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Josh Byrnes talks about Josh Johnson trade, pitching depth and Chase Headley

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA

Josh Byrnes interview with Lee "Hacksaw" Hamilton, Jay Paris and Laura McKeeman

  • Byrnes says the Padres have been tracking Josh Johnson all along.  "The more he struggled, the more we scouted him."  The Padres aggressively went after Johnson as their primary target. 
  • Johnson is a power pitcher.  He's lost some speed on his fastball since the 2010 season but he has a terrific slider and pretty good curve ball.  The Padres will work on Johnson's change up with him.  At his best, there was no better stuff in the National League.
  • "Our starting pitching has come such a long way.  I'm feeling really good about it."  Byrnes isn't sure if they'll keep the current pitching depth or use it to trade for other pieces.  "Teams that improve in the standings do it with pitching."  Byrnes now thinks that the Padres have the pitching to compete with the elite teams in the National League.
  • "The more he struggled, the more we scouted him." -Josh Byrnes on Josh Johnson
    Joe Wieland and Cory Luebke are both pitching to hitters now after their Tommy John surgery.  Luebke was emerging as a front of the rotation starter before he got hurt.
  • Byrnes is getting the sense that Cameron Maybin is finally feeling good after a year of nagging injuries.  "He's starting to get that look in his eye like he can't wait for Spring Training."
  • It was hard for Byrnes to cut down the 40 man roster.  All four players they designated for assignment were good players.  Byrnes doubts any of them will clear waivers.
  • Byrnes says he hasn't really received any calls from GMs about trading Chase Headley.  The possibility of trading Chase is a non-event.  The Padres are trying to win in 2014.  The scenario is they either sign him to a long term deal, trade him or let him play out his contract and become a free agent at the end of the season.

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