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Padres sign RHP Pierce Johnson to 2-yr deal with club option

December 24, 2019 GMT

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres have added a reliever who excelled in Japan, signing right-hander Pierce Johnson to a two-year contract.

Johnson’s deal includes a club option for 2022. The move was announced Monday by general manager A.J. Preller.

The 28-year-old Johnson spent last season as a setup man for the Hanshin Tigers of Nippon Professional Baseball in Japan, where he went 2-3 with a 1.38 ERA and 40 holds in 58 appearances. He racked up 91 strikeouts against 13 walks and allowed only two home runs in 58 2/3 innings.

Johnson was drafted 43rd overall by the Chicago Cubs in 2012 out of Missouri State. He is 3-2 with a 5.44 ERA in 38 major league relief outings for the Cubs (2017) and Giants (2018). He has made 74 starts in 147 minor league games, going 29-21 with a 3.26 ERA and 488 strikeouts in 467 innings.