Chinese or Taiwanese? Right when I think I know a word, they switch the language on me.

Nothing ceases to amaze me here in the Chinese Professional Baseball League. This past weekend in Pingtong we were playing Elephants in a close game. It was about the middle of the 4th inning when the Elephants manager took a visit to the mound to make a pitching change. The manager signaled down towards the bullpen for the lefty import, Tyler Lumsden. Tyler had only thrown two warm up pitches, and his teammates in the bullpen signaled he wasn’t ready. Since the manager made the signal already, Tyler was called into action. During his warmups, the coaches realized he wasn’t loose to throw and needed to buy a way to get him more warm up pitches. They then came up with a plan to randomly act like the 3rd baseman was hurt and needed to be stretched out. While all of these shenanigans are going on, Tyler seems to get about fifteen warm up pitches in. Here is the clip of the video. It starts at the 43 second mark.

We ended up winning Sunday 3-1. I came into the game in the 6th inning to throw in my first relief appearance of the year. We were down in the bullpen due to our blow out of a game the day before where we lost 18-2.

Prior to coming over here to Taiwan you hear many stories from former players about the gambling issues the league has had. There are stories online and in the news from prior seasons about players, politicians, and book keepers who all were involved. It is really sad to see how it can tarnish the league and the fan support. There used to be many more teams in the league, and I believe that the gambling has affected it because now there are only four teams. In just my couple of months here I have not noticed anything weird in which gambling would be involved. I think the league has done a great job in cleaning up the past issues. There are CPBL officials all over the stadium and in and around the locker room to monitor any suspicious activity. We are not allowed to use cell phones, computers, or any other electronics once we arrive to the stadium as well. This limits the communication lines for anyone trying to make any bets or give out information. The only thing that I find a little over the top is that we are not allowed to play cards in the locker room. So no Spades, Euchre, poker, or blackjack. They don’t want to associate any type of gambling, including cards I guess. Hopefully by cleaning up this issue the league can grow and expand to bring more teams back with the amount of stadiums the country has to offer.

Questions from the Blog

1. Do you speak any Mandarin Chinese? What words have you learned so far?

I have a cheat sheet on my phone for most of the usual/common sayings for me to get around town. It includes numbers, taxi instructions, and shopping for food tips.

2. Who, out of the import players, speaks Chinese the best in your team? Please rank the Chinese level of the foreign players according to your knowledge. (And including you!)

Steve Hammond speaks the best Chinese, Ken Ray is next, and I’m in last just because I’ve only been here a couple of months.

3. Do you speak any Taiwanese? Have you learned any course words?

I have learned only about ten Taiwanese words. Most of them are just common phrases or taxi instructions. (left, right, straight, stop)

4. Have you gained or lost weight after you’ve arrived in Taiwan and started playing? Will you keep gaining or losing weight?

I think I have gained some weight being over here so far. I think I put on some bad weight at first because I didn’t know where to go to eat, so I ended up at Mcdonalds or some other fast food joint. Luckily I have figure out some of the local food places and we have a really nice gym in our stadium that we get to use prior to games.

This week we are home in Taoyuan on Tuesday and Thursday against the Sinon Bulls and on back on the road in Kaoshiung versus the Lions on the weekend. Here are some pictures of the food around town that I didn’t have a chance to post in my “food” blog last week. Please continue to comment, leave questions, and share the blog with your friends. Thanks as always for the support and taking the time to read it.


  1. marcus 阿弟仔

    到高雄來你可以嘗試星期五餐廳”’還有 Outback Steak House 黛麗莎餐廳都不錯喔!!

  2. marcus 阿弟仔

    You can try to Kaohsiung to TGI Fridays”’There Outback Steak House Dai Lisha restaurants are good Oh!!

  3. DaveMustiane

    The language in Taiwan is complex, we have Chinese, Taiwanese, Hakka, and Formosan( the latter two are less heard), and it is difficult for a foreigner to learn and understand lauguage in Taiwan, because most people can and do speak both Chinese and Taiwanese at the same time.

  4. Local Taiwanese fan - Kev

    The southern part of Taiwan you mentioned in this post is “Pingtung,” rather than Pingtong. Just wanted to point this out because I’ve seen some foreigners spell this beautiful southern spot wrong.

    Another place I often see people misspell is “Taitung.” They sometimes would misspell Taitong, which is wrong. Taitung is the right name, which is located in the East part of Taiwan.

  5. DaveMustiane

    The pictures of the food look…@#%!*. I think it’s about time to introduce you some TURE Taiwanese food, like 碗粿(wa-guay), 蚵仔煎(er-ar-jian), and 蚵仔麵線(er-ar-mi-swa; there is a famous one in Ximen, called 阿宗麵線).Those three are what i can come up with immediately that represent some traditional food here in Taiwan. They may not be very delicious, but old folks like them very much. ^++++^

  6. BH

    Glad the team and yourself continue to do well and that you make it to the playoffs. Keep up the strong effort. Are most of the foreign players pitchers? Will you be playing Winter Ball ?

  7. 范綱智

    Hey Drucker!! I’m glad you are willing to write articles on baseball. Of course,selfish wants you to stay in Taiwan has been playing baseball, like Jonathan Hurst (former Met rookie pitching coach) or Michael Garcia (current Phillies scout) Taiwan will remember even if left here. Of course, you can upgrade the MLB better!! Because of your article so far in the other side of the U.S. fans can recognize Taiwan. Thank you. As for the gambling problem … I think the short term can not be resolved …. Then companies does not want to join the baseball team …. But my sincere hope CPBL can grow. And does not appear sad event again. I use google translation. Do not laugh at me if there are errors. ^ ^

  8. BH

    Just a friendly reminder to just relax and focus on pitch execution. After watching you pitch in a lot of games and spring training, “sometimes” you tend to spend just a little too much time thinking about the last game, then it becomes the last pitch you have thrown, and then you try too hard and your pitches flatten out . Have seen this cycle before.
    Be intelligent, understand those emotions, then “take control” by just staying with the basics and let the hitters get themselves out. Work hard and be smart.
    Sometimes, your biggest opponent is not the hitters you face in a game.
    Do not want to see anymore “tweets” on you need to get better ! YOU are a great professional pitcher. Simply Scot, just need to trust yourself and your stuff.
    Your Friend

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s