JUPITER -- Josh Johnson was back on the mound in a game situation for the first time since May 16, looking J.J.-esque at times and not as much at others. But he was pleased with the 41-pitch outing in the Marlins' 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals at Roger Dean Stadium.
Greg Dobbs was the big star, going 3-for-3 with three RBI on a home run and two doubles. But most of the attention was aimed at Johnson, who is returning this season from a shoulder injury that cost him most of the 2011 season.
Johnson pitched a 1-2-3 first inning in which he struck out John Jay and Matt Holliday, the latter on a 3-2 change-up that surprised the Cardinals hitter. He retired the first two batters to start the second before giving up a single to Matt Adams, double to Tyler Greene and walk to Daniel Descalso, at which point he had reached his pitch limit and was lifted for Wade LeBlanc.
He was happy with the "pain-free" performance, however. Here's what he had to say afterward: