Former UF catcher dies in Guatemala

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Former Florida catcher Todd Johannes, known as a hard worker and good teammate, died two weeks ago of natural causes in Guatemala at 41 years old.

Johannes played at Florida from 1996-99 under former Gator coach Andy Lopez. Last April, Johannes returned to Gainesville to attend the 20-year reunion of UF’s 1998 College World Series team at McKethan Stadium.

“Everybody loved him, appreciated his work ethic,” said former UF pitcher Jeff Cardozo, a teammate of Johannes. “He was a skinny guy, a backup catcher, he caught some of my bullpens, and he busted his butt to compete. He did anything you asked of him. Just a real team guy.”

Johannes was drafted by the Montreal Expos in 1999 and played four seasons in the Expos organization and one season in Independent League baseball before working with Gainesville-based medical device company Exactech for two years and Stryker Orthopedics for 10 years. He is survived by his father Michael, of Gainesville, and friends in Florida, California and Guatemala. A celebration of life event for Johannes will be held at The Swamp Restaurant in Gainesville on July 14 at 3 p.m.

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