The news for Nick Johnson isn't totally unexpected ... but it still doesn't take the sting out for him. Johnson, who has been sidelined since mid-May with a wrist problem, has been diagnosed with a small tear in the ulnar-side ligament in that wrist, and will miss the rest of 2008.
If you're counting, that's the entire 2007 season lost to injury because of a broken leg. And outside of 38 games, the entire '08 season with a bum wrist. That's 286 games lost to injury during two seasons that constitute the prime of Johnson's career at ages 28 and 29. Add in the 155 games he didn't play in during 2003 and 2004, that's pretty much three seasons out of his first eight wiped out due to injury.
You can make the argument that the wrist injury could turn out to have more of an adverse effect to Johnson's career than the horrific broken leg. You never hear people talk about a broken leg lingering throughout a players career. But for a baseball player, especially an accomplished hitter who knows how to get on base (career OBP of .396) to have a torn ligament in his wrist, it's something that has a chance to linger, affect his swing later on, and worst case scenario: become chronic.*
*I am not a doctor.