The Jason Johnson experiement

OK, we are just eight innings into the Jason Johnson experiment, but I am already finding it unwatchable. It appears his problems are far deeper than the shoddy infield that played behind him in Cleveland.

The guy just has a knack for giving up hits. It is a reminder of what Derek Lowe was like at his worst. I mentioned to a couple of other people that the only thing missing from tonight’s game were the "Derek Lowe face" as Bill Simmons always calls it, and the Derek Lowe shoulder shrug.

Giving up hits is one thing, but not being able to hold runners is even more frustrating. Everyone knows Crawford is one of the fastest runners in baseball, but Johnson never even gave the slightest look toward third base when he went into his slow, plodding motion and crawford stole home easily.

Paging Kyle Snyder; paging Abe Alvarez; paging a healthy Matt Clement. Paging somebody. Call me pessimistic — actually, I’m usually quite optimistic — but I just don’t see this experiment working. Not that there was any risk for trying. Johnson was virtually free. I guess we are now finding out why he was so readily available.

67 Comments

I’m just curious as to what Theo thought he was going to get in Johnson. As I said earlier, you don’t just give up 10 hits and 6 runs a game because of a shoddy infield. Once again he put the Sox in a hole that they have to dig out of.
The Yanks are ganging up on Cleveland as payback for last night so this “Experient” could very well have cost the Sox 2 games in the standings. (Losing in Friday vs. Florida when the Yanks won and tonight).

Why didn’t Snyder get another shot? If Johnson gets another start I have to seriously doubt what the Sox strategy is. It’s not like Johnson is going to be of any use during the stretch run, CLement and Wells are a long way off. What hurt would it have done to see what Snyder could do. Hindsight is 20/20, but you don’t have to be a baseball wizard to figure out that Jason Johnson wasn’t going to be the answer.

I know Jason Johnson is leaky; but, this isn’t Walter Johnson we’re facing tonight. Hit! you rutabagas, HIT!!!

Tavarez pitched 2 scoreless innings.Is that possible?
-kaylee

I mean, that has to be an omen that the Sox are destined to win, right? Tavarez holds the fort down. Let’s go bats. The guy has only thrown 85 pitches. Is there another round of interleague that we can schedule??

I could go for a nice, frosty beer right now. Oh well, something to look forward to later tonight.

0 runs Monday, 3 before the game was a blowout last night, 2 tonight. I don’t think Buehrle, Garcia and Contreras are going to be any easier.
Hopefully this is this kid’s last inning.

On a side note, If any of you don’t know who Bill Simmons is that Ian referred to, you should check him out on ESPN.com and definitely read his book “Now I can Die in Peace.” The guy is hysterical and a complete Boston homer. It’s great stuff. And yes, Clement had his own version of the “Derek Lowe Face” any time he had runners in scoring position as well.

How long is Tavarez gunna pitch?
-kaylee

One of the Rays’ tv announcers just said Corcoran has done well tonight– considering he doesn’t have his best stuff. Sure could’ve fooled the Red Sox. Ex-Harville looking good, too.
Announcer also said Ozzie Guillen just chose Maglio Ordonez–rather than Carl Crawford–to replace Manny. What would be a solution to choosing managers who will not over stock their team with their own players. Maybe use retired managers like Lasorda or, at least, for starters, choose two guys who have not been forced to undergo sensitivity training.

WOW the DEVIL RAYS ARE TOUGH!!!

Also, how could Francona or ANYONE not see Crawford was going to steal after the first pitch. AND then have Johnson AGAIN throw from the wind up?? JUST AWFUL!

I should be the last observer to be saying this, I know, the ole pot/kettle thing, but this Tampa Bay play-by-play tv guy has quite a mouth on him to be announcing for a last place team. Now watch ‘em fold like an accordian when the NYY come into town behind us.

Here we go, Kaylee, Ellen. Trot’s on! Now would someone(s) please shake off the doldrums and knock the **** out of the ball?!!!

BEER FOR EVERYBODY!!!!!!!!!!!

I’m so embarrassed with the way Jason Johnson is playing. Here, we’ve got some great starting pitchers and, for some reason, they want to put in this piece of junk pitcher to somehow win a game against a team on the BOTTOM OF THE AL EAST (which, for some reason, we seem to get the snot beaten out of us every time). And what in the heck were they thinking by getting Tavarez?!?! I’ve come to the conclusion that whenever he throws a strike, it’s definitely a mistake.
Finally, one last whine, and I’ll let everyone go for the night. BASEBALL IS AN OUTDOOR SPORT – dome stadiums need to be for football and soccer. So, we’ll stick with our ourdoor “stick it out when it rains” park in Fenway – I’d choose the rain over feeling cooped up anyday.

tOO YOUNG THERE DANIEL!
-KAYLEE

seriously… this is so disappointing. i just can’t wait for them to come back home! i can’t believe how we lost the momentum we had from the mets series. i dont know who else was there (i’m a vendor in the stands), but the atmosphere at fenway was unlike any so far this season– where did it all go? where’d our unstoppable (verging on… excessive!) hitting go?
positive thoughts for tomorrow… sending all my energy to wake,

pearl

the johnson experiment was a failure. it sounded like it might work on paper, because of our vaccuum-cleaner infield and johnson’s ground balls, but he’s just not a good enough pitcher no matter how the balls get hit. he definitely can’t handle the pressure of being a starter for the red sox.
-julie

It’s games like the past two that keep up from leaving an overachieving thus far NYY team in our dust. How can we be so much better overall and more fortunate injury wise than them…and still not be able to shake them? Three measley games ahead! We’re going to be in some kind of trouble if our pitching can’t pitch and our lineup can’t hit tommorrow, shaking off the throes of this pitiful slump, before facing the White Sox.

Okay, Kaylee, beer for Ian, (several for me) and others, and Pepsi or Coke or hot chocolate or shake for you, Starzfan and Gosox 101.

Okay that is better.
still 6 years away.

-kaylee

saw a suggestion on another board of putting tavarez in the rotation for now. can’t be worse than johnson.

snyder seemed to do ok his one time out. anyone notice how he’s been doing in pawtucket?

Well, before we all do a mass suicide, let’s note the incredible performance of the rookies (Pawtucket Delivers!): Papelbon, Lester, Delcarmen and now Hansen (lights out with 3 strike outs).

So admit it, the Red Sox are in a pitching rebuilding year with the loss of Arroyo, Wells, Riske and Clement.

And yet they are still #1 in their division.

All logic says that Toronto should be the leader and the NYY’s should be in shambles.

This is NOT so.

So in spite of all of Theo’s (and his staff’s) follies, the Sox are going to have a great second half.

I agree, Johnson is a bust. Time to move on, Theo. I vote for Snyder too.

Thanks so much, Father Comey. Bless you, my son!

i definantly agree the johnson experiment is over i mean his last two starts he has given up runs the first two innings, its a risk bringing back snider because even though he did have a good debut, you have to remember that he pitched against the nationals and was supported by the red sox who were winners of 3 in a row at that time but i think he cant be worse than johnson so definantly bring him in

i definantly agree the johnson experiment is over i mean his last two starts he has given up runs the first two innings, its a risk bringing back snider because even though he did have a good debut, you have to remember that he pitched against the nationals and was supported by the red sox who were winners of 3 in a row at that time but i think he cant be worse than johnson so definantly bring him in

I agree.Snyder might be a little bit of a risk but,why not give him another chance he pitched nicely in his debut.He cant be worse then JOhnson. Where’s theo? Get on the same page as us Theo.
Matt:I would not try Tavarez.

He cannnot even relief start you are asking for it then.

Anyways it is time for me to go to bed…..3:10 am is late for a 14 year old.That is my two cents.

-kaylee

Tell me if this makes sense. I read a quote on the Sox webiste where Francona says about aquiring Johnson: “He was struggling, that’s why we got him.” ??????????? Can anyone make sense of this ridiculous statement. Another article says the rotation will start the second half with Wake, Beckett and Schill going against Oakland. Then Lester and Johnson. You mean to tell me this stiff is going to get another start. I know the Sox just had a 12 game winning streak and everything was great, but this is only a 3 game lead. Are they going to continue to give games away by letting this guy pitch? Bring up Snyder. After Oakland, KC comes to town. You don’t think that Snyder would want to shove it in the Royals face by throwing a gem against the team that gave up on him while he is now pitching in Femway for the division leading Sox???
As hot as they were, it seems the bats have cooled off at the same time. Youk (granted he got robbed by another dome fiasco last night) is struggling, Lowell is almost below .300, Tek is back below .250 and Coco hasn’t got a hit since he dropped down a bunt against the Mets.

The bats need a serious wake up call before going into Chicago. I hate to be a pessimist because of the nice run they’ve had, but the Sox could seriously go into the break down a game or tied for the lead.

If Kazmir and Fossom don’t pitch gems against the Yankees this weekend, I’m going to have serious doubts about who actually pays their salary’s. Tampa or NY?? It seems the shut down the Sox then get lit up by NY.

One last thing on Johnson. HE STINKS!! I’m sorry but I don’t remember who brought it up earlier, but WHY pitch from the windup with the fastest guy in the league on 3rd. And don’t tell me it’s because he feels much better from the windup than the stretch, because he STINKS in both positions. Time for Wake to dance that knuckler around the park tonight and maybe Douggie can raise his average and get close to the .200 mark.

On a side note, 2 terrible starts by Johnson, but both games had real good jobs by the pen keeping them in game giving the Sox a chance to come back.

The worst part about Johnsons preformance last night, if you can call it that, was he failed to preform a simple pitchout. Giving him a second chance was more than understandalbe, but I don’t think you can let him take the ball again. Maybe they’ll give Snyder his next start.

These last 2 sweeps have been painful (Minnesota, TB). I can very easily write off road losses to tough lefties (Kazmir, Willis, Santana), but these no-shows against scrubs are brutal. Thank god I Tivo the games and can fast forward through the muck. I did however, rewind many of Johnson’s hits last night. I don’t understand how someone can be considered a ground ball pitcher when he lays meatballs right over the middle of the plate, thigh-high? I think I was even more pissed off than Youks after that BS dome debacle. How can they possibly play professional baseball in that joke of a ballpark? It reminded me of playing baseball as a kid in the street… hit a phone line or a moving car and its a do-over. I really thought that one had a chance to go over the fence. Anyway, I have tickets to the game friday night in Chicago. We better wake up quickly or its going to be ugly.

Rayman, I think if it was humanly possible to go through the television set and wring a few commentators’ necks, me or my mother probably would have. Some definite profane words were coming out of our mouths when they kept on about Youk crying in the dugout. If Tampa Bay got a REAL stadium, we wouldn’t have to worry about players getting pissed when they get robbed of great shots because of bullcrap “rules”. And I agree, Johnson (and even Tavarez) need to stop being so worried about striking players out and worry more about getting them to hit ground balls or pop flys. We have the best dang infield in the freakin’ majors, but no one seems to take that into consideration or even take advantage of that. I vote Johnson out – we have definitely found out why he was so available for the taking. Thank goodness for Tim and Douggie – I no longer cringe whenever Tim comes to the mound anymore, now that Mr. Mirabelli is back home. Let’s see if we can light up some Tampa Bay butts tonight.

Any chance of moving Hansen/Delcarmen into the starting rotation? If we don’t come up with a trade or solution quickly, I think we need to dust off the Papelbon idea again! If you take 80 more games, divided by 5, that’s 16 more hopeless starts. Todd Jones of the Tigers is 22-25 in save situations with a 6.00 ERA. Papelbon is 25-27 with a .43 ERA. I’m still of the belief that the difference in Starting Pitching will be greater than the drop off in Closer if we move Papelbon. We’re essentially donating every fifth game at this point if we don’t do something drastic.

//Tell me if this makes sense. I read a quote on the Sox webiste where Francona says about aquiring Johnson: “He was struggling, that’s why we got him.” ??????????? Can anyone make sense of this ridiculous statement.//

Think about it. The reason why Johnson was available was BECAUSE he was struggling. You’re not going to pick a guy up who’s doing well for nothing. You want a stud pitcher, you’re going to have to give up quality in return, and the Red Sox don’t want to sell guys like Pedroia or Ellsbury for a half-year rental. Remember the Freddy Sanchez trade for pitching in 2003? Now he’s an all-star in Pittsburgh.

Remember last year, when the Yankees picked up Aaron Small and Shawn Chacon, and everyone laughed? Small was a career minor-leaguer and Chacon was getting whacked around in the NL. And Small ended up 10-0 for the Yankees in 2005 and Chacon was one of their best pitchers down the stretch. Sometimes you catch lightning in a bottle. (For a Red Sox example, remember Curtis Leskanic? Dropped by the Royals, he ends up winning Game 4 of the ALCS.)

That said, the Johnson experiment looks like a failed one at the moment. Snyder is 2-0 with a 2.03 ERA in Pawtucket and is due to pitch tonight. If he does well, I’d say bring him up.

//Any chance of moving Hansen/Delcarmen into the starting rotation?//

No way. Delcarmen hasn’t started in years, and Hansen has never been a starter. And then what would you do for middle relief? And you can’t move Papelbon from the closer’s role, not only because that would leave a huge hole, but because it would take about a month to stretch him out to start. The Sox can’t afford to do that.

The best thing Sox fans can do is what the players do – realize it’s a long season and don’t push the panic button. As Bob Ryan writes in the Globe: “They go to Atlanta, win a game, and then another and another and pretty soon they’ve won 12 straight. You want to bring ‘em all home for dinner, maybe put ‘em in your will. They come here to play the Devil Rays, who are better than you think, and they lose three. Oops. Call the lawyer. They’re out of the will. It’s baseball; that’s all.”

http://www.boston.com/sports/baseball/redsox/articles/2006/07/06/there_is_no_cause_for_alarm/

harco, I know what you’re saying, I’m just confused as to why bother with the pick up. If you knew he was struggling, how much better than Snyder or Pauley was he going to be?? That being said, if you knew he was struggling and wasn’t going to produce, even more of an argument to stick with the other 2 so they can get their lumps and possibly be productive down the stretch.
Since Francona’s statement is basically conceeding struggles during Johnson’s games, why bother?

As far as other starters, I know they had Hansen starting games at AAA, but that was more so he could get more work and concentrate on different pitches for the long haul. I don’t think they intended him to be a starter.

I took my son to the petting zoo over the weekend and saw a big pile of horse poo on the ground. Technically, that pile of horse poo was AVAILABLE and I could have used it for lots of things… but I decided to just leave it there on the ground. Maybe Francona should heed that advice.

That’s classic!

rayman: I really like your analogy on that one!!! as gsr said absolutley classic. And what Bob Ryan wrote is also exactly correct, my aren’t we fickle beneficiaries (daniel did I spell that right?? ooh, speaking of spelling,Ian needs to check his headline). We do still have alot of ball to play (actually, we just watch, right?) Although, I’m sure some of you out there in the Nation can pitch with a lot better results than Jason Johnson. But for right now, I guess we play with who we have until something better comes along, we’ve played through and won in a lot worse times. I think the Sox just have to start playing with the mentality that we are 10 1/2 out like in 2004. They really put it on then, didn’t they? After the win streak, the word complacent came to mind. Let’s kick it into high gear. I’m hiding my broom tonight,(no I wasn’t planning on going out for a ride!!!) I just don’t want the Rays to get a hold of it.

ps: kaylee, I was just reading over the posts from last pm/this am, what the heck are you doing up at that hour. It reminds me of me at your age, if you keep this up you’ll end up looking like me, you know dark circles under the eyes etc.. get some sleep young lady!!!

Ellen:I have no idea what I was doing up at 3am.I was sure tired though.
-kaylee

Well I hope you’re not too tired to cheer our guys on tonight. They are going to need it. Wakefield is on tonight. It sure was exciting to see his “flutterball” up close. It just hangs up there forever. Nothing better than seeing an oppsosing batter look very, very silly nearly twisting himself into the ground., but there is the other side of that coin and I won’t go any further with that.
Anyway, Nationers, ARE WE GOING TO WIN TONIGHT??? YOU BET WE ARE, ‘CAUSE WE ARE THE SOX.. LET’S GO REDSOX, LET’S GO!!!

NO ellen:I am not too tired for the Red sox are you kidding?Ive been sitting here since 5:00 waiting for the game to start……cant leave now!
GO SOX!

-kaylee

Finally on….NOw
LEts go sox!

-kaylee

Manny’s knee really seems to pain him when he sprints around the bases during his home run trot.

IS that a joke IAn?
-kaylee

DOUGIE!!!!!!!!!!!!
Apparently we like to score on

HOmers tonight.

-kaylee

PAPI!!!!!!!!!!Homer!
What is with the homers tonight do have to hit a homer

to score????????

Manny’s knee really seems to pain him when he sprints around the bases during his home run trot.

Posted by: Ian | July 6, 2006 08:18 PM

IS that a joke IAn?

-kaylee

I’m in the middle of a long road trip… I’m entitled to a little sarcasm, right?

Ian:: As much as we paint the blog with sarcasm, you’re entitled to as much as you wish!!! I just want to say that no matter which of our players are going to the Allstar game Tuesday, THEY ARE ALL ALLSTARS IN MY BOOK. LOVE MY SOX!!!!

PAPI!!!!!!!!! again.
-kaylee

IAN-
TOOK ME AWHILE TO FIGURE THAT OUT.GO SOX!

MAN CARL CRAWFORD CAN HIT!

-KAYLEE

More run support would insure this VICTORY!
GO SOX!

-kaylee

I don’t mean to be a wet blanet, but this is getting plain depressing. Have a lead give it up, don’t have the lead can’t get the lead. One night we’ve got no bats the next we’ve got no arms. What next??

thanks kaylee for the update.

10-4 on the other side of things.

lets not give this up now!
-kaylee

gosoxred. we miss you in the other chat….not fagan though, fagan turns into something stupid.

Okay what is going on here they got 1 inning to hold this 1 run lead.
I was over on marks blog.

I should stay off that.

-kaylee

The top of the ninth and only one runs lead games always have me covering my eyes at every pitch. :) Of course, we could always load ‘em up for David or Manny to empty them real quick and give ourselves definite insurance runs. But I’ll take a few RBI singles otherwise.

Hey any offense helps
-kaylee

OH MY GOD, HE DID IT! I CALLED THAT ONE. Oh, that’s absolutely crazy! Welcome to Red Sox country, Tampa Bay. THIS is why we’re number one and you’re number 5!

A grand slam works too!
papi!

-kaylee

ya know, that Ortiz guy is pretty good hitter.

There you go bu you called manny or ortiz to hit it not just ortiz!O well!
-kAylee

DThatcher:I just told my dad that PAPI was not a good hitter a the other day.
I was wrong I guess.

-kaylee

Yeah, but I knew it would be one of the two of them. Papi always comes through for me.

GOOD POINT! THEY DIDNT LET YOU DOWN!
-kaylee

THIS IS GUNNA BE HARD forr paps to give up!
-kaylee

why is paps in?
-kaylee

New post by Ian’s up!!

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