Baltimore Orioles closer Jim Johnson is a free agent for the 2014 season. However, before fans in Baltimore get worried about the status of his return there is some good news.
The Orioles have made it very clear that signing Johnson to a contract is a top priority for the organization. Obviously, the team would be insane not to secure a deal with him but sometimes it just does not work out in the end. Baltimore wants it to be publicly known that they will do whatever it takes to bring back one of the top closers in baseball.
“Jim Johnson is one of our core players,” president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said, according to Orioles.com. “Jimmy has done something historic in terms of the numbers of games he’s saved over the last couple years, so he’s established significant value. He came into the job last year, I think he had nine saves in his career, and over the last two years, he has over 100, 99.”
Johnson ranks first in the American League with 48 saves heading into Saturday’s contest. He will be unable to match his career-high 51 saves, which he set last year when he became the permanent closer.
Even though a 3-8 record is not ideal, at least his 2.90 earned run average is respectable. With that being said, the Orioles would like to see his nine blown saves drop next season when the team plans to make a legitimate run at a postseason berth.