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View Full Version : Reds sign 19 yr old Tzu-Kai Chui out of Taiwan?



dougdirt
03-11-2007, 05:37 PM
Someone on my site asked me if I had heard of this, and I haven't, but he posted a link to a blog entry about Taiwan baseball and here is what it says

http://taiwanbaseball.blogspot.com/2007/03/tzu-kai-chiu-signs-with-reds.html
The Cincinnati Reds were able to break into the Taiwanese market by signing 19 year LHP Tzu-Kai Chiu. Chiu received an estimated $200,000 signing bonus + additional money for his education. Chiu stands around 6'0" tall and weighs close to 200 pounds. Chiu has been on the MLB radar for quite some time now - refer to this Jan. '06 post to read more about Chiu. Chiu is currently in his first year of college but will be heading to the US shortly for a physical. Chiu throws comfortably in the 85 to 87 mph range with touches of 89 mph on his fastball - Chiu's best pitch is his curveball. Congrats to Chiu!


Just wondering if anyone had seen anything on this?

OnBaseMachine
03-11-2007, 05:57 PM
I typed his name into google and the first thing that popped up was his signing with the Reds. About time we started tapping into these countries for talent. This is exciting to me. Krivsky and Castellini understand what it takes to build a strong farm system and now they are doing something about it. Hopefully this is the first of many Internation signings. I remember the Reds were also strong players in the Dominican signings a while back...IIRC, we were close to signing Tony Pena's son.

More info on Tzu-Kai Chui:

1)Tzu-Kai Chiu - LHP: DOB: 9/14/87 Stands 6'0 tall, weighs close to 200 pounds. Throws around 89 to 90 mph max. This kid has been on the youth national team scene for a while now. In 2003, he led Taiwan to the gold by beating both South Korea and Japan in the Asian Youth Championships. At the time, the Colorado Rockies were pursuing Chiu pretty heavily after establishing the Tsao and Lo pitching pipeline. Chiu was also on the 2003 World Youth Baseball Championship silver medal winning team. Chiu started the title game against the US, but took the loss in that game. Chiu then represented Chinese Taipei at the abbreviated 2004 World Junior Baseball Championships where he went 1-1 (W/L), had a 0.00 ERA and K'd 4 in 2.1 IP.

OnBaseMachine
03-11-2007, 05:59 PM
Also, I remember reading over the summer where the Reds signed some 18 year old catcher from the Czech Republic. I believe I even posted it on here. I'll try to dig it up real quick.

edabbs44
03-11-2007, 06:00 PM
Love the fact that they are looking outside of the uS...but this just seems plain weird. He's been on the MLB radar for quite some time, yet only touches 89 mph while being comfortable in the 85-87 mph range?

Does this organization have something against pitchers who throw over 90 mph?

Only half kidding above...I'm happy that they are finally trying to get out in other mkts. That has been one of the biggest problems with this team over the past 5-10 years. Nice...hopefully more to come.

dougdirt
03-11-2007, 06:01 PM
Love the fact that they are looking outside of the uS...but this just seems plain weird. He's been on the MLB radar for quite some time, yet only touches 89 mph while being comfortable in the 85-87 mph range?

Does this organization have something against pitchers who throw over 90 mph?

Only half kidding above...I'm happy that they are finally trying to get out in other mkts. That has been one of the biggest problems with this team over the past 5-10 years. Nice...hopefully more to come.

Well on the bright side, he is a lefty. Lefties in general dont have to throw as hard as righties to succeed in the majors. Another thing, he is still young and can add a little velocity probably.

OnBaseMachine
03-11-2007, 06:01 PM
Love the fact that they are looking outside of the uS...but this just seems plain weird. He's been on the MLB radar for quite some time, yet only touches 89 mph while being comfortable in the 85-87 mph range?

Does this organization have something against pitchers who throw over 90 mph?

Only half kidding above...I'm happy that they are finally trying to get out in other mkts. That has been one of the biggest problems with this team over the past 5-10 years. Nice...hopefully more to come.

The last report I posted on him says he sits around 89-90, which isn't bad for a 19 year-old lefty.

edabbs44
03-11-2007, 06:03 PM
The last report I posted on him says he sits around 89-90, which isn't bad for a 19 year-old lefty.

Yeah, but that report was from over a year ago.

I'm not too worried about the velocity at this point. What did strike me as odd was the "on the radar for some time" comment when he is in the high 80s. What would put someone on MLB's radar if you aren't even hitting 90? Projectibility?

OnBaseMachine
03-11-2007, 06:03 PM
Here it is:

Petr Chech, an 18-year-old catcher from the Czech Republic, has already signed with Cincinnati. He'll attend the academy and later join the Reds' fall instructional program.

Here's the thread link:

http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48859&highlight=Czech+Republic

edabbs44
03-11-2007, 06:04 PM
Well on the bright side, he is a lefty. Lefties in general dont have to throw as hard as righties to succeed in the majors. Another thing, he is still young and can add a little velocity probably.

Don't get me wrong...I am very happy about this move. Shows that they are moving in the right direction. Though I'd like to see the LatAm mkt get a little more attention. Did they ever get a replacement for Almaraz?

dougdirt
03-11-2007, 06:09 PM
Don't get me wrong...I am very happy about this move. Shows that they are moving in the right direction. Though I'd like to see the LatAm mkt get a little more attention. Did they ever get a replacement for Almaraz?

Tony Arias is now the Director of Latin America Scouting.

edabbs44
03-11-2007, 06:34 PM
Tony Arias is now the Director of Latin America Scouting.

I just googled him...check out this interview with Dick Scott (Dir of Player Development for Toronto) from 2005. Hysterical.


InsideTheDome: Not many fans are familiar with the Dominican Summer League and its Toronto affiliate. What can you tell us about Wilfreddy Aguirre, Francisco Mateo and 2004 Webster Award Winner Jesus Gonzalez?

Dick Scott: Our Dominican team has had some success the past few years as they made the playoffs. They play the game the right way, and a lot of that credit goes to Tony Arias who is our Latin American Coordinator. It really is hard to gauge them, because many of them are "toolsy" guys. Not too many guys come out and make an impact hitting wise. As far as pitching is concerned, they really are young guys. The hitters are still not disciplined and the pitchers can get away with throwing pitches out of the zone as the hitters chase breaking balls, but I will say this - the difficulty they have is when we bring them to the states it is a whole new world for them, and you need to realize they are changing their entire way of living now, and must adapt to our customs along with our way of life. It really is a huge adjustment, and I am very sympathetic to that, and try to give guys ample time to try and make the adjustments. We have an EAP program that we use to teach the guys English during spring training and during extended spring training, and for our other clubs we find an English teacher in every city that we have a minor league team at. It is mandatory for the players to go to class and try to learn the language. As I told them many times, and they are real aware of this, the sooner they capture the language, the better their game will be.

Sounds like he'll fit right in. :laugh:

mth123
03-11-2007, 06:56 PM
Glad to see the reds break into Asia.

When this kid plays AA ball will he be the Chattanooga Tzu Chui?

Sorry, I had to do it.

HBP
03-11-2007, 09:20 PM
Glad to see the reds break into Asia.

When this kid plays AA ball will he be the Chattanooga Tzu Chui?

Sorry, I had to do it.

:laugh: Well done.

jt4prez
03-11-2007, 10:14 PM
Here it is:

Petr Chech, an 18-year-old catcher from the Czech Republic, has already signed with Cincinnati. He'll attend the academy and later join the Reds' fall instructional program.

Goal, Goal, Goal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5ToolPlaya
03-12-2007, 01:10 AM
What name follows "Rusty Kuntz" as the best baseball name of all time? Petr Chech!

dougdirt
03-12-2007, 01:56 AM
What name follows "Rusty Kuntz" as the best baseball name of all time? Petr Chech!

Dick Pole.
Dick Drago.

Topcat
03-12-2007, 02:37 AM
Great News thanks dirt and OBM for updates and info on this thread. I know many grumble about the $$$$ being spent on the MLB roster but for long term success I truly believe the Minors have to be the pipeline for our team. Prospects can be traded and groomed for our future so I am very pleased by the developments of the past 3 years.

texasdave
03-12-2007, 09:17 PM
I suppose he starts the year out in Dayton? They wouldn't make him wait until the rookie leagues start, would they?

dougdirt
03-12-2007, 09:28 PM
It all depends on how he does in Spring Training I guess.... or even for that fact that he can get a VISA to come play in the country.

redsmetz
03-12-2007, 10:24 PM
It all depends on how he does in Spring Training I guess.... or even for that fact that he can get a VISA to come play in the country.

Whatever happened to that law change Congress was considering that would place baseball players under the exemptions of seasonal tourist workers and such? I thought they were resolving this last year?

dougdirt
03-12-2007, 10:38 PM
Maybe thats true. I know what you are talking about, but I havent seen anything that has said one way or the other if this law has gone into affect yet.

fargo55
03-12-2007, 11:02 PM
Found few notes from the Indians' Scout who liked this guy. This was posted about 16 months ago.

"Scouting director John Mirabelli just returned from a two-week trip to Japan and Taiwan. The Indians have spent the last three years increasing their presence in the Far East".

"There could be a number of high-profile guys coming out of Asian Baseball this year," Mirabelli said. players usually become available through free agency or a posting system in November. Mirabelli said "three to 10 legitimate guys" could be available this winter.
. . .

"Mirabelli, on his visit to Taiwan, offered a contract to an 18-year-old pitcher. Negotiations are ongoing." This was with Tzu Kai, according to a different source

"I'm not going to tell you his name because other teams are involved," Mirabelli said.
So who is this mystery 18-year-old-pitcher? Tzu Kai was the Guy, he was hurt at the time and Mirabelli of the Indians didn't bite. Back and shoulder were concerns. Apparently the Reds feel he made a nice recovery. Found reports of him hitting 90, and after an attempt at internet translation, from a Korean article, I think they said "Prowess of Lion".

edabbs44
03-12-2007, 11:08 PM
Back and shoulder were concerns? Now I definitely see what they saw in him. ;)

fargo55
03-12-2007, 11:43 PM
You're a funny guy, look for him in Dayton. The Dayton group of Pitchers looks like Nickols, Alford, Rice, Schaler, Williams, Ravin........ and Tzu Kai. That is part of the current group working together. Yount has, at the age of thirty, bought a ticket for AA.

fargo55
03-12-2007, 11:51 PM
Whatever happened to that law change Congress was considering that would place baseball players under the exemptions of seasonal tourist workers and such? I thought they were resolving this last year?

Since they don't pay these kids until the season starts, it's my understanding he can be here until April 5th, when the season starts. If they paid the guys, he'd need a Work Visa exemption. That is something that the State Department is supposed to be working hard to make the proper exemptions.

ColoradoHigh
03-14-2007, 10:35 PM
Since they don't pay these kids until the season starts, it's my understanding he can be here until April 5th, when the season starts. If they paid the guys, he'd need a Work Visa exemption. That is something that the State Department is supposed to be working hard to make the proper exemptions.

That sounds right. My Dad is down there watching and says he has not seen him yet. I'd think sooner is better, the minor's games are getting started between intra-squads tomorrow. I'll pass along any relayed news.

ColoradoHigh
03-14-2007, 10:38 PM
Back and shoulder were concerns? Now I definitely see what they saw in him. ;)

Then again, maybe edabbs44 knows.

OnBaseMachine
03-20-2007, 08:35 PM
Via Global Baseball, the Reds have signed 19-year old Taiwanese LHP Tzu-Kai Chiu to a deal that includes a $200,000 signing bonus. jhelfgott, who runs Global Baseball, suggests that this may be a “statement signing” to indicate that they intend to be involved in future Chinese Taipei (as they are known in international tournaments) player signings

http://www.redlegnation.com/

Outshined_One
03-21-2007, 12:05 PM
Maybe thats true. I know what you are talking about, but I havent seen anything that has said one way or the other if this law has gone into affect yet.

It's a part of the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S._2611), which passed the Senate last year, but has since been in limbo.

dfs
03-21-2007, 01:35 PM
I suppose he starts the year out in Dayton? They wouldn't make him wait until the rookie leagues start, would they?
I sure hope they make him wait. 19 year olds with shoulder and back problems don't need to be starting off in low A ball.

MartyFan
03-26-2007, 04:57 AM
Glad to see the reds break into Asia.

When this kid plays AA ball will he be the Chattanooga Tzu Chui?

Sorry, I had to do it.

No you didn't. But I'm glad you did!

:)