Tianjin Lions - 2016 CBL Champions
Let me get some old news out of the way. The Tianjin Lions won their 6th CBL Championship last year by sweeping the Beijing Tigers 3 games to 0. You can check out some of the celebration pictures here: http://www.chinatimes.com/realtimenews/20160910004988-260403
China Baseball League Will Resume in July to December
China Baseball Association recently posted the 2017 baseball tournament schedule. CBL will take place from July through December. December?! Well, that's all the information for now. I will update once more information comes out.
CBL was recently ranked 98th on sports sponsorship value in China. This means baseball in China is somewhat relevant and not just a niche sport. Here is the fill list of the ranking: http://tieba.baidu.com/p/4936161109
World Baseball Classic
If you haven't heard it by now China will be playing in Pool B against Japan, Cuba and Australia in the 2017 World Baseball Classic(Also known as the pool of death). Their chances of advancing out of the first round is slim to none. Their chances of qualifying for the next WBC is also slim unless they pull a miracle and maybe MAYBE beat Team Australia.
Raymond Chang has also announced his retirement this month. For those who don't know who he is, Chang is a career minor leaguer who reached Triple A, but never made it to the show. He was the hero for Team China in 2009 where they beat Taiwan and also in 2013 where they beat Brazil. He will play for Team China and then work with MLB China to promote the game there. I thought Chang would've at least been called up to the show for his defense, but that never happened. Best of luck to Chang! Here's his career stats: http://www.baseball-reference.com/register/player.cgi?id=chang-001ray
As for the Team China's roster, it hasn't been officially released yet. The only player that has agreed to play so far is Joey Wong who announced it on his twitter account. There has been speculations that they are trying to recruit Bruce Chen and Vance Worley to play. Bruce Chen retired in 2015 and Vance Worley was non-tendered by the Orioles last year so they might not be interested in participating. Other eligible players are Kolten Wong and his brother Kean Wong. No words on Xu Gui Yuan as well. Austin Brice, a Marlin's prospect who made it to the show last year, was born in Hong Kong. Maybe Team China should give him a call!
- I found this touching documentary about baseball in China called "Dream Chaser" directed by Yu Xiaofan. Players and coaches talk about their love of the game and and what baseball means to them. John McLaren makes an appearance. The video has English subtitles so everyone can enjoy it! Promote and share it!
- Veteran Taiwanese pitcher Chien Ming Wang announced that he will retire if he does not get any offers to play in the Majors this year. He will rest for a year and return to Taiwan to coach children.
- There will be a new Asian Baseball Championship tournament taking place in Tokyo from November 16-19. The only organizations in it so far are NPB, KBO and CPBL. No word on CBL,
Anyway, I want to wish everyone a Happy Lunar New Year 新年快樂! I hope for the best for China baseball and its development. Keep on fighting and 加油！Thanks for reading and have a fantastic day!