Chu Li-Jen Using His Taiwanese Aboriginal Name

On December 5, the Cleveland Indians’ prospect 朱立人 (Chu Li-Jen) has changed his name back to his Taiwanese aboriginal name “Giljegiljaw Kungkuan”. The 25-year-old Taiwanese catcher is from the Paiwan tribe, one of the 16 major indigenous groups in Taiwan.

Although Chu / Giljegiljaw Kungkuan is not the first Taiwanese aboriginal baseball player to change his name back to his tribe name, he will be the first player to do so in the MLB system.

“For me, using my tribe name, it brings a sense of belonging,” said Giljegiljaw Kungkuan. “If one day, I get to play in the MLB, I can introduce the world about the Paiwan people and my heritage.”

Pronunciation Guide: Giljegiljaw Kungkuan (Gi-li Gi-lao Gong-Kuan).

In 2012, the Cleveland Indians signed Chu Li-Jen / Giljegiljaw Kungkuan as an international free agent. Over the years, he worked his way up within the Indians’ system and was briefly promoted to Triple-A in 2018.

During the 2018 off-season, Chu participated in the Arizona Fall League and received an invite to the spring training. In 2019, he spent his first full season in the Double-A.

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