Rangers, Marlins talking Josh Johnson; price very high

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With four days left to go before the trade deadline, Josh Johnson’s status remains up in the air. ESPN’s Jayson Stark had a source tell him Wednesday that there was a “95 percent” chance that Johnson was staying put in Miami. USATODAY’s Bob Nightengale sees things differently, however.

Sources have told ESPN.com that the Marlins are asking for a team’s two or three best prospects in a Johnson trade, and that most teams have simply laughed it off and gone elsewhere. The Rangers apparently haven’t bolted so quick, though there’s still next to no chance that they’ll be giving up shortstop Jurickson Profar in a Johnson trade. If something does get done there, the top name involved figures to be third baseman Mike Olt.

Zach Davies replaces Gio Gonzalez on the Brewers roster

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Major League Baseball just announced that it has approved a roster substitution for the Milwaukee Brewers due to the ankle injury sustained by Gio Gonzalez: right-handed pitcher Zach Davies will take his place. In accordance with league rules, Gonzalez will be ineligible to return if the Brewers make it to the World Series.

That rule is designed to prevent roster gamesmanship such as having a pitcher fake an injury after he’s done being used in an effort to give a team a fresh arm in a short series. A second layer on that is an independent consult with the league, which may approve or disapprove the request based on the specific facts and circumstances of the case. In this case, Dr. Gary Green, MLB’s Medical Director, confirmed Gonzalez’s injury after communicating with the Brewers’ evaluating physician. Not that anyone can really suggest that Gonzalez was faking. The dude’s ankle went sideways.

That being said, this is a benefit to the Brewers at least for the short term. Davies did not have a fantastic season, going 2-7 with a 4.77 ERA in 13 starts and failing to make the Brewers’ initial postseason roster, but he is fresh — he hasn’t pitched since September 28 — which could prove very useful for Craig Counsell and the Brewers after last night’s 13-inning game.