Baseball

Josh Jung Drafted Eighth Overall by Texas Rangers

Congrats!

Congrats to Josh Jung who was drafted 8th overall in the Major League Baseball Draft. Jung hit .340 this year with 11 home runs, slugging .608, and making it on base at a .478 clip while switching from third base in the first half of the season to shortstop the second half, all while battling a leg injury that hampered Jung for a short period of time (and basically playing through it).

The Texas Rangers have no identifiable player in the pipeline at third base and most teams don’t draft for need because the minor leagues are intended to be your depth, the thought is that because Jung has a fairly advanced plate approach despite the lack of power (right now) that one might expect at third base in the Majors, but a lot of experts predict that the power will follow.

One of the things that I didn’t have the chance to write about on Monday was the idea that Texas Tech head coach Tim Tadlock became pretty emotional on Sunday night when talking about Jung, who passed up the opportunity to play professional baseball coming out of high school to attend Texas Tech (emphasis mine):

Q. What’s it been like to coach Josh and what’s it like to — I know it’s a unique situation, but it’s potentially a first-round pick tomorrow.

COACH TIM TADLOCK: I tell you, it’s a lot of fun watching these guys each day. You know, they love to prepare. Josh loves to hit. Loves to play baseball. Loves to work at it, as does the rest of our team.

He’s a guy that, you know, coming out of high school, out of San Antonio, since we’re talking about the draft, probably turned down, you know, the fourth round and pretty much said, hey, no, I’m going to Texas Tech. I mean, at that point, what really probably hits me is, you know, they believed in us, and there’s not a lot of guys that have the guts in the fourth round, when their dream their whole life has been to play baseball for a living to, say, I’m going to school, but the one that is do are special. That’s what I would tell you.

Tadlock has been emotional about this team this year, it seems a bit more emotion than what the normally stoic Tadlock has been regarding his team and players. I think it’s great. It’s a guy that’s fully invested in the success of the players and the team and that’s a fun feeling to have.

Interestingly, the Rangers also drafted Davis Wendzel, the Baylor infielder who manned third base for the Bears who was the Big 12 Co-Player of the Year with Jung. Wendzel is said to be a better athlete and could move to shortstop, while Jung is viewed as a third baseman in the MLB.

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