Jung Ho Kang To Join Triple-A Soon?

(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /
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It appears that Jung Ho Kang will be taking the next step in his road back to the Major Leagues sooner rather than later

After receiving a new work visa last month, Pittsburgh Pirates’ slugging infielder Jung Ho Kang returned to the United States and was ready to resume his professional baseball career. After spending time in extended Spring Training, Kang joined the High-A Bradenton Marauders last week.

Since joining the Marauders, Kang has done nothing but hit. Wednesday night was Kang’s fifth game for the Marauders and it saw him hit his second home run at the High-A level.

After going 1-for-4 with his home run on Wednesday night, Kang is now 7-for-17 at Bradenton. He has hit two home runs, walked five times, and driven in seven runs.

The biggest news of all might be what he has done defensively. Kang has started at third base in his first game and served as the team’s designated hitter last night. In the three games sandwiched in between he played shortstop.

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After suffering a catastrophic knee injury it was unclear how effective Kang could be at shortstop moving forward. However, all reports are he has looked just fine at shortstop for the Marauders. This includes Kang turning three double plays while playing shortstop at Bradenton.

With everything going even better than could have been expected at Bradenton, Kang now appears ready for the next step in his climb back to the Major Leagues. According to the Pirates’ T.V. broadcast on AT&T SportsNet on Wednesday night, Kang will join Triple-A Indianapolis as soon as this weekend.

If Kang can continue to play at Triple-A the way he has at High-A, then, odds are, he will be back in Pittsburgh sooner rather than later. And if he can continue to play an effective shortstop, then that is an added bonus.

Colin Moran has done a fine job at third base for the Pirates this season owning a .275/.356/.419/.775 slash line, .336 wOBA, and wRC+ of 113. Meanwhile, Pirate shortstops, mostly Jordy Mercer, own a .254/.316/.384/.700 slash line, .295 wOBA, and a wRC+ of 86 this season.

Regardless of where he plays upon arriving, Jung Ho Kang appears to be closing in on a return to Pittsburgh as it appears Kang will be receiving a promotion from High-A to Triple-A at some point later this week.