#2 Josh Jung's Broken Thumb
Josh Jung is still in his rookie season. That is amazing since it does feel like he has already been on the team for five season. He started the All-Star game this season. He has been a terrific defender and was having one of the best offensive seasons among third baseman this year until he got injured. On August 6th against the Marlins Jorge Soler hit a 109.4 mph line drive that bent Jung's hand back and broke his thumb. It not only ended his attempt at winning the Rookie of the Year award, but it left a massive hole in the Rangers' lineup.
Ezequiel Duran unlike when Seager went down was not able to fill in effectively in the field or in the batters' box. He eventually ceded most of the playing time to Josh Smith. The team struggled in Jung's absence and at one point lost 16 of 20 games. The middle of the order suffered as Jung is one of the best-run producers on the team. Texas had to wait for Jung's thumb to heal and then for him to rehab. The team was just trying to survive long enough for Jung to come back.
Finally on Monday, September 18th it was announced that Jung would be returning to the active roster. Since Jung returned Texas has an 8-4 record and has jumped from third in the division to first and is now one win away from winning the division. It turns out Jung was one of the most important players on the roster. The team was missing Jung's defense and his bat. Since returning it has unlocked the offense and they have been just as productive as they were before his injury.
This team just held on for dear life through that terrible stretch. They were missing guys and now the reinforcements have come just in time to finish off the season strong. They are playing in a way that will allow them to be a hard out in October.