Pirates Sign Chen Po-Yu for $1.25 M
On October 8, the Pittsburgh Pirates announced the signing of 19-year-old Taiwanese right-hander 陳柏毓 (Chen Po-Yu) as an international free agent. The signing bonus is reportedly 1.25 million USD, making him one of the Pirates’ highest-paid international amateur signees.
“Po-Yu Chen is an exciting young pitching prospect who has been a prominent part of the Taiwanese national program and in International competition,” Pirates general manager Ben Cherington said in a statement. “He has good size, moves well on the mound, and has a quality pitch mix with the ability to keep getting better.”
[U-18 Baseball World Cup] Team Taiwan's 陳柏毓 (Chen Po-Yu) tossed 6 strong innings with 7K against Korea (6IP, 1ER, 4H, 7K, 1BB). #TWHSBaseball pic.twitter.com/BKysaAif7a
— CPBL STATS (@GOCPBL) September 5, 2019
Chen Po-Yu stands 187 cm (6’2), weighs 90 kg (198 lbs) and has been in the spotlight since high school. Whenever he pitched, he would attract plenty of MLB, NPB and CPBL scouts.
In terms of pitching repertoire, Chen’s fastball sat between 142-148 kph and maxed out at 151 kph (93.8 mph) on multiple occasions. Off-speed pitches-wise, he throws a changeup, curve and a slider.
In 2019, Chen Po-Yu represented Taiwan in the WBSC Baseball World Cup. During that tournament, he pitched a total of 14 innings with a 1.29 ERA against Panama, Korea and the USA.
[Taiwan U-18] 陳柏毓 (Chen Po-Yu) pitched against Team USA in a warm up game. Chen throws a 151kph fastball, 133kph changeup, 117kph curveball. The 17-year-old RHP is highly likely to sign with an MLB organisation when he graduate from high school next year. #TWHSBaseball pic.twitter.com/VExn8qJcR1
— CPBL STATS (@GOCPBL) August 27, 2019
I wonder if the Uni-Lions will be able to bring back Teddy Stankie in 2021. He’s only 26 this year, and is pitching well through eight CPBL starts. My guess is that the Uni-Lions have a fairly good shot at bringing him back, because I am doubtful there will be any minor league baseball in the U.S. before June or July 2021. I think it will take at least that long to develop an effective vaccine and get it widely enough distributed that we could have people attending minor league games by the thousands.
If Teddy wants to go that route, he’s young enough and the right talent level that after one or two strong full seasons in the CPBL, he could move up to bigger pay days in the KBO or NPB. It would probably depend on whether CPBL teams continue to spend on foreign pitchers the way they did last season. If so, he’d have a chance to become the next Mike Loree.
I think the Uni-Lions are very likely to bring back Teddy Stankiewicz and Tim Melville for next year. As for Brock Dykxhoorn, maybe as a 4th backup, as he starting to show that 80-pitch stamina concerns from the KBO last year, but he is still young, I think it is worth give him another shot next year.
I believe Stankiewicz is going to play winter ball in LIDOM next. If the Uni-Lions are planning to bring Stankiewicz back, I would suggest them actually paying Stankiewicz during the offseason and ask him not to play winter ball in DR, so he can get a proper rest for 2021 CPBL season.
For Monkeys, probably worth to bring back Ryan Carpenter (rumour his monthly salary is 40,000 USD). Maybe it even worth for them to approach Ryan Bollinger and check his condition.
For Brothers and Guardians, pretty much bring back their existing foreign players. But there is a slight concern about Arturo Reyes, I think he hurt his elbow.
I’ve been very impressed with how well both Jose De Paula and Esmil Rogers have pitched this year. Although I thought their signings by CPBL teams made sense, they’ve pitched better than I expected, particularly in light of the fact that neither is young anymore.
I would expect both to pitch in the Dominican Republic this winter if baseball is played there this winter. Both have pitched for years in the Dominican Winter League, where I have to assume they are big stars.