Today, the Jays inked arbitration-eligible left fielder Reed Johnson to a one-year, $3.27MM deal. I had considered Johnson a non-tender candidate a couple of weeks ago after he posted a .625 OPS in an injury-shortened 2007. He was much better in ’06, posting a career-best .869 OPS as the team’s leadoff hitter.
The Jays have six outfielders on their 40-man roster: Buck Coats, Johnson, Adam Lind, Alex Rios, Matt Stairs, and Vernon Wells. Since Frank Thomas can only DH, Johnson, Stairs, and Lind will all have to battle for playing time in left field. Lind could be the odd man out. The 24 year-old might yet become an above average hitter, even for a left fielder.