San Diego Sundays: 5 Things To Watch For In The Off Season

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Will The Padres Exercise Josh Johnson’s Option?

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

It was a move that made a lot of Padres fans very excited. One of the earliest moves of last year’s off-season saw former All-Star starting pitcher Josh Johnson head out west to Petco Park and many envisioned a big season from the former Marlin. People were expecting that the large dimensions of Petco Park would assist Johnson in regaining his old dominance, but unfortunately, the 30-year-old needed Tommy John Surgery before even throwing one pitch in the regular season.

However, Johnson’s contract contains a $4 million dollar option for the 2015 season, and the Padres may choose to pick up that option and add him to a rotation with Andrew Cashner, Tyson Ross and Ian Kennedy. For $4 million dollars, I think it’d be worth it to take a chance on him, and hope for him to be a fraction of his former self. But, it wasn’t current Genral Manager A.J. Preller who gave Johnson that contract, and he might try to cut ties with him altogether instead of possibly having his predecessor’s mistake on the roster. Preller may decide to keep Johnson around in hopes that he’ll pitch well enough to bring in some decent prospects come Trade Deadline time.

It’s not a stretch to think that the righty hurler could have a big season in San Diego, but his injury history and recent struggles make his chances of being the same guy who came in 5th in the Cy Young voting in 2010 low. For this Padres team, who aren’t ready to even think about contending, it may be a smart idea to what Johnson has left in the tank.