Marlins 1, Tigers 0

BY foxsports • March 10, 2009

Josh Johnson maintained his dominant form for the Florida Marlins. Johnson, projected to be Florida's No. 2 starter, allowed five hits over five innings in the Marlins' 1-0 win over the Detroit Tigers on Monday night. Johnson walked catcher Dusty Ryan with two outs in the fifth inning, the first one he's allowed this spring. "JJ walked a guy? He's going to run extra posts tomorrow," manager Fredi Gonzalez joked. "Usually I'm in bed by 8 o'clock, so I kind of wasn't ready for it. I was little tired out there. This is my bed time," he said, joking about the 7:05 p.m. start. Dallas McPherson, who's trying to win a corner infield job, drove in Florida's only run with a double off Brandon Lyon in the sixth inning. McPherson had 42 home runs in the minors in 2008. Johnson hasn't allowed a run in 13 innings over two Grapefruit League starts. Will he allow a run this spring? "Hopefully not," he said. "That'd be nice not to give up any runs. That's what we're shooting for." Johnson, who threw 73 pitches, said he threw 12 changeups. "I haven't thrown 12 since about four or five years ago," said Johnson, who went 7-1 last year after coming back in July from Tommy John surgery. Right-hander Rick Porcello, the Tigers' top pitching prospect, had a solid Grapefruit League debut for Detroit. He allowed five hits over three scoreless innings. He struck out one with no walks. "He showed a lot of poise," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "He's a very impressive young pitcher with well above average stuff." Porcello is 20 but he's a longshot to win a rotation spot, even though he has pitched well while Dontrelle Willis and Nate Robertson have struggled. One of the five hits Porcello allowed was a clean single by Cody Ross that left the infield. The four others were infield hits or singles off hard-hit balls the infielders couldn't handle. The Marlins had runners in scoring position in each inning but failed to score off the 27th overall pick of the 2007 draft. The Tigers made three errors at Roger Dean Stadium. "It's not the best ballpark to pitch in because the dirt's real hard," said Leyland, who said Porcello will get another start. "For a sinkerballer, this kind of ballpark is rough but I thought he did very well." Notes: Marlins utility man Alfredo Amezaga has left Team Mexico and the World Baseball Classic because of stiffness in his left knee. The Marlins don't know the severity of the injury. He was on his way to Miami late Monday to be examined by a doctor. "Of course we're concerned," Gonzalez said. "It didn't sound like it was real bad. But he hasn't seen a doctor yet so we'll wait and see before we start panicking." ... Amezaga experienced the stiffness after Mexico's 17-7 loss to Australia on Sunday night. He hit leadoff, played center field and went 2-for-5 with a home run.