Johnson gets extra rest as Marlins-Mets rained out

BY foxsports • May 17, 2011

Josh Johnson wasn't worried about making his next start, even though a line drive off his right forearm left him with a gnarly bruise.

He certainly doesn't mind having an extra day of rest, though.

The Marlins' game against the New York Mets scheduled for Tuesday night was postponed because of rain about two hours before it was set to begin, pushing everyone in the Florida rotation back a day and giving the staff ace some extra time off.

''I'm feeling good,'' Johnson said in the clubhouse Tuesday afternoon. ''I played catch today and didn't have any problems, so I should be ready to go.''

Johnson was pitching with a runner aboard in the fifth inning Monday night when Carlos Beltran lined a shot back at him. Johnson said he saw the ball the entire way and instinctively tried to knock it down, and it ricocheted off his forearm toward the right side of the infield.

The Marlins' training staff rushed from the dugout to check on Johnson, who threw a couple of warmup pitches before remaining in the game. He got out of the inning without allowing any runs, but the forearm tightened up on him when he was back in the dugout.

He was lifted in the sixth inning, and Florida eventually won the game 2-1 in 11.

''I think the rain is probably good for him,'' Marlins manager Edwin Rodriguez said. ''I think with J.J. that extra day will help him a lot.''

Rain has been falling in the New York area for several days, and with heavier showers in the forecast for Tuesday night, the teams decided to call the game off plenty early.

It will be made up July 18, an off day for both teams.

''Are you kidding?'' Mets manager Terry Collins asked, when team GM Sandy Alderson came out to the dugout to tell him the game was being postponed. At the time, the clouds had broken for the first time in days and sun was shining down on the water-logged field.

There have been 28 postponements in the majors this season, including the Pittsburgh at Washington washout earlier Tuesday. Last year, there were a total of 21 all season.

''Yesterday it was raining and we played,'' Rodriguez said with a sly smile. ''Today it's not raining and we don't play.''

The Mets and the Marlins are both sliding their rotations back a day.

Jonathon Niese will pitch Wednesday night when the Mets open a two-game set against the Nationals at Citi Field. Ricky Nolasco will pitch for the Florida Marlins when they host the Chicago Cubs in the opener of a two-game series.

The Mets also plan to put slugging third baseman David Wright on the disabled list prior to Wednesday night's game with a stress fracture in his lower back.

An MRI exam on Monday revealed the injury. The team was poised to make the move before Tuesday night's game, even bringing first baseman Nick Evans up from Triple-A Buffalo, but will hold off on making it official for another day.

Alderson said the course of treatment ''non-surgical'' and typically requires rest.

''Hopefully get this thing knocked out in two weeks and be right back at it,'' Wright said before Monday night's game. ''I was being counted on to help this team win games and now I won't be able to do that for two weeks.''

Wright said he wasn't using the injury as an excuse for his performance, which has lagged far behind his career average. He's hitting just .226 with six homers and 18 RBIs.

''By no means is this thing a cop-out or an excuse for what I've done so far,'' he said. ''I've played through it and when I take the field, I expect to play at a certain level, and thus far I haven't been able to play at that level.''

NOTES: Marlins SS Hanley Ramirez said he's staying upbeat about his play. Ramirez went 0 for 6 and stranded seven runners Monday night, dropping his average to .204. ... Mets SS Ruben Tejada was in the clubhouse after being recalled from Buffalo after Monday night's game. He is expected to play 2B and Justin Turner will slide over to 3B in place of Wright.



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