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Friday, April 1, 2011

Scouting Report RHP Josh Johnson

Josh Johnson = Very Good.
For those of you who have been around this blog for a while, I reserved that last year for Roy Halladay and Tim Lincecum. Well, Josh Johnson deserves to be mentioned in the same breath as those guys. He's only 27 years old, and is in the 2nd year of his 4 year/39 million dollar contract he signed last year. The one caution about him is he was shut down in August with back and shoulder pain.

Josh Johnson is in his 7th major league season, and has been one of the best pitchers in baseball the last two years.. He was a 4th round pick out of high school in 2002. He had Tommy John Surgery in August of 2007, which limited his innings in both 2007 and 2008, and he has thrown 200 innings only once (2009).In 2009, he was 15-5, with a 3.23 ERA and 1.16 WHIP, and he followed it up with an even more impressive 2010 campaign: 11-6 (28 starts, 183 innings), 2.30 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.1 K/9 and 2.35 BB/9. Re-read those numbers again.  (28 starts, 183 innings), 2.30 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 9.1 K/9 and 2.35 BB/9. Also remember before the All-Star break his ERA was a shiny 1.70 (3.50 after). He is 33-12 since returning from Tommy John Surgery. He is a ground-ball pitcher who limits home runs.  For his career versus the Mets, he is 7-1 in 12 starts, with a 2.74 ERA and 1.13 WHIP. Last year he faced the Mets three times, including last opening day (he struggled throwing 5 innings, 4 runs while battling the flu and took the loss).
Josh Johnson is 6'7" and throws straight over the top, almost throwing straight down to the hitter. He is a three pitch pitcher, throwing a 93-97 mph fastball (95 mph average), a plus 88 mph slider with sharp and late bite (28% of pitches), and an occassional 87 mph change-up that sinks away from left-handers. He has increased his use of the slider over the past few years, and his velocity increased after coming back from Tommy John Surgery (pre-surgery he was throwing 92 mph). His fastball/slider combination is one of the best in the game, and he generates a ton of swings and misses, 11.8% last year, a career high (league average is 8.5%). He also a first pitch strike 65% of the time (league average 59%).

Josh Johnson is one of the top pitchers in the National League, and he will be tough to beat if he's on top of his game (if he can stay healthy).

That's not pretty and what is referred to as the "inverted W"

As a reminder, Long Live Shea Stadium will provide the opposing pitcher's scouting report each day before the game. Be sure to check back for the rest of the weekend starters (Nolasco and J Vasquez)


  1. he is an ok pitcher that can become good because 11-6 is only decent for a 3rd man in your rotation. He will become an ace when it becomes 17-3, the era is in the right area though, also 9k per 9 innings it very good, but if he gets up to 12 or 13 you have a very good pitcher. Lets be honest though if he becomes an ace who is capable of winning 20 games the Yankees will probably just use there money to get him.

  2. Thanks for the comment, but I have to disagree. Anyone who finishes in the top 5 of Cy Young Voting is likely to be considered an ace, especially with his numbers and stuff. Wins are fickle and not a true measure of a pitcher's performance.