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Elliot Johnson (baseball)

Elliot Tyler Johnson (born March 9, 1984) is an American former professional baseball utility player. He played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Tampa Bay Rays, Kansas City Royals, Atlanta Braves and Cleveland Indians.

Elliot Johnson
Elliot Johnson on May 7, 2013.jpg
Johnson with the Kansas City Royals
Utility player
Born: (1984-03-09) March 9, 1984 (age 35)
Safford, Arizona
Batted: Switch Threw: Right
MLB debut
April 5, 2008, for the Tampa Bay Rays
Last MLB appearance
May 2, 2014, for the Cleveland Indians
MLB statistics
Batting average.215
Home runs12
Runs batted in69

Professional careerEdit

Tampa Bay RaysEdit

Johnson with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2012

Johnson signed with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as a non-drafted free agent on June 29, 2002 out of Thatcher High School in Thatcher, Arizona and began his professional career with the Princeton Devil Rays rookie level team in Princeton, West Virginia. In 2005, he played for the Visalia Oaks of Visalia, California (A class A minor-league affiliate of the Devil Rays). In the same season, Johnson got promoted to class AA with the Montgomery Biscuits, then in 2007 moved to the Durham Bulls to play with the class AAA minor league affiliate.

Johnson made the Tampa Bay Rays opening day roster for the 2008 season. On April 5, 2008, he made his debut against the New York Yankees as the team's designated hitter. He had four at bats and recorded his first major league hit, a single off of Andy Pettitte.[1] He had three hits in 19 at-bats over seven games for the Devil Rays that season before he was sent back down to Durham. He spent the next two seasons in the minors, missing 2 months in 2009 with a fractured thumb. In 2010, he hit .319 for Durham and was selected to appear in the Triple-A All-Star game. He was also named the Bulls most valuable player.

John Romano of The St. Petersburg Times wrote in March 2011 that he was likely one of three players competing for two spots on the Rays bench, with the other two being outfielder Sam Fuld and first baseman Casey Kotchman.[2] Johnson made the opening day roster, along with Fuld. On May 15, 2011, he hit his first major league home run against Baltimore Orioles pitcher Jake Arrieta.[3] On August 12, 2011 he was one of 5 Rays to hit solo home runs off CC Sabathia in a 5-1 Tampa Bay victory.[4] Johnson was designated for assignment on February 5, 2013.[5][6] In part of three seasons with the Devil Rays/Rays, he hit .223 with 10 homers and 50 RBI.

Kansas City RoyalsEdit

Johnson was acquired by the Kansas City Royals on February 12, 2013 from the Rays as the player to be named later in the James Shields trade.[7] He was designated for assignment on August 15, 2013[8] and released on August 19.[9] In 79 games, he hit .179.

Atlanta BravesEdit

Johnson was claimed off waivers by the Atlanta Braves on August 22, 2013. He played in his first game as a Brave on the same day. In his first four at bats, Johnson singled twice. He hit his first RBI as a Brave three days later on August 25, 2013. After the season, Johnson was non-tendered by the Braves, making him a free agent.[10] In 32 games, he hit .261.

Cleveland IndiansEdit

On January 27, 2014 Johnson signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians.[11] The contract included an invitation to Major League Spring Training.[12] On March 22, it was announced that Johnson had made the opening day roster,[13] however he was designated for assignment on May 3, after appearing in just seven games with two hits (both doubles) in 19 at-bats.[14] Johnson cleared waivers on May 9, and was sent to the Triple–A Columbus Clippers.[15] He elected free agency in October 2014.[16]

Los Angeles DodgersEdit

Johnson signed a minor league deal with the Texas Rangers on February 23, 2015.[17] On March 31, he was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers in exchange for cash considerations.[18] The Dodgers assigned him to the AAA Oklahoma City Dodgers,[19] where he played in 55 games and had a batting average of .244.[20]


  1. ^ "Gomes, Rays pound Pettitte, dump Yankees". Associated Press. April 5, 2008. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  2. ^ John Romano. "Perspective is strength of Tampa Bay Rays hopeful Sam Fuld". The St. Petersburg Times. Archived from the original on September 14, 2011. Retrieved March 10, 2011.
  3. ^ "J.J. Hardy hits grand slam in Orioles' lopsided win". Associated Press. May 15, 2011. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  4. ^ "Rays hit 5 Solo Homeruns vs Sabathia", The Baseball Page
  5. ^ Mooney, Roger (February 5, 2013). "Tampa Bay Rays officially sign Farnsworth, Kelly Johnson". Retrieved February 5, 2013.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Gleeman, Aaron (February 5, 2013). "Rays designate Reid Brignac and Elliot Johnson for assignment". Retrieved February 5, 2013.
  7. ^ Nicholson-Smith, Ben (February 12, 2013). "Royals Acquire Elliot Johnson". Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  8. ^ Dutton, Bob (August 15, 2013). "Royals cut Elliot Johnson to make room for Emilio Bonifacio". Kansas Cit y Star. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  9. ^ Adams, Steve (August 19, 2013). "Royals Release Elliot Johnson". Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  10. ^ Twitter / Braves: #Braves declined to tender contracts to infielders Paul Janish and Elliot Johnson, and RHP Cristhian Martinez
  11. ^ "Indians, Elliot Johnson reach deal". Associated Press. January 27, 2014. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  12. ^ Hoynes, Paul (January 27, 2014). "Cleveland Indians sign infielder Elliot Johnson to minor league deal". Cleveland Plain Dealer. Retrieved January 27, 2014.
  13. ^ Hoynes, Paul (March 22, 2014). "Vinnie Pestano, Elliot Johnson make Cleveland Indians' roster; Jeff Francoeur, Matt Carson cut". Cleveland Plain Dealer. Northeast Ohio Media Group. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  14. ^ Ellsesser, Stephen (May 3, 2014). "Indians designate Johnson, recall Hagadone". Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  15. ^ Hoynes, Paul (May 9, 2014). "Jason Kipnis cleared to do "low level' baseball activities: Terry Francona's quick hits". Cleveland Plain Dealer. Northeast Ohio Media Group. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  16. ^ Polishuk, Mark (October 6, 2014). "Players Who Have Elected Minor League Free Agency". Retrieved October 6, 2014.
  17. ^ Gleeman, Aaron (February 23, 2015). "Rangers sign Elliot Johnson". NBC Sports. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  18. ^ Todd, Jeff (March 31, 2015). "Dodgers Acquire Elliot Johnson From Rangers". MLB Trade Rumors.
  19. ^ Hoornstra, J.P. (April 7, 2015). "Revealed: Opening Day roster for Triple-A Oklahoma City". LA Daily News. Retrieved April 7, 2015.
  20. ^ "Elliot Johnson minor league statistics & history". Baseball Reference.

External linksEdit