hasn't stepped foot on a major league baseball diamond in 2017, nor has he swung a bat in his home of South Korea. A troubled offseason featuring his since 2009 helped lead to the infielder being .
He’s had to watch his former Pirates teammates struggle through a mediocre season and a terrible September (5-12) forcing a slow slide out of postseason contention. Kang expressed his regret toon Tuesday.
“I don’t know how much of a difference I would have made, but still, it’s been frustrating to watch the club lose,” Kang said. “Even when you lose, it’s always better to do it as a team. I wished I could have helped the team. I am sorry to my teammates and fans (for the drunk driving incident).”
The 30-year-old fled the scene of the accident that precipitated his arrest, for which he later apologized. In addition, Kang wasin July 2016 on allegations of sexual assault stemming from a road trip in Chicago that season.
The Pirates have apparently contributed to Kang’s training regimen, shipping him a pitching machine that throws a combination of fastballs and breaking balls. The gesture hasn’t been lost on him.
“I am really thankful that they tell me they still need me,” he said. “I want to become a better person and a better player.”
Currently on the Pirates’ restricted list, he plans to play in thebeginning in October in the hopes of returning to the majors down the road.
In 229 games with the Pirates over two seasons, Kang has batted .273/.355/.483 with 36 home runs and eight stolen bases.
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