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Article: Free Agent Pitcher Profile: Josh Johnson

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#1 Nick Nelson

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:14 AM

You can view the page at http://twinsdaily.co...le-Josh-Johnson

#2 DAM DC Twins Fans

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:33 AM

I would take a flyer (like Pelfrey) on him. One year 8 or 9 million. Max 2 year 15 million. Maybe he could be a stop gap till the young guys (Berrios, Stewart, Gonsalves) are ready.

#3 Winston Smith

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:47 AM

Certainly worth the effort to sign him. He has big upside and the only downside is money which will go in Pohlads pocket if not spent. If he has a big year either trade him at the deadline or a QO next winter.
True or not I read his brother lives in the cities.

#4 Jeremy Nygaard

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:05 AM

I'd like to see the Twins offer a Pelfrey-ish contract. Obviously more money, but incentives that could earn him up to $12, 13, 14m. If he's right - and reaches those incentives - you turn around and make him a QO.

(Wow. I typed out my comment and noticed I hadn't submitted it... lots of similar thinkers late in the morning.)

#5 Smcginnity

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:36 AM

I would be all for us giving a Pelfrey contract to Josh Johnson, Johan Santana and Tim Hudson. All risky but mine as well :)

#6 twinsfan34

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:19 AM

I'd give him a Correia contract.

(Pelfrey was already taken)

#7 spycake

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:39 AM

Basically, any one-year deal would be fine for Johnson, and probably Hughes too. That's all they will be looking for this offseason, and with that short of a term, the dollars really don't matter.

Still would be nice to get a longer-term guy for the rotation too -- maybe Johnson or Hughes if they have success could be extended reasonably, or we could splurge on an Ervin Santana type.

#8 Don't Feed the Greed Guy

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 12:23 PM

Johnson for one year, and Hughes for three. Pay what the market will bear, Pohlads.

#9 Thrylos

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 12:59 PM

It will take more than a Pelfrey contract. He is not returning from a Tommy John surgery.

Hate to say it (because the price will be high), but his play in 2013 was not reflected by his 2-8 record and 6.20 ERA, but by his 3.58 xFIP. Add his more than 1 K/IP to his 93 mph average fastball, to his under 30 age and you got a guy who you (or someone) will want to sign for a 3-4 year contract.

And I think that a 3/40 or 4/50 might be what it will take, including incentives. Look at what Lincicum got, and Johnson has fewer questions...

#10 TRex

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 01:07 PM

Can you make a Qualifying Offer if you only give a 1 year contract? IIRC, you didn't get compensation under the old rules unless the player was on a multi-year deal.

#11 zenser

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 01:17 PM

I am not very high on Johnson due to his injury history. I would be happy that the Twins signed him if they also sign one or two other pitchers. If he is the only signing, I would be pretty disappointed.

#12 Rick Niedermann

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 02:42 PM

My concern is that Terry Ryan will wait till the market establishes itself and he will cringe and pull back on aggressively pursuing anyone in free agency other then the scrap bin variety. I hope he jumps out of the gate after a Johnson, either Santana, Vargas or Hughes. Hughes I would be willing to go multiple years. He seems like a good fit for Target Field.

#13 Thrylos

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 02:57 PM

I hope he jumps out of the gate after a Johnson, either Santana, Vargas or Hughes..


Vargas does not belong in this list. He would be a tremendous mistake. Nick Blackburn 2.0. But he is a groundball pitcher with a 87 mph FB who pitches to contact, which is what the Twins' like.
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#14 Nick Nelson

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 02:58 PM

And I think that a 3/40 or 4/50 might be what it will take, including incentives. Look at what Lincicum got, and Johnson has fewer questions...

Ah... no. Lincecum has made 32+ starts for six straight years and pitched ~200 innings this season. Johnson has made 32+ starts once in his career and is coming off a season that was shortened by arm problems and ended in elbow surgery.

#15 Thrylos

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 07:43 PM

Ah... no. Lincecum has made 32+ starts for six straight years and pitched ~200 innings this season. Johnson has made 32+ starts once in his career and is coming off a season that was shortened by arm problems and ended in elbow surgery.


Looks like his camp will be asking close to Lincecum numbers... I am pretty confident that he will get it.

Interesting comments from Radcliff in that link, which make me think that these guys (Twins FO scouts) do not know the difference between "horrible" and "good" and they go by W-L and ERA. Unless they think that every single Twins SP was "horrible", since Johnson's 3.58 xFIP dwarfs all of the Twins' SP numbers, and his k/9 is almost double to the best Twins' SP.

Edited by Thrylos, 01 November 2013 - 07:47 PM.

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#16 TheLeviathan

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 09:34 PM

I highly doubt Johnson gets 7M. That's 1.5M more than Correia with cash flush in the league.

I'm guessing it's more akin to what Dan Haren got from Washington.

#17 Trevor0333

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:26 PM

Really interesting tidbit from Radcliff about Johnson

Twins VP of player personnel Mike Radcliff threw some cold water on the possibility of a move on Johnson, Berardino further reports. Radcliff said that Johnson is coming off of a "horrible" year and "if he wants $10 million, we're not going to be involved with that

To which I would agree whole heartedly!

#18 Old Twins Cap

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 10:41 PM

Here's the problem: Ryan will wait to see what the market bares and hope against hope that he will get a deal once the dust settles. Problem is, like last year, other teams will establish the market by signing the decent SP, leaving the Twinks with rejects, the scrap-pile and has beens. To get these guys, the Twins can't sit back and react. They have to be aggressive and spend right out of the gate.

#19 beckmt

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 11:36 PM

Johnson would be worthwhile even on a 1 year contract. If you gamble and lose it happens and if you win, you can flip him at the deadline for some very good prospects. He then would not bog down payroll in the succeeding years.

#20 diehardtwinsfan

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 05:04 AM

Johnson isn't going to get anything close to 10M (unless it's purely incentives). After a disappointing season and forearm pain, he's a Tommy John candidate waiting to happen. I'm guessing he gets less than Pelfrey. I'm fine going after him on a 1 year deal, but I'm guessing he's not getting more than 3 to 4M, and even that makes me cringe as I suspect he's on the 60 day DL by May.

#21 Jeremy Nygaard

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 05:26 AM

Can you make a Qualifying Offer if you only give a 1 year contract? IIRC, you didn't get compensation under the old rules unless the player was on a multi-year deal.


You can. You can't make a QO to players that are traded during the season. Napoli, for example, will get a QO coming off a 1-year deal.

#22 mike wants wins

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 09:58 AM

If he is the second best pitcher , great. If he is the top signee......too much risk for me.

#23 Oxtung

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 12:13 PM

It's amazing how different opinions can be on a guy. In this thread there is everything from "sign him for 1 year and $3-4 million," to "he'll command 3-4 years and $40-50 million."

Personally I like Johnson more than just about every pitcher available this off season. Tough call between Jimenez, Santana or Johnson.

If Johnson is looking for a 1 year make good contract I would love for the Twins to be aggressive, overspend on the first year to acquire an option year. If that means going 1 year $20 million with a second year option at $15 million I would be OK with that. I would certainly be in favor of overspending on 2 seasons if that means an option year in year 3 as well.

IMO this kind of pitcher is exactly what the Twins should be looking for. Someone that has the potential to be a front line starter. The Twins don't have any currently and only have 1 potentially in the upper minors. After that you have to go all the way down to Kohl Stewart at A-Ball. It's pretty clear the Twins won't sign a Greinke quality player so the next best option, IMO, is to find a guy with flaws but potential and then be aggressive in pursuing him.

#24 goulik

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 12:25 PM

IMO this kind of pitcher is exactly what the Twins should be looking for. Someone that has the potential to be a front line starter. The Twins don't have any currently and only have 1 potentially in the upper minors. After that you have to go all the way down to Kohl Stewart at A-Ball. It's pretty clear the Twins won't sign a Greinke quality player so the next best option, IMO, is to find a guy with flaws but potential and then be aggressive in pursuing him.


Amen! If your not going to go for Greinke, go for these guys hard being creative on the long term! Johnson, 1 year at 7 million with mutual options for next two seasons at 15-20 for example...

#25 Wookiee of the Year

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 12:34 PM

Yeah, Johnson's among my favorite Twins targets. As mentioned above, he's got ace potential, and the Twins aren't going to pay for a True Ace with no question marks--which leaves gambling on high-upside guys.

I would happily see the Twins sign Johnson to a one-year deal for up to $10-12 million. If they can get him for less or get an option year out of him, all the better. If not, you've at least signed a guy with real top-of-the-rotation potential who, if he succeeds, you can flip at the deadline or offer a Qualifying Offer at the end of the year. If he falls on his face, well, there's no such thing as a bad one-year contract.

#26 YourHouseIsMyHouse

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 01:08 PM

It's amazing how different opinions can be on a guy. In this thread there is everything from "sign him for 1 year and $3-4 million," to "he'll command 3-4 years and $40-50 million."

Personally I like Johnson more than just about every pitcher available this off season. Tough call between Jimenez, Santana or Johnson.


IMO this kind of pitcher is exactly what the Twins should be looking for. Someone that has the potential to be a front line starter. The Twins don't have any currently and only have 1 potentially in the upper minors. After that you have to go all the way down to Kohl Stewart at A-Ball. It's pretty clear the Twins won't sign a Greinke quality player so the next best option, IMO, is to find a guy with flaws but potential and then be aggressive in pursuing him.


I'd say Jimenez is a easily the best pitcher on the market.
Jimenez
2013: 3.43 FIP, 2012: 5.06 (Fluke), 2011: 3.67 2010: 3.10

Johnson (injury concerns and noticeable trend)
2013: 4.62 FIP, 2012: 3.40 2011: 2.64 2010: 2.10

Santana (hasn't outperformed Jimenez since 2008)
2013: 3.93 FIP, 2012: 5.63 2011: 4.00 2010: 4.28

#27 TopGunn#22

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 03:25 PM

I'm sure Terry Ryan (or the Pohlads) don't read any of this stuff. But really, you guys are the backbone of Twins fans and to a man, NONE of you have any faith in Terry Ryan. And I agree with you all 100%! He has done nothing recently to inspire any confidence with Twins fans that HE, Terry Ryan, will set the market, but rather, Ryan will intently study what OTHER people will do (thus letting OTHERS set the market) and play it safe. Our starting pitching is historically bad and talented prospects are 2-3 years away from contributing. This is why Ryan needs to sign 3 pitchers. Two decent ones with the potential to be with us 3 years from now (Jimenez, E. Santana, Hughes, Tanaka) and one "flyer" like Johnson or Johan Santana. Money should not be a problem. The Twins are at risk of losing the fan base and they might not come back until the Twins are winning. And if Ryan waits for the market to establish itself before he decides to enter the fray, "winning" will be a long way off and there will be a lot of empty seats at Target Field.

#28 Thrylos

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 03:27 PM

I'd say Jimenez is a easily the best pitcher on the market.
Jimenez
2013: 3.43 FIP, 2012: 5.06 (Fluke), 2011: 3.67 2010: 3.10

Johnson (injury concerns and noticeable trend)
2013: 4.62 FIP, 2012: 3.40 2011: 2.64 2010: 2.10

Santana (hasn't outperformed Jimenez since 2008)
2013: 3.93 FIP, 2012: 5.63 2011: 4.00 2010: 4.28


Average Jimenez' and Jonhson's FIPs and see who has the best. I'd argue that Johnson's 2013 FIP was a fluke more than Jimenez' 2012 FIP (compare their xFIPs and BABIPs for those 2 seasons.)

And in 2013 Johnson played in AL East while Jimenez in AL Central that had 2 of the worst teams in baseball. Big difference.
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#29 Oxtung

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 11:22 PM

I'd say Jimenez is a easily the best pitcher on the market.
Jimenez
2013: 3.43 FIP, 2012: 5.06 (Fluke), 2011: 3.67 2010: 3.10

Johnson (injury concerns and noticeable trend)
2013: 4.62 FIP, 2012: 3.40 2011: 2.64 2010: 2.10

Santana (hasn't outperformed Jimenez since 2008)
2013: 3.93 FIP, 2012: 5.63 2011: 4.00 2010: 4.28


Why did you pick FIP? As a predictive stat it lags behind both xFIP and SIERA, which is currently the best on the market.

[TABLE="class: grid, width: 500"]
[TR]
[TD]SIERA
[/TD]
[TD]2010
[/TD]
[TD]2011
[/TD]
[TD]2012
[/TD]
[TD]2013
[/TD]
[TD]Avg.
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Jimenez
[/TD]
[TD]3.68
[/TD]
[TD]3.74
[/TD]
[TD]4.85
[/TD]
[TD]3.74
[/TD]
[TD]4.00
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Santana
[/TD]
[TD]4.26
[/TD]
[TD]3.95[/TD]
[TD]4.35
[/TD]
[TD]3.85
[/TD]
[TD]4.10
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Johnson
[/TD]
[TD]3.10
[/TD]
[TD]3.36
[/TD]
[TD]3.86
[/TD]
[TD]3.73
[/TD]
[TD]3.51
[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]


[TABLE="class: grid, width: 500"]
[TR]
[TD]xFIP-1
[/TD]
[TD]2010
[/TD]
[TD]2011
[/TD]
[TD]2012
[/TD]
[TD]2013
[/TD]
[TD]Avg.
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Jimenez
[/TD]
[TD]90
[/TD]
[TD]95
[/TD]
[TD]121
[/TD]
[TD]91
[/TD]
[TD]99
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Santana
[/TD]
[TD]103
[/TD]
[TD]97
[/TD]
[TD]108
[/TD]
[TD]93
[/TD]
[TD]100
[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD]Johnson
[/TD]
[TD]76
[/TD]
[TD]86
[/TD]
[TD]95
[/TD]
[TD]90
[/TD]
[TD]87
[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]
1 xFIP- is traditional xFIP that has been normalized so that 100 is average and for every whole number below 100 that player is 1% better than average. So an xFIP- of 90 means Johnson was 10% better than the average pitcher in 2013 (the fact that his ERA- was 152 is then attributable to unknown factors and bad luck).


According to the two best metrics Johnson has been a better pitcher literally every season. The only thing that worries me about Johnson, and it is a pretty minor worry, is that his FB velocity has dropped 1 MPH over the last 2 seasons. Of course it still sits at 93 MPH so....

#30 Wookiee of the Year

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 11:56 PM

According to the two best metrics Johnson has been a better pitcher literally every season.

I'm embarrassed to say that I don't know the answer to this question: Do the +/- stats incorporate Innings Pitched (or, in the case of OPS+, Plate Appearances) into their value? My assumption has always been that they do not. If that's the case, then that's pretty big factor in Johnson's potential value that's being left out.