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Randy Johnson's Comeback
Author: Peter Portero
Articles Category: Baseball News
Randy Johnson may have had a rocky start with the New York Yankees last year, but he seems set to make up for it this season. Long known as one of the premier pitchers of the game, Johnson has terrorized hitters since his American League days with his 95-mph fastball and the slider that is considered by many to be the best in the game. He’s a ten-time All-Star, five-time Cy Young Award winner (once in the AL, four times in the NL), and won the Triple Crown in 2002. His impressive list of accomplishments goes on and on.
So many people may ask, what happened?
On January 6, 2005, the Yanks obtained Johnson from the Diamondbacks for two pitchers, a catcher, and nine million dollars. Four days later he pushed a WCBS-TV cameraman who was chasing him down a Manhattan sidewalk after his induction physical for which his apology for the incident overshadowed the press conference announcing the trade. His spring training routine was also disrupted by a calf injury, which forced him to leave camp feeling unprepared. After this awkward beginning the 2005 season was very inconsistent for Johnson, he allowed 32 home runs, though he was 5-0 against the Red Sox.
However, paparazzi baiting and the trademark prima Donna scowl seem to be a thing of the past. Johnson showed up at this year’s MLB Spring Training all smiles. Apparently Yankees manager Joe Torre has taken Johnson under his wing and had a talk with him about how things work in the Big Apple; now Johnson has a new attitude. He says that intensive work on his body mechanics has honed his famous slider to new razor sharpness. During his second day of BP last week, the new and improved Johnson threw 67 pitches and the word is that he has never been better. Good news for fans of “The Big Unit!”