It’s confirmed, the next stop for the 20 years CPBL veteran 張泰山 (Chang Tai-Shan) is going to be Australia! The 41-year-old slugger along with his family attended the signing ceremony with the Adelaide Bite for the upcoming ABL season which go from November to February 2018.
— Adelaide Bite (@AdelaideBite) September 13, 2017
This is my way to love baseball as a player
“It’s not my first time in Australia. During my time playing for the national team we spent about 2 months in Gold Coast, Australia. Also, when I was in junior high school, our team went to Melbourne for an international tournament.”
“I am not trying to prove anything, this is the Tai-Shan way of loving baseball. As a player, I want to go different countries and experience the different baseball cultures.” Said Chang Tai-Shan at the press conference.
“300 career home run (Currently 289) was my dream. It was my achievement in CPBL, so let’s let it stay in CPBL” Said Chang when asked about the possibility of hitting #300 HR while in the ABL.
Chang Tai-Shan: All you need to know
Chang started his career back in 1996 as a 19-year-old playing for the Wei-Chuan Dragons and later on for the Sinon Bulls and the Uni-Lions. During his 20 years of career, Chang had won numerous CPBL awards at the same time setting several batting records which we’ll list it below.
— CPBL STATS (@GOCPBL) August 28, 2017
Chang Tai-Shang CPBL career highlights and awards
- 7x Taiwan Series
- 19x CPBL All-Star
- 2003 CPBL MVP
- 1996 CPBL Rookie of the Year
- 3x CPBL Home Run Award
- 4x CPBL RBI Award
- 2x CPBL Hits Award
- 3x CPBL Gold Glove
- 9x CPBL Best 10 Award
- CPBL record for most game played (1863)
- CPBL record for most at-bat (6957)
- CPBL record for most home run (289)
- CPBL record for most hits (2134)
- CPBL record for most double (377)
- CPBL record for most RBI (1338)
- CPBL record for most run scored (1075)
CPBL career stats
The final year in CPBL (2015)
At the age of 38, with declining stats and the rise of several young power hitter within the organisation. Chang starting to spent significant amount of time in the minor league between 2014 and 2015 season. There’s also rumour that Chang does not get along well with the GM and the manager, but that’s another story for another time.
After the 2015 season, the Uni-Lions offered Chang a coaching contract but was turned down by Chang. Eventually he was released by the Lions and cleared the waiver.
Without saying good-bye, without a proper retiring ceremony and just 11 home runs short from his career 300th home runs. The Prince of Jungle Chang Tai-Shan left CPBL for good.
Life after CPBL (2016 & 2017)
Determined to extend his professional career. Chang signed a contract with the Indigo Socks of the Shikoku Island League in Japan.
“I want to widen my baseball vision, at the same time I want to experience the different baseball environment and culture” Said Chang at the Indigo Socks signing ceremony.
— マトゥーン☆ は労働に勤しみます (@mathunn) December 13, 2016
In 2017, Chang turned down the coaching role by the Indigo Socks and returned to Taiwan. Chang was invited to be on the national team coaching program and was sent to the MLB development centre for coaching training. Shortly after that, he took on the role of guest hitting coach for the Taiwanese U18 national team.
— 阿英 (@aying108) September 2, 2017
With this ABL season very likely to be Chang’s last in his professional career as a player, fans in Taiwan will be watching closely via online stream and hopefully get to witness the aging veteran hit one over the wall once again.