The Texas Rangers dropped a tough one last night to the Houston Astros in Game 3 of the ALCS by a score of 8 to 5. Texas leads the series 2-1 and will look to stretch their advantage back to two games as the in-state rivals square off again tonight. Last night's offense was powered, for the most part by one man, rookie third baseman Josh Jung. Jung belted two, two-run home runs in the contest accounting for four of the Rangers' five runs.
In a game that seemed like it could get out of hand at any moment, Jung kept the Rangers within striking distance with his two timely home runs. Jung has been producing at a high clip, not just last night, but throughout the entire postseason. With all of the Evan Carter love (I too am a huge Carter fan), Jung has somewhat been flying under the radar as a top rookie who is absolutely raking in the playoffs.
Jung has now played in eight playoff games and his numbers are off the charts. Sarah Langs reported that Jung is now tied with Jeremy Pena and Evan Longoria for the most extra-base hits by a rookie in their first eight playoff games. In those eight games, Jung is slashing .355/.364/.807, has three doubles, one triple, three home runs, scored eight runs, and driven in seven. He has struck out 11 times, which has been his norm this year, and will be something that he will no doubt look to reduce in the future.
Josh Jung was snubbed by not being a Gold Glove finalist
Not only has Jung swung a hot bat this postseason, but he has also flashed the leather. Unless someone has played the hot corner, I don't believe that they can fully appreciate the level of difficulty over there. It is about quick reaction times and long throws. Jung has made some fantastic plays in the field during the playoffs, which should come as no surprise to anyone as he has been doing it all season long.
Coming into the season, Jung's defense was a bit of a concern, but he put those thoughts to bed early on in the regular season. Yesterday, MLB announced the three finalists for Gold Glove at each position. The Rangers had five guys make the finals (C Jonah Heim, 1B Nathaniel Lowe, 2B Marcus Semien, SS Corey Seager, and RF Adolis Garcia) but Jung didn't find his name on the list. Was that a snub? I believe it was, and so does Corey Seager as you can tell by his quote below that was reported by Kennedi Landry of MLB.com.
"Yeah, you know, honestly for me personally I think he's a little snubbed. I'm sure he isn't going to come out and say that, but he should feel that way. What he's done over there, the guy is a vacuum. Anything that's hit to him, he catches. For my opinion, that's a Gold Glove finalist. Just how well he can play and the ability to catch the baseball is off the charts. "- Corey Seager
Was Jung's Gold Glove snub motivation for his multi home run performance last night? While it probably didn't hurt, he simply was doing what he does, which is hit baseballs really hard. It is great to have a young superstar anchoring the hot corner for the Rangers. While his future is bright, his time is also now. He isn't scared of the big moments and has proven that throughout both the regular season and playoffs.
Josh Jung is a fantastic player who had a great game last night. He is also motivated by winning and not by personal accolades. He will do everything that he can to help the Rangers get back on track tonight in Game 4 of the ALCS. Enjoy the ride!
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