Last night, it was announced that Jung-Ho Kang finished third in National League Rookie of the Year balloting, behind Kris Bryant and Matt Duffy. It had previously been announced that Kang, Bryant and Duffy were the three finalists.
Bryant received all 30 first-place votes. Kang got four votes for second and 16 for third. Here's the full voting breakdown. I don't like the practice of ripping writers for their individual ballots, and I don't think writers are obligated to give votes to hometown players, but I do wonder what Gene Collier of the Post-Gazette was thinking putting Justin Bour, who isn't even assured of everyday play next year, ahead of Kang (and Duffy).
But oh well. Third place was probably was Kang deserved, and the overall ranking of Bryant, Duffy and Kang was probably right overall, although I also couldn't argue with finding a way to include Noah Syndergaard.
Kang's season ended early, and we've had plenty of time to reflect on it -- see here and here, for example. But let's give him one last salute. He took a leap of faith and moved from comfortable environs to what surely were radically unfamiliar and difficult ones, and he thrived, paving the way for other players from the KBO to do what he did. If there was a case for Kang to be Rookie of the Year, it was that not only did he play well, but he played well under difficult circumstances. And, of course, he did something historically important. His first season was a terrific one. Here's to many more.