Cardinals making moves in Taiwan?

by on January 20, 2010 · 3 comments

Picked up this tidbit from the blog Taiwan Baseball:

The St. Louis Cardinals are sending a scout (Matt Slater?) to Taiwan, marking the team’s initial presence on the island. Supposedly the scout is interested in CCU RHP Hao-Chun Chiu, Kao-Yuan HS left handed hitter Chi-Hung Hsu, and two kids from Nan-Ying HS.

There are currently six players in the Major Leagues that were born in Taiwan, including Chein-Ming Wang, who recently has drawn some interest from the Cardinals.

I tried my darnedest to dig up some information on these two youngsters, but needless to say, finding a wealth of news and links to teenage Taiwanese baseball players isn’t incredibly fruitful.

Nonetheless, here’s what little I did find out.

Hao-Chun Chiu

Chiu is a 19 year old right handed pitcher at Chung Cheng University in Chiayi County, Taiwan.

As a 5′-11″ 17 year old in 2008, Chiu was named to the All-Star Team of the Yu-Shan Cup after putting in a solid performance in a losing effort:

Hao-Chun Chiu (clocked consistently in the high 80′s – topping out at 89 mph) started for Taoyuan County and managed to tame Taipei County’s offense for the most part (7.1 IP, 5 H, 3 R) – unfortunately the defense behind Chiu committed 4 costly errors – leading to Taipei County’s 3 runs.

Chiu went on to pitch for Taiwan’s Junior National Team in the summer of 2008, with decidedly less success, based upon the box score I found for a game versus Canada.

Unfortunately, that’s where my search efforts ran out of results.

Chi-Hung Hsu

Hsu is a left-handed hitting first baseman at Kao-Yuan High School.

Everything (and that’s not much) I was able to dig up on Hsu was about a playoff game about a month ago in which he led his Kao-Yuan squad to a win in a semi-final game.

Kao-Yuan defeated Tung-Shih 7-1 in one semifinal on Friday. KY starter Sheng-Nan Chen threw a CG, allowing 1 unearned run on 1 hit over 9 IP (6 K’s, 2 BB’s) to pick up his 3rd win in the tourney. KY 1B Chi-Hung Hsu backed up Chen’s dominating performance with a 3-3, 2B, 2 BB’s, 4 RBI night.

Kao Yuan is apparently a powerhouse year in and year out – so the pedigree sounds promising.  (Yes, I’m reaching.)

Nan Ying High Schoolers

No specifics here, but I figure it’s worth noting that current Dodgers pitcher Hong-Chih Kuo is from Nan Ying High School in Tainan City, Taiwan.

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Obviously there’s a long way to go in finding out where this is all headed, particularly for these specific players, but I am glad that the Cardinals are investing effort around the globe.  It will be paramount to the team’s continued success that they explore all avenues to add “home-grown” talent.

Here’s hoping for continued in-roads for the scouting/player development department all around.

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Writing about the Cardinals and other loosely associated topics since 2008, I've grown tired of the April run-out only to disappoint Cardinal fans everywhere by mid-May. I do not believe in surrendering free outs.
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{ 3 comments }

BUD WISER January 21, 2010

CARDINALS LOST CREDIBILITY WITH THE MCGWIRE ADDITION!!

PH8 January 21, 2010

I’m not quite sure what your opinion of the McGwire hiring has to do with the Cards making scouting in-roads into Taiwan, but thanks for reading.

Jeff January 21, 2010

lulz

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