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Still acting cheap, Marlins decline to offer Johnson four-year deal

Nov 20, 2009, 7:14 PM EDT

The wheels were set in motion for Josh Johnson to join a sterling class of free agent starters in two years when he and the Marlins reached an impasse in contract talks on Friday.
Agent Matt Sosnick told ESPN.com that he and Johnson were using the four-year, $38 million contract that Zack Greinke signed a year ago as a framework for a new deal with the Marlins. Florida, though, was only willing to guarantee Johnson three years.
If the Marlins could have signed Johnson to the Greinke deal, it would have been a bargain. With a career ERA of 3.40 in 481 1/3 innings, Johnson has a better track record than Greinke did entering 2009. He went 15-5 with a 3.23 ERA and a 191/68 K/BB ratio last season, and that was as a groundball pitcher working in front of a poor infield defense. He allowed just 14 homers. His 3.06 FIP (Fielder Independent Pitching) was the seventh-best mark in baseball.
Since they control him for two more years and they expect to contend next season, there’s little reason for the Marlins to trade Johnson this winter. Still, they could if bowled over with an offer. If Johnson were a free agent, there’s little doubt that he’d land a bigger contract than any available pitcher, John Lackey included.
Barring an extension, Johnson will be a part of 2011-12 free-agent class that could also include Felix Hernandez, Justin Verlander, Matt Cain, Wandy Rodriguez and Edwin Jackson.

  1. shetc - Nov 20, 2009 at 9:49 PM

    Just another day in the life of a Fish fan. gurgle

  2. Old Gator - Nov 20, 2009 at 11:07 PM

    Jeffrey Loria clearly expects someone to open a closet door somewhere and have another two dozen heretofore unseen Picassos tumble out, so he’s keeping his revenue sharing remittances in his personal bank account until it actually happens. Right. As I wrote earlier, as a totally disgusted and fed up Feesh fan I did not attend any games last season for the first time since 1993, and if the Johnson imbecility is any indication of what we can expect (and of course that was a rhetorical question), I ain’t a-gunna go to any next season either. Loria has nothing but contempt for his fans, and so this fan is happy to tell him to go perch and rotate. My money isn’t going to line any of his Bermuda shorts pockets anymore.

  3. Jason - Nov 21, 2009 at 1:49 AM

    And Selig thinks Mark Cuban would be bad for baseball! What a moron!

  4. Stultus Magnus - Nov 21, 2009 at 11:12 AM

    Hey Matthew,
    Tell your bosses to come up with a decent mobile web version of Circling the Bases or put your articles in full on the RSS feed.
    Reading you and your colleagues’ posts is annoying if you are trying to from a phone.
    I’ve been following you guys for 6 months or so, figuring that something would change eventually but it hasn’t.
    Thanks.

  5. Halfmoon Betta Fish - Jan 24, 2010 at 4:47 PM

    Cool, there is actually some good points on here some of my readers will maybe find this relevant, will send a link, many thanks. Check out Rob Clark’s Discus Fish Book if you get a chance. He knows Discus and other Fish better than any man Alive. http://tinyurl.com/discus-secrets

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  9. Save my Relationship - Jan 31, 2010 at 5:04 AM

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