Josh Johnson to Undergo Tommy John Surgery
The Padres announced today that RHP Josh Johnson would undergo Tommy John surgery tomorrow on his ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) in his right elbow after experiencing tightness and discomfort in his arm for the past several weeks. The news broke Wednesday afternoon on Twitter as a collective groan spread across the Padres fan base.
Josh Johnson will undergo Tommy John surgery tomorrow, per AJ Hinch. Dr. James Andrews will again perform the procedure.
— Dennis Lin (@dennistlin) April 23, 2014
Johnson, an off season high risk/high reward pickup, was offered a 1-year/$8 million contract with a clause that would lower or raise the amount he was set to earn depending on the number of games he started in the season. Johnson appeared in 4 spring training games with the Padres, sporting a 0-1 record with a 3.38 ERA over 13.1 innings pitched, but did not appear in a single regular season game for the Padres.
Johnson’s contract guaranteed the pitcher $4 million if he started less than seven regular season games for the club, and it appears that the club declined to get insurance on Johnson in the event that he didn’t pitch at all.
Josh Johnson was a high risk/high reward pickup. No one expected him to start 35 games, but zero? Ouch.
— Steve Adler (@Steve_Adler) April 23, 2014
Johnson, a 9-year veteran, pitched for the Toronto Blue Jays last season, putting up a 2-8 record with a 6.20 ERA in 16 games before having surgery on his right elbow in August of 2012. Johnson’s first Tommy John Surgery came back in 2007 when he was with the Florida Marlins. The Toronto Blue Jays declined to make a “qualifying” offer to Johnson this past offseason predicated on his elbow injury, and the Padres picked him up shortly thereafter.
Johnson will be attended to by Dr. James Andrews for his surgery tomorrow – the same doctor who performed Tommy John surgery on Johnson back in 2012.
#Padres do not have insurance on Josh Johnson. Typically reserved for certain multi-year deals.
— Jeff Sanders (@JeffSanders_UT) April 23, 2014
With the announcement of a second Tommy John surgery, Johnson’s future with the club is uncertain. The club now reserves a $4 million option to bring Johnson back with the team in 2015 (pursuant to the $4million/7 starts clause), but whether or not the team chooses to exercise that option is yet to be determined.