Baseball vs. FIU

Junior infielder Josh Jung runs towards second base during the game against Florida International University at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, May 7, 2019, at Dan Law Field. The Red Raiders defeated the Panthers, 9-6.

Texas Tech is a place where athletes go on to get recognized on a national, if not world-wide, scale. There have been many student-athletes that have made their name known at Tech and have gone on to make their name known even further. There is Patrick Mahomes, Wes Welker, Danny Amendola, Jarrett Culver, and next up is soon to be Major League Baseball player Josh Jung.

Josh Jung grew up in San Antonio and was undrafted out of high school. Being undrafted while still having the talent to play at the next level ultimately led Jung to the decision to play ball at Tech. 

During Jung’s freshman season, he immediately made a major impact for the Red Raiders. Jung started all 62 games at third base while also having an above .300 batting average, per Tech Athletics. He also led the team with 24 multi-hit games and a team-high 36 walks.

 After an impressive freshman season, Jung garnered an assortment of accolades including Big 12 Freshman of the Year, All-Big 12 Second Team, unanimous All-Big 12 Freshman Team and Baseball America First Team Freshman All-American. 

Despite a riveting freshman season, he would not stop there. In his sophomore season, Jung would become a bigger threat both offensively and defensively while going on to be named to the All-Big 12 First Team and the USA Collegiate National Team.

Entering his junior season, Jung was expected to be one of the top players in the Big 12 and exceeded that expectation by being recognized as one of the top players in the nation, according to ESPN. He was named a nationwide All-American and was expected to be taken in the 2019 MLB draft.

A successful college career, a trophy room that stretched from All-Big 12 to All-American and the tag of being one of the most accomplished Tech baseball players ever would ultimately convince the Texas Rangers to draft Jung with the 8th pick in the 2019 MLB Draft.

Post draft, Jung signed a $4.4 million deal with the Rangers and achieved the ranks of Class A in his professional debut, per MLB.com.

In his time with the Ranger’s farm system, Jung has been recognized as an all-around hitter who excels in putting the ball in play rather than focusing on hitting dingers every at-bat. With that being said, he still has the potential to hit a good number of homeruns while posting a “contact hitters batting average” if he were to make it to the show. 

This facet of his game is one thing that is very attractive and could go on to make him an extremely successful player and threat for the Rangers’ organization. Jung’s hitting prowess is not the only thing that makes him stand out amongst other prospects within MLB; he has always been a great defenseman with a strong arm and good instincts. 

Throughout his college and blossoming pro career, Jung has been tested at short-stop and most notably, third base. After several outings where he got the nod to start at short-stop, he has shown that while he has enough athleticism and baseball IQ to position one of the hardest and most demanding spots in baseball, his speed is absent and could not be up-to-par with the pro level. 

Jung has a better chance of reaching the show by sticking to what he does best, manning the third base position and showing off his arm strength and decision making.

After a short time in minor league ball, Jung has made his name very well known within the Texas Rangers’ organization and is now the No. 1 prospect amongst many other talented farm system players.

Currently, the third base position is occupied by eleven-year veteran, Todd Frazier. Ahead of the 2020 season, the Rangers and Frazier agreed to a one-year contract deal worth $5 million. At the end of the season, could we potentially see Josh Jung being called up to the show and taking over the third-base position for the Rangers? I believe the answer could be yes. Jung has proven that he has what it takes to play at the ultimate level through his success in college and in the minor league. 

There is also the question of whether or not we could see Jung being called up this season, which is also a high possibility as the Rangers have started the season at 11-17 and could look to a player like Josh Jung to try and give them a little push.

No matter when Jung will be called up, he has full capabilities to play with the big boys and has proven it numerous times. 

I fully expect him to make his name known with his batting skills, defensive skills and winner’s mentality. I look forward to another Red Raider making his name known throughout professional sports. 

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