COLUMBIA, SC (TheBigSpur.com) -- Two of South Carolina's elite arms went on Day 1 of the draft and while it took a bit longer to expected for the third to come off the board, the third in the trio was finally selected.
Right-handed pitcher Tyler Johnson was selected in the fifth round with the No. 147 overall pick by the Chicago White Sox. The slot money for the pick is $339,800.
Johnson, who missed five weeks of the season with arm soreness, was 1-2 with 10 saves and a 2.39 ERA in 19 relief appearances, allowed nine runs, seven earned, on 20 hits in 26.1 innings with 15 walks to 40 strikeouts and opponents batting .204 against him.
He pitched his best at the end of the year going 4 1/3 scoreless innings of relief with just one hit allowed and one walk with a season-high eight strikeouts to earn the win in a 7-4 victory against Vanderbilt at the SEC Tournament. He also pitched 1 2/3 perfect innings with three strikeouts in the final regular season game of the year against Georgia.
Johnson emerged as the team's top arm out of the bullpen against Florida in 2016 and hung onto his closer's role, when healthy, for his final year and a half on campus. Some teams believe he can be a starting pitcher though, and look back to his complete game against UNC Wilmington in the 2016 NCAA Regional.
A Midlothian, Va. native, Johnson was not drafted out of high school and only had offers from Army and Navy but went on to become a Team USA performer and fifth-round MLB Draft pick.