By Jason Shetler
The road to recovery for Jung-Ho Kang is very close now, as the Pirates have announced that he will begin a rehab assignment on Monday for AAA Indianapolis. Meanwhile, Jared Hughes is set to start his rehab on Tuesday for Indianapolis, the team also announced.
Kang enjoyed a very successful first season in the big leagues last year, as he posted an .816 OPS with a 4.0 WAR and finished third in the National League Rookie of the Year voting. He’s been recovering from a devastating leg injury that he suffered on a slide from former Chicago Cubs outfielder Chris Coghlan. Once Kang returns to the Pirates lineup, David Freese is expected to platoon at first base with John Jaso, following the DFA of Michael Morse.
Hughes struggled during Spring Training, and it was revealed that he sustained a lat muscle strain. The 30-year-old right-hander has continued to be one of the best groundball relievers in baseball, posting a 64% groundball rate in 2015.