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Josh Johnson on losing streak: "I feel like it's probably my fault"

      No one feels worse about the Marlins' losing streak than injured pitcher Josh Johnson, who remains on the disabled list with inflammation in his throwing shoulder. There is not a projected date for his return. Johnson continues to play catch on flat ground at varying distances but has not thrown off a mound since he last started on May 16. He has already missed four starts and says he continues to feel mild discomfort in the shoulder, though not nearly to the same degree as when he first went on the DL. What pains him the most is watching his teammates lose six straight and nine of their past 11 games.

      "I feel like it's probably my fault, not being out there and being on that mound, being that stopper, that guy they look at me for, " Johnson said.  "I'll take the blame for it. I need to be out there. I need to be helping."

      Asked how he can blame himself for an injury that was unpreventable, Johnson replied: "I should have taken care of it earlier."

      Johnson and the Marlins are being ultra-cautious. He said trainers have warned him that if he tries to rush back without being 100 percent, his shoulder problems could not only continue, but worsen.

       "With the shoulder, if you say, 'Okay, I'm going to come back a little early,' you get yourself in trouble," he said. "(Trainers said) 'If you try to come back while you're still feeling it, it's going to happen again, maybe not right away, but at some point during the season. It's going to flare back up and bite you.'' I don't want to be stuck in that situation, so we're making sure we're taking care of it properly."

     Johnson said there has been improvement, but that he also continues to feel some "movement" in the shoulder muscle, though not like before.

      "It's kind of moving around a little bit," Johnson said. "But, at first, it was going all over the place. So we've been doing some strengthening stuff."

     HANLEY RAMIREZ UPDATE: The injured shortstop (lower back strain) hit off a tee and played catch on Wednesday. could take batting practice on Thursdsay and could play in a rehab game at Single A Jupiter as early as Friday. There are a lot of "coulds," obviously. When I spoke to Ramirez after he came off the field a moment ago, he winced as he sat down at his locker and said he still felt "stiff, sore" but remained optimistic he'll be ready to return on June 14, the first day he's eligible to come off the DL.

      LINEUP SHUFFLE: Manager Edwin Rodriguez made some alterations to the lineup, benching Mike Stanton, dropping Logan Morrison into the fifth spot, and putting Greg Dobbs in the No. 3 hole. He said he wanted to take some pressure off Morrison, who has been slumping (3 for last 20), and give Stanton (6 for last 36) a one-day "break."

      "We're not scoring runs, and I'm a big part of the reason we're not scoring runs," Morrison said. "I deserve to be, I guess, demoted. It doesn't matter to me. It's not where I'm batting is the reason I'm not driving in runs, let's put it that way. You can't pop (up on) a 3-0 pitch right down the middle, like I did yesterday, a 3-1 pitch down the middle, you can't get jammed. Whatever it is, you got to figure it out and start winning games. Other than driving in runs, we're playing pretty well. You figure that out, then we'll be all right."

      Said Rodriguez: "Stanton, I want to give him a rest. I want to give him a breather. I want him to stay back a little and watch the game."

      Stanton made his major league debut on this day a year ago.

      "Sometimes he looks like Willie Mays out there, and some days you wonder," Rodriguez said.

      BRAD HAND, THE PRIDE OF CHASKA -- Rookie pitcher Brad Hand was the hottest thing going in his hometown of Chaska, MN., (pop: 24,545) on Tuesday when he made his big-league debut for the Marlins. The local hangout, Buffalo Wild Wings, was packed with friends watching the game, and a local television station showed up to film the scene. On top of that, some 20 friends and family members -- including the mayor of Chaska -- made the pilgrimage to South Florida to see Hand's performance in person. Hand produced a gem, holding the Braves to one hit -- an Alex Gonzalez home run -- over six innings in a 1-0 Marlins loss.

       GREG DOBBS ON "SLUMPS" -- "No offense is immune to it. I've seen it before. I've seen it in plenty of years past on other teams I've been on. Every offense goes through its fair share of struggles. The good teams, though, they right the ship faster than other teams do. There's no reason why this team can't do that, because we are a good team. Everybody wants to dwell on that word (slump), and they want to keep talking and dwelling on it. I'm not like that. The only slump you're in is the day that passed. You're not in a slump today because nothing's happened yet." 

      Here are tonight's lineups:

      Marlins: 1. Chris Coghlan, cf; 2. Omar Infante, 2b; 3. Greg Dobbs, 3b; 4. Gaby Sanchez, 1b; 5. Logan Morrison, lf; 6. John Buck, c; 7. Emilio Bonifacio, ss; 8. Scott Cousins, rf; 9. Ricky Nolasco, p.

       Braves: 1. Jordan Schafer, cf; 2. Alex Gonzalez, ss; 3. Chipper Jones, 3b; 4. Freddie Freeman, 1b; 6. Dan Uggla, 2b; 7. Eric Hinske, lf; 8. Matt Young, rf; 9. Derek Lowe, p.

      Umpires: HP -- Andy Fletcher; 1B -- Mike DiMuro; 2B -- Jim Reynolds; 3B -- Tim Welke.

Comments

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Clark

Lou,
To answer your question from an earlier thread, John Baker texted me that he will "Start throwing again next week. Hitting this week. It was just too early to play (before, when he tried). It isn't a setback because I just hit the 9-month post-op mark. I'm hopeful to be back in July at 100%"
He also informed me that he is reading Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged."
As for Sean West, yes, there's frustration about him within the organization.
I've never been to Madagascar, but I'd like to go.

-- Clark

Lou Vales

Josh, Just get healthy.Next year is the year.This year is gone. It's not your fault that the farm system is ranked 29th out of 30.We know whose fault that is.get healthy and no more BS about pitching through things.

Hanley,Sorry to hear you are still wincing and showing all your usual signs of discomfort.You said you were "Stiff", well,anyone who has seen you for the last 5 years just automatically assumed that was the problem.I hope you are able to work out the "stiffness",if not continue to seek medical attention.

Lou Vales

Okay!! They Win.Enough of this. I watch SloMo swing at another 3-1 pitch that was way out of the strike zone and then he swings at a 3-2 pitch out of the strike zone.Goes to 2B on the throwing error and then of course Buck and Bonafacio do not deliver with man in scoring position.

You guys watch this crap.I'm out.Will go run for 60 minutes on the elliptical, watch the Tigers for awhile and then go to Yahoo at 10:15 to see the final result of this BS.

I believe Logan's insistence on swinging at bad pitches on 3-0 and 3-1 have been the most disappointing aspects of this whole thing.

Lou Vales

Clark,Thank you for nice answer. I'm going to have an attendant bring up a $100.00 Gift Certificate for either Ruth Chris' or Morton's.Which do you prefer?

Just spoke to samson who apparently goes to every game.i don't know how many instances of bad fundamentals I could tolerate.

Lou Vales

Clark, If you get the opportunity ask the Phi Beta Kappa who is David O'Brien IF he may have changed the ETA for Uggla getting out of this "slump?" When you guys talk up in that big old pressbox,do you ever speculate that something may have occured to transform Uggla into a Pembroke Welsh Corgi?? Something is maybe different?Anything come to mind? Anything?Anything?

Flav C

Marlins hitters make Derek Lowe look like Cy Young and Nolasco make Braves hitters look like Pujols. Its nerve-wrecking.

Flav C

6th inning. I can feel Uggla coming outof his slump.

Flav C

A single! GUess i can play the lottery tomorrow!

Stan M

The trouble with this darn slump is that the Marlins are still in almost every game. I can't find anything else that is nice to say. Lou, tell our new friends who it was that stood alone during the off season saying that Coghlan would be just fine in CF. There is so much to like about this team. As usual, the team really doesn't have a major hole or have a need for a highly priced free agent. A tweak here and there is needed, however, and our owner has a history of ignoring these needs every year. Johnson will be a key and I fear for his health in both the short and long run. Does anyone know exactly when Sanabia will be able to pitch again? Hand did just fine, but I fear that all of those fly balls could start to travel a little longer, especially in smaller ballparks on the road.

Lou Vales

Stan,Just got home.

To all our new friends, Stan stood alone.

I did not think he could play CF. I also thought he could hit and was not a fluke.

I was wrong on both counts.

Lou Vales

Clark,Is DOB playing bad music in the pressbox?

16 RBI's!!!! 7 more than Tony Cloninger had in one game against the Giants>

laurelbowie

The Marlins get a new hitting coach. Yes! The young guys weren't showing any kind of improvement under Malle, so something had to change. Lou, Eduardo says the first thing he's going to stress is better pitch selection. Sounds simple, but maybe he can help get the bats going. Maybe.

Lou Vales

Test

Lou Vales

One of my best posts just DISAPPEARED!! POOF!!!!

Lou Vales

I hope they are proud of getting a coach fired.By the end of July they can have a manager getting fired on their belts.

Erick

I think it's a joke that the entire blame is basically being put on the hitting coach. He doesn't have a bat in his hands.

How about firing the entire bench? Starting with Auntie Wes.

Samson's Boyfriend

Well gang ,another tough loss...after fredi shocked everyone in the free world by pitching to Stanton in the 9th,with ozzie in deck, Stanton comes thru..Too bad the home plate umpire took the bat out of Gabys hands with that horrendous strike three call....The big story here is the Hatchet Job done on John Mallee...The Spanish Mafia of Tony Perez and Edwin, had the hit put on Mallee to make Tony Perez son ,of all people,the hitting coach...This reeks. A week ago if someone would have suggested this move,they would have been laughed at, and taken to a doctor for a mental observation....Fire 10 yr, Marlin hitting instructor John Mallee for Eduardo Effin Perez???You gotta be Effin Kiddin Me..Wonder who put the knife in first Tony P or Edwin...Edwin your next and when it happens to you ,you can say to Tony P.. e tu Brutus !!

Lou Vales

Clark,Another question for David. Has he ever totally recovered from being Blank Slapped by Tim Hudson in Florida? He not only gets verbally harangued by a player but his employer does not back him up. It would be like you having JJ get in your face about something stupid and the Herald not backing you up.Of course the difference is the Herald probably has respect for its reporters.Well,tell david he continues to have my support after getting punked by a 5'10" pitcher. Ask him to select a song for after the game.

Stan M

The players seem terribly upset with the firing. There are several factors to consider. Foremost is that something, anything, had to be done. And yes, situational hitting has been awful. I have two questions. Why fire him. He has been a long term organization man and should have been given another role. I know nothing about this new coach, but I do wonder if the team is leaning too heavily on Latino personnel. Especially as this reeks of nespotism. All that being said, we must see what happens and give him the benefit of the doubt.

One other point. This Dunn fellow can look unhittable and then someone pops a long ball. I just wonder if he is tipping his pitches.

Samson's Boyfriend

Stan the Man...Dunn rely's on his Heat and has to pitch inside more,cause guys are sitting on his fastball and are able to put a good swing on it,without the fear in the back of their mind off being knocked off the plate...

Stan M

Samson,
Good points. However, with his inherent wildness, I would think players are careful up there at the plate. What you say about Dunn is true of all pitchers since MLB decided to oversee their tendencies. A terrible move in my opinion. Really in everybody's opinion I guess...except for the union of course

bob

Don't be too hard on yourself JJ. These are the guys who couldn't score a run when the pitching limited the Braves to two hits and one run. With performance like that, the only way JJ could help is if he starts hitting homers.

Lou Vales

bob, TREMENDOUS comment!!!

I really hope these guys realize they got that man canned.It's somewhat ironical in that we had just started discussing the date Edwin will be dispatched--and he WILL be dispatched through no fault of his own. Must finally begin to wonder if Coghlin was a flash in the pan, Stanton is 21 ans still a couple of years from really getting it, Dominguezwill not be here in time tohelp,IF he can help,SloMO only looks like he can deliver behind in the count, SAnchez is solid but can be pitched to, Infante is reverting back to his norm after a yera where he had a tremendous average on balls Put In Play, no need to comment on Buck, THE Bench, Dobbs will not hit 340 but is a really good hitter, 2 man pitching staff of starters, inconsistent bullpen including a whack job closer, NO help in Tripe or Double A and somehow this is Edwin's fault'

July 3--In the words of Hawk Harrelson--"HE Gone."

Lou Vales

I always get a kick out of the Players Association after a pitcher breaks a guy's wrist with obvious intent, and put the guy out of action for month and then they defend the pitcher as to suspension. I guess it's like hockey where you cheap shot a guy into a coma,almost killing him amd putting career on hold for up tpa yera and you protest the 20 game suspension with union backing.

It's a wonderful thing that pro athletes have demonstrable skills in a sport because Walmart does not have that many checker positions open.

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