Gone! Chiang Chih-Hsien Blasts League-leading 10th Homer

Chinatrust Brothers’ 蔣智賢(Chiang Chih-Hsien)may truly be unstoppable as he cracks yet another homer, the league-leading 10th home run, as Brothers cruised to a 9-2 victory over the Uni-Lions on Saturday night at Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium.

Video of Chiang and his monster out of stadium solo homer

The man who’s hotter than fire

Chiang Chih-Hsien is on fire. The Chinatrust Brothers slugger is mashing baseballs at a record pace.  Up until today, Chiang is leading all batter’s stats leader boards including batting average (0.432), Hits (41), HR (10), RBI (32) and OPS+ (220).  Though the 2016 season MVP 王柏融 (Wang Po-Jung) is not far behind, Chiang still leads the youngster with overall performance.

Chiang, Chiang, Chiang, Chiang. The CPBL 2017 individual leader board. Photo credit: (CPBL website)

The gifted batter and his MiLB journey

蔣智賢 (Chiang Chih-Hsien) is widely regarded as “The Gifted Batter” since high school, he was signed by the Boston Red Sox as an international free agent with the signing bonus 376K USD.  He started his rookie year in 2006 and showed his batting talents as he went through the minor league system (A to AAA)

AAA <1 40 168 159 0.245 0.265 0.321 0.586
AA 5 499 2012 1856 0.265 0.312 0.433 0.745
A+ 3 202 808 741 0.274 0.325 0.424 0.749
Total 9 880 3541 3269 0.267 0.313 0.421 0.734

Health problem

Chiang’s biggest challenge was not about transition into the western culture nor about his batting capability.  It is his health condition that troubled him throughout his professional career.  Chiang has Type I diabetes which required insulin shot during the games.  He had to control his physical status and diet in order to complete the whole season.

Being in a foreign country chasing the big league dream and moving back and forth for hundreds of miles on home-away games has limited Chiang to get decent care and it is tiring physically and mentally.  After his 9th seasons in the minor league Chiang decided to return to Taiwan and was drafted by Chinatrust Brothers in the 1st round (#3 overall)

Becoming the top batter in CPBL

After Chiang’s return, he spent the rest of the 2015 season adjusting to the league and the playstyle.  With a full spring training in 2016 and fully adjusted to CPBL he has proven himself to be the league’s best batter.  If weren’t for his time being on the disabled list, he had a really good chance of taking home the 2016 CPBL MVP.

2017 24 102 95 0.432 0.471 0.821 1.292
2016 88 396 351 0.402 0.455 0.738 1.193
2015 30 118 111 0.306 0.331 0.441 0.772
Total 142 616 557 0.388 0.433 0.693 1.126

2017 Season so far

25 games into the 2017 season.  Both the team standings and the individual leaderboards are full of surprises.  Chiang has definitely given us the snapshot on how far he might go in 2017 season.  Let’s continue to observe and see whether Chiang can sustain his performance throughout the 2017 season.

(Video of Chiang Chih-Hsien theme song and chant)


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