to his teammates. Baez decided to stand in front of LeMahieu to block any information he might have been giving to Arenado and Story. LeMahieu got irritated and the two jawed at each other for a bit. Umpires Vic Carapazza and Greg Gibson had to intervene to tell Baez to knock it off.
There has always been a back-and-forth with alleged sign-stealing. As long as teams aren’t using technology to steal signs, it’s fair game for players to relay information to their teammates about the opposing team’s signs. Last year, MLB determined the Red Sox went against the rules and used technology — an Apple watch in this case — to steal signs from the Yankees. Other teams in the past have been accused of using binoculars from the bullpen to steal signs. In this particular case with Baez and LeMahieu, there was no foul play going on, just Baez trying to make the Rockies cede what he perceived to be their slight competitive advantage.
The Cubs went on to beat the Rockies 9-7 on Sunday.