Yang Hyeon-jong rejoins Texas Rangers
The Texas Rangers have selected the contract of Korean pitcher Yang Hyeon-jong, calling him back up to the big leagues as the team struggles with a Covid-19 outbreak.
Yang, who joined the Rangers on a minor league contract this season, has spent the last 74 days with the minor league Round Rock Express. He was sent down to the minors in June after a series of disappointing outings saw his ERA jump up to 5.59.
This is the second time Yang has been called up this season.
After joining the Rangers for spring training, Yang spent most of April playing at the team's alternate training site while on the taxi squad ready to be called up to the majors.
That waiting paid off and on April 26 he was called up to the majors, becoming the 26th Korean-born pitcher to appear in the big leagues. He pitched four and one third innings and gave up five hits and two runs while striking out one for a 4.15 ERA against the Los Angeles Angels.
Yang made another appearance in relief on April 30, before the moment he had been waiting for came. On May 5, Yang was brought in as a spot starter, throwing eight strikeouts and giving up one run in three and one third innings.
Following that first outing, Yang went back into the bullpen for a game, and then returned as a starter for three straight games from May 19 to May 30. He pitched 11 and two third innings throughout those three games, giving up 10 earned runs for three losses.
He reappeared in the bullpen on June 11, giving up two earned runs in one and one third innings, before being sent down to Round Rock.
Yang's return to the big leagues comes amid a Covid-19 outbreak that has crippled the Rangers' 40-man squad. For Yang, it could be a shot at redemption and a chance to again prove that he deserves a more permanent spot on the roster.
BY JIM BULLEY [firstname.lastname@example.org]