The Miami Marlins are in full-on sell mode right now and they aren’t done moving pieces. After shipping Omar Infante and Anibal Sanchez to the Detroit Tigers, we have been told the Marlins are ready to start listening to offers for ace starting pitcher Josh Johnson.
The Marlins have been terribly disappointing this year, as they currently have a 45-52 record and sit 12.5 games out of first-place in the National League East. Miami is in a place where it can seriously start dumping salary and loading up what is a below-average farm system.
Johnson is a big righty who has proven he can be a top-of-the-rotation guy in the big leagues, but has also had injury issues. Still, at just 28 years old the Minnesota native would immediately become one of the top targets of many teams looking for arms before baseball’s trade deadline.
In 20 starts this season, Johnson has a 6-7 record with a 4.14 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP. He missed most of the 2011 season thanks to shoulder inflammation, but was an All-Star in 2009 and 2010. He also led the NL in ERA in 2010 when he went 11-6 with a 2.30 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP.
The Marlins signed Johnson to a four-year, $39 million deal in 2010, so any team that acquires him will have Johnson under contract for a few more seasons.
The Toronto Blue Jays are seriously interested in Johnson, and have a several young outfielders who could entice the Marlins to deal. Miami would likely prefer major-league ready players in exchange for a guy like Johnson, so the Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels can’t be ruled out.
We’ll keep you updated on this situation as we hear more.