Skip to Content

Diablos Fire Manager; Hire Manager Who Falsely Claimed He Served In Vietnam

The El Paso Diablos have announced that veteran and former Major League field manager, Tim Johnson, will replace Jorge Alvarez effective immediately.

?The ownership of the Diablos is dedicated to turning this, thus far, very disappointing season around, and we?re confident that turning the reigns of the team over to Field Manager Tim Johnson, will get us going in the right direction. We are very lucky that he was available, and look forward to bigger and better things with him in the dugout,” Matt LaBranche, Diablos Managing Partner, said in a news release.

Johnson’s Major League career included serving as field manager of the Toronto Blue Jays in 1998 before he was fired in March 1999 after he admitted he had falsely claimed to have served in Vietnam while in the Marines.

”I wanted to talk to them about a problem I had, guilt I had for so many years, 30 years,” Johnson said of meeting with the Blue Jays players Tampa, Fla. in early 1999, meaning guilt he felt for never having served in Vietnam while he was in the Marines, according to a New York Times report. ”We talked about it and the response was unbelievable. I got all choked up because of the support I got from these players.”

Last year, Johnson was involved in an unusual chain of events when he resigned in July from managing the Lake County Fielders in the North American Baseball League. In a show of support, 11 players did not play because they were upset about not being paid, according to a Chicago Sun-Times article. According to the article, Fielders hitting coach Pete LaCock, took over as interim manager. He put all listed pitchers in positional spots for the game and non-pitchers pitched. The opposing team, coached by Jose Canseco, did the same.

In 2003, the Lincoln Saltdogs came calling (Northern League/American Association, IND). Johnson took over as Manager, a position he held until 2008. While with the Saltdogs, Johnson?s career record was 314-252, and was once again awarded with Manager of the Year in 2006. In his six seasons with Lincoln, the Saltdogs made the playoffs 3 straight years winning the North Division each of those years. After leaving Lincoln, Johnson managed the Tucson Toros (Golden Baseball League) in 2008, and the Lake County Fielders in 2010 (North American League).

Johnson got his start in the majors when he signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1967 as an undrafted free agent. He then spent seven seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers and the Toronto Blue Jays. He got his first managerial job in 1987 in the Pioneer League.

The Diablos are in town this week Friday, June 8 ? June 13.

Information: 915-755-2000 or visit

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

Author Profile Photo



KVIA ABC 7 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content