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Jason Johnson
Jason Johnson, Las Vegas.jpg
Johnson with the Las Vegas 51s
Born: (1973-10-27) October 27, 1973 (age 48)
Santa Barbara, California
Batted: Right
Threw: Right
Professional debut
MLB: August 27, 1997, for the Pittsburgh Pirates
NPB: 2007, for the Seibu Lions
Last appearance
NPB: 2007, for the Seibu Lions
MLB: September 26, 2008, for the Los Angeles Dodgers
MLB statistics
Win–loss record56–100
Earned run average4.99
NPB statistics
Win–loss record1–4
Earned run average4.35

Jason Michael Johnson (born October 27, 1973) is a former Major League Baseball pitcher. He throws and bats right-handed.


Johnson graduated from Conner High School in Hebron, Kentucky. He did not enter college, but was signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as an undrafted free agent in 1992. He made his major league debut with the Pirates in 1997, appearing in only 3 games. Following the season, he was among the players selected in the draft by the newly created franchise, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. In his lone season in Tampa Bay, Johnson went 2-5 in 13 starts. From 1999 to 2003, Johnson was with the Baltimore Orioles, 2001 being his best season of his career, going 10-12 with a career low 4.09 ERA. In 2001, he received the Tony Conigliaro Award.

Johnson signed a two year deal with the Detroit Tigers prior to the 2004 season. In his first season with Detroit, Johnson posted his worst season as a full time starter, going 8-15 with an ERA of 5.13 in 196+ innings. On June 8, 2005, Johnson became the first Tigers pitcher to hit a home run in a regular season game since Les Cain in 1971. The homer came against Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Jeff Weaver, at Dodger Stadium. Despite finishing the season 8-13, Johnson lowered his ERA from the previous season and pitched in a career high 210 innings while posting his lowest K/9 of his career, striking out just 93 while inducing 49 walks.

Johnson signed with Cleveland prior to the 2006 season [1] He fared no better there, going 3-8 with a 5.96 ERA. He was designated for assignment on June 22, 2006. Before he decided whether or not to accept the assignment, he was traded to the Boston Red Sox for cash. In Boston, his time as a member of the Red Sox was disastrous, going 0-4 with a 7.36 ERA. On August 18, 2006, Johnson was designated for assignment by the Red Sox and quickly signed to a minor league contract with the Cincinnati Reds.

He signed an incentive-laden, one-year, $3 million contract with the Seibu Lions for the 2007 season.[2] He pitched one season in Japan, then on February 7, 2008, signed a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He failed to make the Dodgers opening day roster and was assigned to the Triple-A Las Vegas 51s. On July 18 the Dodgers added him to the 25-man roster, and he finished the season with them, going 1-2 with an ERA of 5.22. On January 6, 2009, he signed a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training with the New York Yankees, where he was expected to compete for the final spot in the starting rotation.[3] Johnson's return was thrown into doubt when he was diagnosed with choroidal melanoma in his right retina. On August 10, 2009 he was released by the Yankees.[4]

He last played for the Amarillo Sox in the American Association of Independent Professional Baseball in 2013.

Johnson has type 1 diabetes and was the first Major League Baseball player to get permission to wear an insulin pump on the field. He wears the pump on his belt on the left side of his lower back, in order to minimize the chance of it being hit by a bat or thrown ball.[5]


  1. ^ "Indians Sign Jason Johnson".
  2. ^ Seibu get Red Sox right-hander Johnson for 350 mil. yen Archived 2008-01-21 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Yankees sign Jason Johnson
  4. ^ Hoch, Bryan (February 21, 2009). "Melanoma a setback for Johnson: Veteran righty battling for more than 'pen spot after diagnosis". Retrieved 2009-02-22.
  5. ^ BASEBALL; Belt Pump Helps Pitcher With Diabetes