The Padres have agreed to a two-year contract with right-hander Pierce Johnson, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports (via Twitter). The former Cubs top prospect will be guaranteed $5MM over the life of the deal, and the contract contains a team option for a third season. Johnson is represented by JBA Sports.
Johnson, 29 in May, spent the 2019 season pitching for the Hanshin Tigers of Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball, where he posted otherworldly numbers. In 58 2/3 innings of relief, he posted a 1.38 ERA with a 91-to-13 K/BB ratio (14.0 K/9, 2.0 BB/9). Unlike many big leaguers who enjoy overseas breakouts and return to find MLB deals, Johnson needed only one season of success to convince a Major League club that he was worthy of a multi-year deal.
More to come.