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Jung Ho Kang is knocking on the door

St Louis Cardinals v Pittsburgh Pirates

PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 10: Jung Ho Kang #27 of the Pittsburgh Pirates fields a ground ball in the second inning during the game against the St. Louis Cardinals at PNC Park on June 10, 2016 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)

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Jung Ho Kang was just put into real minor league games as he tries to work his way back to the Pirates. Seems like he’s well on his way to that callup too.

He’s played three games thus far. He went 0-for-3 with a pair of strikeouts in his first game, but he went 2-for-4 with a homer and four RBI on in his second game on Saturday and 4-for-5 with a homer and three RBI in his third game on Monday. He’s also drawn three walks.

While it was uncertain until just a couple of months ago whether Kang would ever play baseball in the United States again, it seems like he’s going to be on the Pirates’ active roster within the next week or two.

Kang, who missed all of last season following his third DUI conviction in South Korea, thus preventing him from getting a work visa for the United States, hit .255/.354/.513 with 21 homers in 103 games as the Pirates’ third baseman in 2016. Kang is owed a pro-rated $3 million for 2018 once he is activated. The Pirates have a $5.5 million team option on him for 2019.

Follow @craigcalcaterra