Probably the biggest, most exciting, off-season move last year for the Padres was the acquisition of Josh Johnson. Everyone was stoked, everyone. The GM at the time Josh Byrnes surprised a few of us and suddenly it felt like the Padres might have a decent team, one that could win more than half their games. At very least they'd try to win half the games. That didn't happen.
Before the season even started Josh Johnson was injured. Johnson left a Spring Training game after a drop in velocity in the 5th inning. He experienced swelling afterwards and the Padres held their breath. Byrnes said "Sometimes these symptoms are nothing and sometimes they're Tommy John." We'll after the symptoms didn't improve and Johnson got a second opinion it was decided that it was indeed time for a second Tommy John.
Last Thursday, without fanfare and far from a big league ballpark, Josh Johnson picked up a baseball and did the one thing he had waited five long months to do.
He threw it to someone.
"I'm very excited. … It's been a long time," Johnson said recently.
I know how that feels. I've been having back issues due to a herniated disc since February. Today for the first time in 9 months I jogged. It was terrifying, exciting and tiring. I thought for sure I'd instantly be re-injured. I stopped after about a quarter mile and we'll see if I can get out of bed in the morning, but for now it feels like I've made a big step to feeling normal again.
If all goes well with Johnson's recovery, the Padres could take a $4 million risk on him and exercise their option.
The Padres hold a $4 million option for 2015 on Johnson because he made fewer than seven starts -- credit former general manager Josh Byrnes for adding that wrinkle to the deal.
I wouldn't mind at all if they Padres dropped $4 million of their money on Johnson. Do it already.