The Baseball Australia have officially submitted the proposal to join Taiwan’s CPBL today. The goal is to have an Australian team to compete in the CPBL’s minor league by the 2019 season and reach the CPBL major league by 2021.
Cam Vale, the CEO of Baseball Australia and the Australian Baseball League along with the CPBL commissioner 吳志揚 (Wu Chih-Yang) held a press conference in Taipei City to discuss the potential expansion plan and answered the questions from the media.
“We have been in discussion with the CPBL in the past 12 months as part of our planning process,” said Cam Vale. “We still have a long way to go, but it is very exciting we submitted our proposal today”.
According to the CPBL commissioner, now the league have received the proposal from Baseball Australia, the next step is to present this to the CPBL team owners in the next general assembly.
“We hope to see an Australian team to enter the CPBL minor league by 2019, which is also the 30th CPBL season,” said Wu Chih-Yang.
Press Conference Quick Recap
Due to proposal contents being confidential, a lot of details such as the budgets were not properly discussed. But here is our recap of the press conference.
- The Australian/ ABL team is likely to spend the first two season in the CPBL minor league, with the goal of eventually graduating to the CPBL major league.
- Players source will be the ABL players and the Australian players from the United States baseball system.
- Over the next coming months, Baseball Australia will start investigating the suitable city as the base of the operation in Taiwan.
- Although Baseball Australia’s proposal is a bit different from the CPBL current expansion term, Baseball Australia will work hard and do their best to support the existing expansion term. (See CPBL expansion term here)
- According to the CPBL commissioner, the proposal today is purely on joining the CPBL farm league at this stage.
- Currently, there is no timeline as for when the Australian team will be promoted to the CPBL major league. The CPBL has no plan to keep the Australian team in the minor league forever.
- The proposal will be under review by the CPBL team owners at the next general assembly.
Reactions from Other CPBL Teams
The general reactions from most teams are mostly positive about the potential expansions, but they all mentioned they would have to review the proposal before making the final decision.
Chinatrust Brothers General Manager:
“We are not against the idea, but we will have to review the proposal first before making the decision collectively as a group among other team owners.”
Chinatrust Brothers Manager:
“Look forward seeing a new team in the CPBL minor league. Hopefully, the number of minor league games will increase too.”
Uni-Lions General Manager:
“How to operate the team in long-term is what we care about, if the Australian is willing to spend two seasons in the minor league, then we do want to see them in the CPBL major league eventually.”
“Four teams is not enough. A six-team league is more suitable for Taiwan. Anything is possible, but the league will need to set up the expansions rules properly first.”
Fubon Guardians General Manager:
“We are unable to comment on this without seeing the proposal, but we want to see is a team that can operate in Taiwan for long-term. It will create a healthy competition environment and further growing our sports industry.”
- We interviewed Cam Vale about this CPBL-Baseball Australia expansion back in February this year.