Jung Ho Kang has lost his appeal for his DUI sentence in Korea, according to Jeeho Yoo on Twitter. The details are as follows:

As Yoo reports, Kang’s original sentence of eight months, suspended two years, was upheld. That means Kang won’t do any jail time on the sentence if he doesn’t have any incidents for two years. But the bigger issue here is that Kang’s visa has been rejected. He was hoping that getting an appeal and overturning the sentence would help that, but the court ruled that the DUI sentence and the visa ruling weren’t connected.

I was already operating under the idea that the Pirates would be without Jung Ho Kang for the entire 2017 season. At this point, you’d have to wonder if he’ll ever be on the team again. I’ve got an upcoming column about the future of the Pirates, and before this news I was even considering that Kang’s potential to re-join the team in 2018 and 2019 was up in the air. This news drives that home a bit more.

If Kang has already been denied a visa, then I’m not sure what he can do to get that ruling reversed. He tried to appeal his DUI sentence, and that didn’t work. I’m no legal expert, but it doesn’t seem like he’s got a path to getting his visa, which is key to allowing him to enter the US to play for the Pirates.

We’ll have more updates on Kang as they are made available.

UPDATE 3:35 PM: Pirates president Frank Coonelly issued the following statement on today’s news:

“We are aware of the ruling this morning in Jung Ho’s legal proceedings in South Korea, however, it is premature to comment on the impact, if any, it will have on his ability to secure permission to travel to the United States under a work visa. We will continue to work with Jung Ho and his representatives as he works through that process.”

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34 COMMENTS

  1. OK, here is Dave’s dumb questions of the day.

    Kang’s interpreter? From what I understand he is
    paid and employed by the Pirates? What is his
    status? Unemployed? When he works for Kang,
    is that only when Kang is “on the clock” or is it
    more like 24 hours a day?

    Would he only work during the playing season?

    When he was in the dugout, he seemed to
    be a real part of the team.
    Can we assume that he is a good guy and
    is not around when Kang gets in trouble?

  2. he was denied his appeal the same day toby keith
    said he would travel with trump to saudi arabia
    to sing evoactive, patriotic songs
    such as “i like girls who drink beer ” and “drunk americans”
    awe inspiring god and country.

  3. I feel like I am missing something. The ruling was the VISA and the DUI have no connection. We need to wait until May 25th (then a few weeks later I am sure) to see if his VISA is truly denied. This is on the United States side of things, chances are still there that he can acquire a VISA. I think someone just needed a little “greasing”. I am interested to see what happens after May 25th.

  4. Marte better not leave the country. I haven’t heard of a ML player visa being denied for taking illegal drugs.

  5. The more important question here is do we lose this year on his contract? This year is going to be a wash, I would rather have another year at the end of his contract.

  6. I am not sure of the visa process, but it is getting to the point that Kang probably won’t be playing at all this season.

  7. It’s a sad outcome for both Kang and the Bucs, but at least the Pirates are another step closer to closing that chapter.

    What I’d really like to see is a continued effort to identify more talent in the KBO. Kang surely isn’t the only guy in that league with a good enough stick to warrant a look from MLB.

  8. The PBC doesn’t believe in windows. It sure looks like the window has closed though. Time to deconstruct and build thru the draft and with young players. Hopefully it wont be another 20 years before winning and making the Wild Card game.

  9. “At this point, you’d have to wonder if he’ll ever be on the team again. ”

    He won’t be allowed in the US for at least the next four years.

    Question: If I’m right, what happens to his contract/rights?

  10. I was going to ask how far away from Pittsburgh that Wood is
    but I guess I have to wait for Tim’s article tomorrow.

  11. Looking forward to the write up about the future of the Bucs.

    Now about that contract….
    Since Kang is suspended, can the 2 sides somehow reach agreement to void the contract to allow Kang to return to the KBO, both for this season and future years?

    • I wouldn’t void the contract but just allow him to play in KBO to keep skills sharp a la Marte in Bradenton working out.

      • They’d have to sell his contract to the KBO team. Idk if they could work out some kind of loan arrangement like they do in soccer.

  12. I think the quickest way to get Kang back on the team is if he marries a US citizen. I heard Chicago produces a lot of singles.

  13. I don’t mind the ruling, I just hope the third time is a charm for Kang to learn from his mistakes of drunk driving, whether he ever returns to the Pirates or not. Time to grow up and take responsibility for your actions.

  14. What is the reason a visa is being denied if it’s not about his legal problems in Korea.?

  15. Please….go interview a visa lawyer. From my internet searches, what I’ve read is that the Visa is automatically denied the first time if you have just about any incidents (even if you weren’t officially charged), then you appeal it with a lawyer and if it’s not serious, they approve the visa. Now what constitutes serious is beyond me, the examples I read were more about drug trafficking, murder, etc.

    • I would actually be interested to hear an expert’s input on the situation. It makes sense that when he applied and was denied he more than likely didn’t have legal representation. So your post makes a lot of sense.

    • I have been waiting for some reporter here or elsewhere to explore this issue. Lazy reporting (a comment more directed at msm than this web site).

  16. Time to look for replacement going forward. This was a blow that they just couldn’t overcome this year. Still no excuse for the job that NH, Hurdle, Kutch & company have done. I’ve been a major supporter of NH up until now, never been a fan of Hurdle, it’s time to clean house.

    • I don’t see this as a NH issue. He lost Kang, Marte, Taillon, now Gregory. We lost Freese and Frazier already for some time, without those things I would say this team is put together pretty well. His trade last year for melancon looks like a steal, the nova signing looks great, like I said not putting this on NH.

      • I totally agree with you. You cannot blame Huntington for not babysitting Kang and Marte. These are young men who are making a very nice salary and who should be accountable for their actions. The loss of Taillon to cancer is a kick in the gut. Take Zimmerman, Rendon and Strawsburg from the Nationals and what would their record be at this time.

        • I don’t think I have ever posted something like this,
          but for once, I think I give Huntington credit for
          realizing that Kang could be a problem and lock
          up Freese as insurance for a couple of years.

      • Didn’t do his homework on Kang, overreacted to Jhay having 3 months of unsustainable success, rolled the dice on keeping Kutch (snake eyes), Jaso 2 yr contract when they only needed 3 months, Hudson 2 yr 11 mill, overreacted to Diaz injury & gave injury prone slightly below avg Cervelli 3 yr extension, Hutchinson trade, not moving Bell & others to the positions they need to learn sooner in minors, nobody knows how to play D or run the bases. Worst one of all he keeps little league manager Hurdle.

    • What should NH have done differently? He had about 100m in payroll to work with. I don’t know what the Nationals were offering, but maybe coming off of Robles and making that trade was one thing. For as bad as Cutch is playing right now, they would be worse without Cutch.

      • Worse without Kutch, a .210, bad defensively no. 3 hitting player on a last place team. Would worse be worse.

        • Who would take his spot? It will be interesting to see what happens when Marte comes back. Assuming Cutch is still with the team and Frazier & Harrison continue to hit.

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