TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan's Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL) is the only league in the world playing, so the Taoyuan government said on Wednesday (April 22) it would stump up NT$2 million (US$66,500) for English-language broadcasts until the end of the season.
The CPBL started giving trial English commentaries after the baseball season started April 11. Games are played behind closed doors and broadcast live on Eleven Sports Network and Twitter, for the first time since the league began in 1989.
Due to the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic, most sports have shut up shop. This includes baseball, which is not being played professionally anywhere else in the world but Taiwan.
The English broadcast is by Richard Wang (王雲慶) and fellow commentator Wayne McNeil. They have done five English-language broadcasts, as of April 22, and the games mainly take place at Taoyuan International Baseball Stadium.
Nearly 5 million views have been recorded for the five games on Eleven Sports Taiwan. The strong viewing figures have prompted the operator to extend the service for the remaining games of the season.
After talking to the home team Rakuten Monkeys and Eleven Sports, Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) announced the city would commit NT$2 million to sponsor English-language broadcasts, starting May 1. He said this will enable overseas sports fans to enjoy Taiwan baseball games and also promote the city of Taoyuan.