Any thoughts of Jung Ho Kang helping the Pittsburgh Pirates in August or September are now on hold.
Kang, who has been on the minor-league disabled list with a wrist injury, is now having season-ending surgery on his left wrist as first reported by Naver Sports in Korea.
The recovery is about three months, which all but ends his comeback attempt this season.
Kang’s off the field troubles were well documented, but he got back into the country and was doing all the right things before the injury.
He had some good moments in his minor-league rehab, hitting a combine .310/.408/.517 with three homers and 16 RBI in 16 games split between Bradenton and Indianapolis.
Kang is under contact through next season at $5.5 million and will likely be in spring training with the Pirates.
The big question is whether or not he can make the team after now not seeing a major league pitch in now two-plus years.
The best case scenario now for Kang is that he likely competes for a bench job as a backup third baseman and shortstop.
Hopefully he recovers 100 percent and we will see what he can still do when the club reports to Bradenton in 2019.