View Full Version : O's Blunder Means Good Deal For Yanks?

02-19-00, 05:32 PM
<u><center><font size="+1">Bitter over arbitration, Johnson readies for free agency</u></center></font>

<font size="1">Feb. 19, 2000 6:16 PM

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) For three straight years, Charles Johnson has been forced to hear his employers rip his performance in front of arbitrators.

He's bitter and hurt, and Saturday he said this will likely be his last season with the Baltimore Orioles.

Johnson, one of the best defensive catchers in the game, beat the Florida Marlins in salary arbitration before the 1998 season and twice has appeared before panels as a member of the Orioles, losing Saturday for the second straight time.

He will get $4.6 million this year instead of his request for $5.1 million.

Even before he learned of the decision, Johnson was clearly miffed as he prepared for his first day of spring training practice.

"When you're $500,000 away and can't reach the midpoint, the chances of me staying here long-term are slim," he said. "This is the second time I've done this with the Orioles and I really don't see me staying here that much longer."

Johnson will be eligible for free agency after the season, and he's looking for a five-year contract. He doesn't expect such an offer to come from the Orioles.

"I can't go into the office and say, 'Sign me.' They have to really make an effort, and they haven't," he said.

Johnson came to Baltimore in December 1998 in a three-way deal that sent relief pitcher Armando Benitez to the New York Mets. Benitez signed a four-year contract with the Mets this week while Johnson prepared for yet another arbitration hearing.

Last year he asked the Orioles for $5.1 million and wound up with Baltimore's offer of $3.6 million. Given the relatively small difference in the numbers this year, Johnson figured it would be easy to reach a compromise.

"I told my agent, `If they can come in at the midpoint we can get this thing settled and go about our business.' But we couldn't even do that," he said. "I just look at it as if we can't get that done, how are we going to let a long-term thing done?"

Johnson, 28, did a credible job in his first season in Baltimore, hitting .251 with 16 homers and 54 RBIs. But his strong point has always been on defense, and in that regard he was exceptional. He threw out 40 percent of would-be stealers and was so intimidating that only one runner attempt to swipe a base off him over his final 16 games.

In addition, Johnson played a career-high 135 games because backup Lenny Webster missed time on the disabled list and the Orioles were reluctant to use the inexperienced Mike Figga behind the plate.

But the Orioles told arbitrators that Johnson just didn't get the job done.

"There's nothing easy about it. They're telling me how bad a year I had, and my agent tells me it's a pretty good year," Johnson said. "I'm sick of it. They tear you up, and then you have to wait to see who the panel is going to believe."

<font size="1"><center>AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service</font></center>


I think we have a possible solution here if Jorge doesn't show improvement this year. This might be exactly what the Yanks need to fill in that hole at the bottom of their lineup, and make them solid on defense all the way around. This could be a very, very good thing...

02-19-00, 08:28 PM
I agree. This arbitration process is the most draconian thing I've ever seen. Does personal hygiene have anything to do with it?

Best GoYanks!

02-19-00, 08:38 PM
Dont be so quick to look for a replacemant for Jorge. Im sure he will settle in quite nicely, with the help of Joe Torre, a former catcher.

"I would like to thank the Good Lord for making me a Yankee."
- Joe DiMaggio

02-19-00, 09:33 PM
Go Jorge! I hope he has a great year! Nothing like a YANKEE when he comes up thru the system!!!


02-20-00, 09:00 AM
count me in w/ the jorge supporters...

i hear ya bth, johnson is solid, very good defensively but weak at the plate...

But I like Jorge, always have... he is developing on schedule, has one of the stongest arms, is a run producer at the plate, and WILL emerge this year as our Fulltime permanent catcher.

we'll be ok, w/ jorge...

a39 bthga prez...

26 in 2000


02-20-00, 06:37 PM
Johnson is a great defensive catcher, but he's really a liability offensive wise. He hit about a buck 85 when he was with the Dodgers. I'm not a big Johnson fan, so if Jorge doesn't get it done someone I hope someone else will be available.

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[This message has been edited by CalifYanksFan (edited February 20, 2000).]

Bluesexy's daddy
02-21-00, 11:42 PM
Let's see what they each do this year.

I am happy that the Orioles have made him mad. Peter Angelos is nearly as bright as Dan Duquette. They would have been smarter to give him the $250,000 and keep him happy.
How hard do you think Johnson will work to teach Figga now?

Thank You Peter Angelos. Would you mind starting a nice little fight with Albert "cracked" Belle? With your personality and his it should not be too hard Peter. Hey Peter, I know where you can get a bargain on a nice releaver...

All in all my bet is that Posada will improve enough to stay. He has shown that he has the fundamental skills. I hope that he is able to play up to his potential.

If you don't like the YANKEES go to another sight.

02-22-00, 06:18 AM
BS Daddy - I doubt that Johnson will be teaching Mike Figga anything. The last time I checked, Figga was a non-roster invitee for th Devil-Rays.

"Does Coggins look like Bonds?" - Bill White 1975

02-22-00, 01:04 PM
I've had my eye on Johnson since he was traded. Jorge has his chance this year...let's see how he does. If he can't hack it, it wouldn't be terrible to have an above average defensive catcher who can't hit. Think about what it would do for the staff.

See Ya!

Goto Dinologic.com (http://www.dinologic.com)

02-29-00, 05:18 PM
I will stick w/JORGE ALSO, until proven otherwise. JOHNSON same here I was never a big fan of his, excellent catcher though. PHILLY has one hell of a catcher in MIKE LIEBERTHAL, theguy can catch and hit, I would say he's very underrated. YOU also got to remember JORGE has not been catching that long, he's kind of new to that position.


02-29-00, 05:35 PM
MAFIA: Mike Leiberthal is indeed the man. I would LOVE to have him in pinstripes...


Ansky39's Neighbor's Best Friend's 9th Cousin, Twice Removed.

02-29-00, 05:50 PM
Jim: I agree with you about Johnson. I am not a big Posada fan and I don't think that he will get the job done. Johnson might even be obtained this year by the yanks if posada gets off to a bad start. Yankees have always had a very good catcher and they won't fool around with posada that long. If the pitchers start complaining behind close doodrs look out!


02-29-00, 07:29 PM
JIM he is the man, you will notice when he wasout w/an injury philly slid hard, he's the backbone along w/schilling, I would take him in a second for a catcher, he's the only catcher I would try to get for a trade, loseing girardi was a tough one girardi was the man as yanks catcher, but this kid is young and awsome.


22 Bonnie
03-04-00, 05:38 PM
Nice thought folks,there's probably 1/2 to 1% chance of getting the Philly catcher in a trade.I still think we have to give our catcher a chance.

22 Bonnie

03-05-00, 04:38 PM
I will give JORGE a chance, in fact I love the guy, I think he can do it. GIRARDI was great defenseivly, and I mean great! JORGE will have to get better at defense, his bat is solid, hey I seealot of people wondering about him and true they should, this year is his make it or break it as a no.1 catcher, it's in his hands now. BUT to get a LEIBERTHAL who wouldn't grab him ?


03-05-00, 04:58 PM
Hey Maf, whats up?
Leiberthal? Man you know what it what take to get that kid away from Philly.
I'm going to go out on a limb. I think Posada will put up close to Leiberthal numbers either this year or next year. I think Posada can give us close to 30 hr's and 90 rbi's. Many think I'm nuts. But his bat from both sides is quick as hell.
I'm sticking with this guy. I just got a feeling.


[This message has been edited by kgblues (edited March 05, 2000).]

03-06-00, 05:58 PM
KG, I LOVE POSADA, I would love to see him do great, it would make me very happy for him and the YANK'S, he has the bat no problem w/that, clutch hits in the postseason, he did have a few by the way. YOU are correct also w/his 30 hr potentiel, but that kid in PHILLY I just think he's the most underrated catcher in the game that most people do not talk about. LATER, gotta watch the KNICKS game from sunday on tape.


03-07-00, 07:15 AM
88-79, just a lousy game w/MALONE doing his thing as alway's.