Boston Red Sox left-handed pitcher Brian Johnson is no longer a member of the organization. According to MassLive‘s Christoper Smith and Chris Cotillo, Johnson requested a release, and the team has complied. Johnson, one of the longest-tenured members of the club, spent the entirety of the 2020 season in Pawtucket.
Sources tell me and @SmittyOnMLB: Red Sox have granted Brian Johnson his release.
— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) August 10, 2020
Brian Johnson Requests Release, Boston Red Sox Grant Request
Brian Johnson isn’t the second coming of Pedro Martinez by any stretch of the imagination, but his inability to make the professional roster was surprising. Boston’s pitching staff has been largely terrible for the entire season, yet Chaim Bloom and the front office felt that Johnson couldn’t help the team. Understandably frustrated, Johnson reportedly requested his release, and the organization granted said request.
Johnson initially joined the organization as a first-round pick in the 2012 June Amateur Draft. The lefty quickly climbed through the ranks and became one of the top prospects in what was a great farm system. In 2014, Johnson had just a 1.75 ERA in 118 innings (20 starts) with the Portland Sea Dogs.
Johnson’s first taste of major league action came during a spot start in 2015. Facing off against the Houston Astros, Johnson went 4.1 innings while allowing four runs. He didn’t make it back to the majors again until 2017, after a battle with anxiety. During that season, Johnson pitched 27.0 innings to the tune of a 4.33 ERA, 4.90 FIP, and a 5.26 xFIP.
Johnson’s best season came during the 2018 campaign. The former first-round pick spend the entire season with the major league club, splitting time between the bullpen and the starting rotation. While on the mound, Johnson pitched 99.1 innings while posting a respectable 4.17 ERA, 4.68 FIP, and a 4.77 xFIP.
As of this posting, Johnson owns a career 4.74 ERA, 4.86 FIP, and a 5.19 xFIP in 171.0 innings of work. He shouldn’t be unemployed for long and will probably be claimed off waivers.
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