Josh Johnson finally ruled out for rest of season

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It’s been pretty clear for a long time that Josh Johnson wouldn’t throw another meaningful pitch this season, but it took until Thursday for the Marlins to make it official.

“You rewind this whole thing we thought it was gonna be a two-week thing and that was four months ago,” Marlins baseball operations president Larry Beinfest said.

Indeed, Johnson has been on the DL since May 21 with right shoulder inflammation.  He’s gone without a major setback since, but he also hasn’t progressed nearly as the Marlins hoped.  He’s just getting back on a mound now, and while the Marlins might have been tempted to try to aim for a late-September return as a reliever if they were still in the race, there’s certainly no point to trying it now.

Johnson, in the second year of a four-year, $39 million contract, will make $13.75 million each of the next two seasons.  He’ll probably be worth the money if healthy, but he’s had just one season as a major leaguer in which he’s made 30 starts.  He was 3-1 with a 1.64 ERA in nine starts before getting hurt this year.

Watch: Christian Yelich continues to make a case for NL MVP repeat

Christian Yelich
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Christian Yelich simply can’t be stopped. The Brewers outfielder (and defending NL MVP) entered Saturday’s game with a league-leading 11 home runs after swatting two against the Dodgers on Friday night, then clubbed another two homers in the first six innings of Saturday’s game.

The first came on a 2-1 pitch from the Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu, who lobbed a changeup toward the bottom of the strike zone before it was lifted up and out to center field for a solo home run in the third inning.

While Chase Anderson and Alex Claudio held down the fort against the Dodgers’ lineup, Yelich prepared for his second blast in the sixth inning — this one a 421-foot double-decker on a first-pitch curveball from Ryu.

Yelich’s 13 home runs not only gave him a stronger grip on the league’s leaderboard, but helped him tie yet another franchise record, too. Per MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy, he’s tied with Prince Fielder for the most home runs hit by a Brewers player in a single month, and sits just one home run shy of tying Álex Rodríguez’s 2007 record for most home runs hit within any club’s first 22 games of the season.

It may be far too early to predict which players will finish first in the MVP races this fall, but there’s no denying Yelich has already set himself apart from the competition. Through Saturday’s performance, he’s batting .361/.459/.880 with a 1.329 OPS and MLB-best 31 RBI across 98 PA so far.