Guys, you’re not gonna believe this, but Josh Johnson is hurt:
Nothing new for Johnson, of course. When he’s healthy he can be dominant, but since becoming a regular in 2006, Johnson has had Tommy John surgery and shoulder problems and other random ailments which have led to a lot of lost seasons. If this is another one — his last under contract — he’s going to be hard pressed to even find a job next year.
You’ll be shocked to know that the Blue Jays have claimed a player off waivers.
This time it’s left-hander Aaron Laffey, who was designated for assignment by the Mets last week and pitched for the Blue Jays last season before they dropped him from the 40-man roster.
Laffey had a 4.56 ERA in 100 innings for Toronto last year and has a 4.44 ERA in 484 career innings overall, so he’s basically a standard fifth starter/long reliever. He was dropped by the Mets after allowing eight runs in 10 innings.
Shaun Marcum has yet to make his season debut due to nerve inflammation in his neck, but he’s inching closer to joining the Mets’ rotation.
According to Marc Carig of New York Newsday, Marcum tossed no-hit innings this afternoon in an extended spring training game in Port St. Lucie, Florida. The veteran right-hander threw a total of 41 pitches and struck out five batters.
Mets manager Terry Collins previously said that they want Marcum to get stretched out to around 90 pitches before being activated from the disabled list, so he figures to need two more rehab outings. That means left-hander Aaron Laffey will likely stick in the rotation for the time being.
Marcum, 31, posted a 3.70 ERA and 109/41 K/BB ratio in 124 innings over 21 starts with the Brewers last season. He signed a one-year deal with the Mets this winter which includes $4 million guaranteed.