Johnson sorry incident happened
The Big Unit got into a confrontation on a Manhattan sidewalk with a television cameraman Monday, then apologized in a statement released later in the day.
Johnson passed all exams Monday, but the Yankees awaited results of blood and other tests that needed more time. Still, New York went ahead and scheduled a news conference for Tuesday afternoon to announce the completion of its drawn-out trade with Arizona. In a deal agreed to on Dec. 30, the Yankees are sending the Diamondbacks pitcher Javier Vazquez and Brad Halsey, catcher Dioner Navarro and $9 million.
Johnson, a five-time Cy Young Award winner, gets a $32 million, two-year contract extension that runs through 2007.
Vazquez passed his physical with the Diamondbacks on Monday night. Navarro had to take two physicals Monday -- one for Arizona and one for Los Angeles, which is acquiring him as part of a separate deal. The Dodgers are receiving four prospects from the Diamondbacks for outfielder Shawn Green and $10 million. Green and Arizona reached an agreement in principle Sunday on a $32 million, three-year contract, which would allow that trade to be finalized.
Green also passed his physical with Arizona.
Johnson got a taste Monday of how much attention star ballplayers can attract in New York. Walking along a Manhattan avenue, he put his long right arm up to block a camera from WCBS-TV after he left his Manhattan hotel.
Johnson, who was accompanied by Yankees director of team security Jerry Laveroni, made contact with the camera, station spokeswoman Audrey Pass said.
"Get out of my face, that's all I ask," Johnson said, according to a video of what occurred, which was posted on the station's Web site.
"No cameras," Laveroni said.
"Don't get in my face," Johnson then said. "I don't care who you are. Don't get in my face."
"I'm just taking a picture," said the cameraman, identified by the station as Vinny Everett.
Responded Johnson: "Don't get in my face, and don't talk back to me, all right."
Johnson issued a statement through agent Alan Nero that was distributed by the Yankees.
"Regarding the unfortunate incident that happened this morning as I was on my way to take a physical, I hope that everyone will understand that the past few days have been a bit overwhelming and I wish I had handled the situation differently," Johnson said. "I am very sorry it happened."
Pass later issued a statement for the station that said "in the regular course of CBS2's newsgathering on a midtown street, Randy Johnson took exception to our cameraman's effort to photograph him, attempted to block his lens and insisted that the camera be removed. Johnson has since apologized."
Johnson is scheduled to appear Tuesday on CBS's "Late Show with David Letterman."
Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press
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