Angels waive Dave Johnson, who ponders Triple-A contract

March 18, 1992|By Bill Free | Bill Free,Staff Writer

Dave Johnson's seemingly endless struggle to pitch in the major leagues received another setback yesterday when the California Angels requested waivers on the former Orioles right-hander for the purpose of giving him his unconditional release.

"The life and times of Dave Johnson continue," Johnson said from Mesa, Ariz., last night. "If I get the guarantee from the Angels that I'll get a chance to come back up from Triple-A and pitch if I do well down there, I'll sign a Triple-A contract with them tomorrow [today]. But before I do that, Whitey Herzog [Angels general manager], Buck Rodgers [manager] and Marcel Lachemann [pitching coach] have to get together and make sure they're all in agreement on that point."

Johnson said he was released because Herzog and Rodgers weren't on the same page.

"Buck Rodgers had never seen me pitch and didn't know what he was looking for out of me," said Johnson. "And Whitey had been saying that I had a good chance to be the team's fourth or fifth starter. I thought I had a good shot at it because they don't really have any big-name pitchers."

Johnson, 32, appeared in three exhibition games for the Angels, and allowed 11 hits and six runs in seven innings.

Said Johnson's wife, Tera: "Dave wasn't exactly killing them this spring, but he had hoped to get more of a chance."

Johnson, a resident of Middle River, was signed as a free agent by the Angels on Jan. 8. He was 4-8 with a 7.07 ERA with the Orioles last season.

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