Showing posts with label Sports. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sports. Show all posts

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Pittsburgh Pirates sign Taiwanese pitching prospect Po-Yu Chen (陳柏毓).

The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed 19-year-old pitcher Po-Yu Chen (陳柏毓) out of Taoyuan, Taiwan.
The Pirates set their sights on Chen, viewing him as equivalent to a second-round-type talent in the MLB Draft, but needed to obtain more international bonus pool space to sign him. So on Sept. 20, the last day to make such trades, they sent left-hander Domingo Robles to the Cardinals and right-hander Conner Loeprich to the Orioles, acquiring bonus pool slots in each deal.

[General Manager] Cherington said the Pirates have been scouting Chen for three years, writing up more than 25 reports on him.

“In particular, our scout in Taiwan, Fu Chun Chiang, did a great job getting to know Po-Yu and his family and putting us in a position to sign him,” Cherington said. “I enjoyed meeting Po-Yu this week in Pittsburgh, and we look forward to working with him in the years to come.
Chen received a $1.25 million signing bonus, according to the team's beat writer. The Pirates signed one other Taiwanese player in 2019-2020: 17-year old Cheng Tsung-Che (鄭宗哲).

Thursday, October 1, 2020

Throwback Thursday: Chan-ho Park sets record for most wins in Major League Baseball by an Asian pitcher while member of the Pirates.


via Yonhap News.

In August 4, 2010 the last-place Pittsburgh Pirates claimed 37-year-old pitcher Chan-ho Park (박찬호) off waivers, making him the first Korean player in Pittsburgh Pirates history. The Pirates have had Korean players in their system dating back to the late-1990s, and had relief pitcher Byung-hyun Kim in spring training in 2008, but did not have a Korean player on the Major League roster until Park (and would not have another one until, or after, Jung-ho Kang). Park would appear in 26 games for Pittsburgh that year and, on October 1, set the record for most Major League Baseball wins by an Asian pitcher. He would pitch one year in Japan and another year in Korea after leaving Pittsburgh.

Thursday, April 23, 2020

Profile on Japanese-American Pirates prospect Daniel Ross.



Millersville University's The Snapper profiles pitcher Daniel Ross, a senior for the Marauders and a 39th-round draft choice of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2019.
Ross was excited to be here in Pennsylvania around his family, but it was also important that coach Jon Shehan sold him on the program. The toughest adjustment, however, was that he was from Japan and there were some major language barriers.

“There was a lot of language barriers and cultural barriers that didn’t click in immediately, but the language barrier kept me away from knowing people more and it was harder to understand people more,” Ross said.

Ross was concerned that the fact that he was still learning English might be a challenge or make it harder to get along with his teammates. But his language barrier wasn’t just holding him back off the field, it created on the field challenges as well. There are things about baseball that are universal, but Ross says in Japan players think differently.

“It’s a little bit different like how people think, baseball was a little differently. I don’t have any quick examples, but everything didn’t make sense or click for me right away,” Ross says.

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Pirates again without an Asian player after Wang becomes free agent.



In not-so-news from earlier this month, the Pirates granted Taiwanese pitcher Wei-chung Wang (王維中) free agency on November 4, leaving them again without an Asian player on their roster. Wang joined the team on August 31 as the first Taiwanese player in Pittsburgh Pirates history and made five appearances toward the end of the season. He was the sixth Asian player to appear in a regular-season game for Pittsburgh, following Jung-ho Kang, Akinori Iwamura, Hisanori Takahashi, Chan-ho Park, and Masumi Kuwata.

The Pirates still have a number of Asian players in their system, including Taiwanese infield prospect Cheng Tsung-Che (鄭宗哲) and Korean shortstop Ji-hwan Bae, who is currently ranked the #8 prospect in the team's system.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Wei-chung Wang (王維中) becomes first Taiwanese player in Pittsburgh Pirates history.



Wei-chung Wang (王維中), claimed from the Oakland Athletics on August 31, became the first Taiwanese player in Pittsburgh Pirates history by pitching in---and winning---last night's game. Wang was originally signed by Pittsburgh in 2011 but was claimed by Milwaukee in the 2014 Rule 5 draft.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Pittsburgh Pirates claim Taiwanese pitcher Wei-Chung Wang (王維中), place him on Major League roster.



The Pittsburgh Pirates claimed Taiwanese pitcher Wei-Chung Wang off waivers from Oakland and have placed him on the 40-man roster. Wang was originally in the Pirates system before being claimed by Milwaukee in the Rule Five draft prior to the 2014 season. If he plays for the Major League team he will be the first Taiwanese player in Pittsburgh Pirates history.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Back when Hyomin came to Pittsburgh.


via 뉴스엔.

A flashback to when T-ara's Hyomin was in Pittsburgh to throw out the first pitch at PNC Park on September 13, 2015. Jung-ho Kang, her catcher for the pitch, was officially released from the Pirates this week, ending the city's brief flirtation with Korean celebrity.


via 일간스포츠.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

킹캉.



Teacher trainees from Korea National University of Education (한국교원대학교) in Cheongju attended the July 23 Pittsburgh Pirates game and met infielder Jung-ho Kang during warm-ups. The cohort of 43 teachers attending a month-long training program at the University of Pittsburgh's English Language Institute this summer.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Pittsburgh Pirates sign 17-year-old Taiwanese shortstop Cheng Tsung-Che / Zheng Zong-Zhe (鄭宗哲)



On July 9 the Pittsburgh Pirates signed 17-year-old Taiwanese shortstop Cheng Tsung-Che (鄭宗哲). The contract is reported to be around US $300,000. He is the 10th Taiwanese player to sign with Pittsburgh, and the first since 2014. (Initial reports were using a different Romanization system, which provided an alternate English spelling of his name.)

Host families needed for 45 visiting Japanese Pony-league baseball players in August.



The Japan-America Society of Pennsylvania shares news of a group of visiting Pony-league baseball players from Japan and the need for host families in Pittsburgh during their August 5 - 10 stay. Those interested should contact the organizers at the bottom of the flyer.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Reports say Pittsburgh Pirates are close to signing Zheng Zong-Zhe (鄭宗哲), a 17-year-old Taiwanese shortstop.


Via Liberty Times.

Multiple sources are reporting the Pittsburgh Pirates are close to signing Zheng Zong-Zhe (鄭宗哲), a 17-year-old Taiwanese shortstop.
The Pittsburgh Pirates are reportedly close to signing 17-year-old 鄭宗哲 (Zheng Zong-Zhe), a shortstop from Pu-Men high school. According to Liberty Sports, the deal said to be at least $300,000 USD.

With the 2019 CPBL Draft just around the corner, Zheng who is considered to be one of the top high school shortstop talents did not enter the draft. As per Liberty Sports, Zheng has shown great interest to go overseas, which make this deal extremely likely to happen.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Jung-ho Kang moves to second on list of home runs by Koreans in the Major Leagues.


Via AP / 해럴드경제.

With his fifth home run of the season on June 9, Pirates infielder Jung-ho Kang is now second on the list of Korean home run hitters in the Major Leagues with 41. He passed Hee-Seop Choi, who played from 2002 to 2005 and who is from the same high school as Kang.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Host families needed for 45 visiting Japanese Pony-league baseball players in August.



The Japan-America Society of Pennsylvania shares news of a group of visiting Pony-league baseball players from Japan and the need for host families in Pittsburgh during their August 5 - 10 stay. Those interested should contact the organizers at the bottom of the flyer.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Bae, Kang, Choi, samgyupsal.



Pittsburgh Pirates prospect Bae Ji-hwan (with tongs) was doing some grilling at spring training the other day with infielder Jung-ho Kang (center) and Ji-man Choi of the Tampa Bay Rays (left).

Sunday, March 3, 2019

21 years of Korean Pirates.


Pitching prospect Byung-il Kim, (김병일) via 중앙일보.

Long before the Pittsburgh Pirates first started signing Asian prospects like Jung-ho Kang, Ji-hwan Bae, and Jin-de Jhang a few years ago, there have been some interesting intersections between the Pirates and Asian baseball. In 1965, the Pirates were set to tour Japan but the trip was cancelled that June, ostensibly due to the Pirates' "inferior drawing power" but in reality due to stalled contract negotiations with a Japanese baseball player. In 1975, the Pirates played, and lost to, the reigning Central League champion out of Nagoya, the Chunichi Dragons, who joined Pittsburgh in spring training that year. And, in the 1990s, the Pirates had a working agreement with one of the top pro teams in South Korea.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

"Ah so!" "Banzai." Pittsburgh Pirates and Chunichi Dragons.


Pirates manager Danny Murtaugh and Chunichi Dragons manager Wally Yonamine, 1975.

In 1975, the Chunichi Dragons spent spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates in Bradenton, Florida. The Dragons were the reigning Central League champions, and were managed by Japanese-American---and Japanese Baseball Hall of Famer---Wally Yonamine. A book on Yonamine, Wally Yonamine: The Man Who Changed Japanese Baseball, says the visit was a reward for his leading the team to the Central League championship.
For winning the pennant, Chunichi's board of directors gave the team two rewards. The first was a new clubhouse.
. . .
The second was a trip to Florida for spring training. Yonamine made arrangements with Joe Brown, Pittsburgh's general manager, for the Dragons to train with the Pirates. The Dragons arrived in March, already in shape from their February camp at Hamamatsu, and played exhibition games against the Pirates and nearby Major League teams. Though everybody knew the American teams were not yet in top form, Chunichi did well, taking two of three games against Pittsburgh and beating the Chicago White Sox 1-0.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Black and gold gloves for infielder Bae Ji-hwan.



Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop prospect Bae Ji-hwan (배지환) unveiled some new gloves on Instagram the other day. Bae is a 19-year-old prospect from Daegu, South Korea, who signed with Pittsburgh in March. He is currently in Florida preparing to attend spring training, though he is likely to peak at single-A this season.

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Former Pirates infielder Akinori Iwamura's sushi place.



Former baseball player Akinori Iwamura is a co-owner of Sushi Emon, (すしえもん), a small chain of conveyor-belt sushi places on his home island of Shikoku. The photograph above appears outside a location in a mall in Kagawa prefecture.

The T and A in the restaurant's logo refer to the Iwamura brothers, Takashi and Akinori. Akinori Iwamura was the first Japanese position player in Pittsburgh Pirates history---and to date the only Japanese position player in Pittsburgh Pirates history---playing 54 games for the team in 2010. Two other Japanese players, both pitchers, have appeared in games with the Pirates: Masumi Kuwata in 2007 and Hisanori Takahashi for nine games in 2012.

Friday, November 9, 2018

Taiwanese catcher Jin-de Jhang (張進德) leaves Pirates organization.


via LineToday.

Taiwanese catcher Jin-de Jhang (張進德) has left the Pittsburgh Pirates organization via free agency, choosing to sign with the San Francisco Giants. Jhang signed with Pittsburgh in 2011 and made it as far as AAA Indianapolis, but was stuck behind several other players on the organization's depth chart. In 2013 the Post-Gazette wrote he was part of a "scouting revolution" for the Pirates.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Japanese-language yoga class in Shadyside, Saturdays from November 3.



St. Andrew Lutheran Church in Shadyside (map) will host Japanese-language yoga sessions on Saturdays, from November 3. The cost is $10 per session, and though reservations are not required they are recommended as space is limited.