Prospect Johnson's season cut short by injury

Prospect Johnson's season cut short by injury

CHICAGO -- Micah Johnson has been shut down for the remainder of the season with a strained left hamstring, according to comments made by White Sox general manager Rick Hahn prior to Wednesday's contest.

Johnson, the club's fourth-ranked prospect, has been dealing with that lingering hamstring issue but felt something in the front of his knee during a swing for Triple-A Charlotte the other day. He was pulled from the game and brought to Chicago for evaluation.

"It turned out that even though the pain was from the front of the leg, it was actually related to the same hamstring strain, so we've elected to shut him down," Hahn said. "He's done for the season. We're going to give the strain 4-6 weeks to heal, and we expect he should be 100 percent and go into next season without restriction."

Over stops with Charlotte and Double-A Birmingham, the left-handed-hitting Johnson posted a .294 average with five homers, 44 RBIs and 22 stolen bases in 35 attempts. Hahn believes the hamstring might have cost Johnson some of the explosiveness that contributed to his 84 stolen bases last season.

The White Sox view Johnson as a second baseman going forward, even in a crowded position that includes incumbent Gordon Beckham, Carlos Sanchez, Marcus Semien and Tyler Saladino.

"We think he's made a lot of advancements in the last two seasons," said Hahn of Johnson's defense. "He made a huge jump between '12 and '13 and another nice jump between '13 and '14.

"I do feel the hamstring injury took away a little bit of the explosiveness of his speed. He's been fighting through it. He wanted to continue to fight through it. He did not want to be shut down and felt he could play through it, but we just thought it would be more prudent to allow the thing a chance to heal and put it completely behind him so he can return to being that type of primarily speed-based player when he gets back."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.