Sunday, October 14, 2012

Dave Johnson (#363)

Dave Johnson (I refuse to refer to him by that ridiculous nickname, suited to a small child) was the Topps all-rookie 2nd baseman in 1966.

Johnson was signed by the O's in 1962, and played in the minors for 3 seasons, early-on as a shortstop, before switching over to 2nd base.

Dave made his major-league debut with the Orioles in April 1965, and played in 20 games (including starting every game between 5/10 and 5/20) before being sent down in mid-June.

Johnson took over the starting 2nd base job on day 1 of the 1966 season, starting 125 games there. He finished 3rd in the Rookie of the Year voting. He was the team's regular 2nd baseman until they began phasing in rookie Bob Grich in 1972.

After the '72 season, Dave was traded to the Braves (with catcher Johnny Oates and pitchers Pat Dobson and Roric Harrison) for catcher Earl Williams, the 1971 NL Rookie of the Year.

Johnson spent 2 seasons with the Braves. In 1972 he hit 43 home runs, 25 more than his previous high. After 1 game in 1975, Dave was released by the Braves, and spent the next 2 seasons playing in Japan.

He played for the Phillies from 1977-78, backing up Ted Sizemore at 2B and Richie Hebner at 1B. In August 1978, Dave was traded to the Cubs for pitcher Larry Anderson. After 24 games with the Cubs, he was released at the end of the season.

After his playing career, Johnson managed the Mets (1984-90, winning the World Series in '86), Reds (1993-95), Orioles (1996-97), Dodgers (1999-2000), and Nationals (2011-12).

He was last seen watching his Nationals blow a 6-run lead in game 5 of the NLDS 2 days ago.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

When you have a bland, common name like his (and I have one very similar to it), you use whatever nickname you can!