Johnson happy with slider in Thursday's start

Johnson happy with slider in Thursday's start

PEORIA, Ariz. -- With each start he makes this spring, Josh Johnson has a fairly specific agenda that he wants to follow.

On Thursday against the Brewers, it was using more of his slider, a pitch that, when balanced against his low- to mid-90s fastball, has been a plus pitch for him at times during his career.

Of the 60 pitches he threw in four innings of an 8-0 loss to the Brewers, six were sliders, which rates as the most he's thrown in any of his three outings this spring.

"I wanted to get that thing a little more locked in," he said. "I threw some good ones … a front-door slider to a righty and a back-door to a lefty. It was pretty good."

Johnson allowed one run on two hits in four innings -- his longest start of the spring -- and walked one with three strikeouts.

Johnson also threw 13 changeups and one curveball and only needed eight pitches to get through his last inning. He'll likely throw in upwards of 75 pitches his next time out.

"I have got no complaints," Johnson said. "I'm feeling good, feeling strong. I stayed tall and used my leverage."

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.