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Bad week for Taiwanese baseball stars in U.S.

The past week was a difficult time for three famous Taiwanese baseball players playing in the United States Major League Baseball. They are New York Yankees starting pitcher Wang Chien-ming (王建民), Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Hu Chin-lung and former Royals reliever Tsao Chin-hui.
The series of bad news began last Wednesday when Kansas Royals' Triple A team Omaha Royals announced that they were releasing Tsao because of his chronic arm injury.
The announcement was a major blow to Tsao and local fans as the right handed pitcher was the first Taiwanese pitcher and the second player after former Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder, Chen Chin-Feng, to make it to the big league.
He was also the first player from Taiwan to make a hit in MLB, which is an even more special record considering his position as a pitcher.
Only two days after the sad news that broke local fans' hearts, Wang, who used to be dubbed "Taiwan Glory," again failed to take a win, this time against the Toronto Blue Jays.
Since May 2, the Taiwanese baseball icon has gone six straight starts without a win, the longest such streak of his career, after starting the year 6-0.
Only four days later, another stroke of bad news, announced by the Dodgers, who said on Monday that they had optioned rookie shortstop Hu to Triple-A Las Vegas.
Though Hu had done well defensively as a shortstop, his terrible batting performance forced the L.A. ballclub to make the call.
He was batting with a poor average 0.159, a 0.224 on-base percentage and 0.206 slugging percentage. He suddenly became the everyday shortstop due to Rafael Furcal's back injury, and played well defensively, but was overmatched at the plate.
The release of Tsao and the downgrading of Hu, however, was not all bad news for Taiwan, as the move might mean it's possible for the local national squad to recruit them for the games in the Beijing Summer Olympics.
The MLB had forbidden players listed on its teams' 25-man roster to compete in the Olympics this August.
Since now Tsao and Hu have been removed from the rosters, the national squad will very likely try to recruit them for the summer games.


Updated : 2021-05-16 18:27 GMT+08:00