Wei-Yin Chen

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Wei-Yin Chen
Wei-Yin Chen (16954371808).jpg
Chen with the Baltimore Orioles
Baltimore Orioles – No. 16
Born: (1985-07-21) July 21, 1985 (age 30)
Kaohsiung County, Taiwan
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Professional debut
NPB: April 3, 2005 for the Chunichi Dragons
MLB: April 10, 2012 for the Baltimore Orioles
NPB[1] statistics
Win–loss record 36–30
Earned run average 2.59
Strikeouts 520
MLB statistics
(through 2015 season)
Win–loss record 46-32
Earned run average 3.72
Strikeouts 547
Career highlights and awards
  • 2009 NPB Central League ERA title

Wei-Yin Chen[2] (Chinese: 陳偉殷; pinyin: Chén Wěi-yīn; born July 21, 1985) is a Taiwanese professional baseball pitcher with the Baltimore Orioles of Major League Baseball (MLB) in the United States. Prior to joining the Orioles, Chen spent four years pitching in the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) league in Japan.

Early life[edit]

Wei-Yin Chen was born in Kaohsiung County, Taiwan. He studied at Kaoyuan Vocational High School, which was also attended by current Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Tsao Chin-Hui.[3]


Chunichi Dragons[edit]

Chen played for the Chinese Taipei National Team in the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games.[4] He was a pitcher for the Chunichi Dragons in Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) from 2004 through 2011. Chen had Tommy John surgery at the end of 2006 season.[5] His best season in Japan came in 2009 when he posted a 1.54 earned run average (ERA) to lead the league.[3] When he came out of the Nippon League, FanGraphs described him as being an extreme control pitcher with poor velocity.[6] A clause implemented into his contract with Chunichi allowed him to opt out after the 2011 season at age 26.[6]

Baltimore Orioles[edit]

2012 season[edit]

After the 2011 season, Chen signed as an international free agent with the Baltimore Orioles.[7] Chen was the first Taiwanese player ever signed by the Orioles.[8] He made his MLB debut on April 10, 2012 against the New York Yankees in Baltimore. The game was broadcast live on national television in native Taiwan,[9] and Chen totaled 523 innings and gave up two earned runs striking out six in a no-decision that the Orioles would later go on to lose in extra innings.[10] In total, Chen finished the season leading the team with 32 starts during which he totaled 12 wins and 11 losses and posted an ERA of 4.02 in 192.2 innings pitched.[11] In 2012, Chen was "the only constant in the (Orioles) rotation" and was consistent throughout the year.[12]

2013 season[edit]

Coming out of spring training, Chen won the number two spot in the Orioles' starting rotation behind Jason Hammel.[13] Chen set a goal to throw 200 innings on the season. In his first three starts, he lacked run support and went 0-2 despite posting a 4.00 ERA.[14] On May 15, 2013, the Orioles placed Chen on the disabled list, his first-ever stint there, with an injury to his right oblique.[15] In his return from the disabled list on July 10, 2013, Chen pitched seven innings in a matchup against the Texas Rangers striking out four and allowing three hits, earning the win.[16] Overall in 2013, Chen finished 7-7 with a 4.07 ERA in 23 starts. During the 2013 off-season, Chen underwent knee surgery to remove bone spurs.

2014 season[edit]

Chen pitched a season-high of eight strikeouts in a win against the Seattle Mariners on August 1, 2014. He dedicated the win to victims of the 2014 Kaohsiung gas explosions, which occurred hours earlier in his hometown.[17] On September 10, Chen picked up his 15th win of the season against the Boston Red Sox and carried a perfect game into the sixth inning until Dan Butler's first major league hit.[18] Chen finished the season with a 16-6 record and 3.54 ERA over 185 2/3 innings.[19] In game 3 of the 2014 ALCS on October 14, Chen pitched 5 1/3 innings on 80 pitches and gave up 2 runs in a loss against the Kansas City Royals. Chen became the first Taiwanese pitcher to start an ALCS game.[20]

2015 season[edit]

On June 26, 2015, Chen became the second Taiwanese-born player to have 100 career starts in the major leagues, allowing two runs and striking out five over six innings in a no decision against the Cleveland Indians.[21]

Despite only recording a 4-5 record at the break, Chen pitched to a 2.78 ERA and 1.09 WHIP, along with 90 strikeouts in 110.0 innings over the first half of the season. Chen finished the season with a 11-8 record and a career-best 3.34 ERA over 191 1/3 innings pitched.[22]

Scouting report[edit]

An "extreme flyball pitcher",[23] Chen pitches from a three-quarters arm slot and throws a four-seam fastball averaging 91 mph.[24] In addition, he throws a two-seamer, a slider, an occasional curveball, and a changeup.[24] Since he previously pitched in Japan where he started on five days rest rather than four, with the Orioles he initially had durability issues and was 0-4 in his last seven starts in 2012.[25] Chen has been described as a legitimate middle-of-the-rotation starter.[26][27] An opposing scout said, "I watched Wei-Yin Chen and swore I was watching Tom Glavine. He has such an effortless delivery and an above-average change up, and knows how to pitch inside."[28]


  1. ^ Nippon Professional Baseball. 個人年度別成績 【チェン(陳偉殷) (中日ドラゴンズ)】 (in Japanese). Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 2012-07-19. 
  2. ^ "Wei-Yin Chen Stats, Video Highlights, Photos, Bio / Baltimore Orioles". MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved 19 July 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Huang, Paul (14 June 2012). "Taiwan’s Chen Wei-yin makes history". Taipei Times. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  4. ^ "Chen Wei-Yin". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Retrieved 12 May 2012. 
  5. ^ Keh, Andrew (2 September 2012). "Rookie Wei-Yin Chen is the constant in Baltimore's rotation". The New York Times. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Golebiewski, David (10 January 2012). "Who is Wei- Yin Chen?". FanGraphs Fantasy Baseball. FanGraphs. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  7. ^ Ghiroli, Brittany (10 January 2012). "Wei-Yin Chen gives Orioles veteran left-handed starter". MLB.com: News. MLB Advanced Media. 
  8. ^ Chen, Albert (22 June 2012). "Wei-Yin Chen just one of Baltimore Orioles' recent international signings". SI.com. Time. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  9. ^ Encina, Eduardo (11 April 2012). "Baltimore gets first glimpse of Chen, but falls short in 12". The Washington Post (via HighBeam Research (subscription required)). Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  10. ^ "Wei-Yin Chen Game By Game Stats and Performance". Baltimore Orioles - ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 27 March 2013. 
  11. ^ "Major League Baseball Stats". orioles.com: Stats. MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  12. ^ "Breaking down the Orioles starting rotation options". Camden Chat - SB Nation. Vox Media. 15 February 2013. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  13. ^ White, R.J. (27 March 2013). "Wei-Yin Chen named Orioles' No. 2 starter". CBSSports.com. CBS Interactive. Retrieved 3 April 2013. the source is in the scroll box in the center of the page; no permalink exists 
  14. ^ Ghiroli, Brittany (14 April 2013). "Baltimore Orioles at New York Yankees - April 14, 2013". MLB.com BAL Recap. MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved 16 April 2013. 
  15. ^ Associated Press (15 May 2013). "Baltimore Orioles place Wei-Yin Chen on DL with oblique strain". ESPN. ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  16. ^ "Orioles' Wei-Yin Chen beats Rangers in return from DL". USA TODAY. Associated Press. 10 July 2013. Retrieved 11 July 2013. 
  17. ^ Baltimore Orioles: A win for Wei-Yin Chen and for Taiwan
  18. ^ Orioles beat Red Sox 10-6; Wei-Yin Chen picks up 15th win of the year
  19. ^ Chen falls short of 17th victory in loss to Jays
  20. ^ Wei-Yin Chen was good, but Orioles needed better to beat Royals
  21. ^ Chen makes welcome return to O's rotation
  22. ^ Wei-Yin Chen makes perhaps last Orioles start in doubleheader sweep of Yankees
  23. ^ "2013 Baseball Preview & Player Rankings". MLB.com: News. Player number 324: MLB Advanced Media. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  24. ^ a b "Wei-Yin Chen Ptich Type". FanGraphs Baseball. FanGraphs. Retrieved 5 Sep 2015. 
  25. ^ Reynolds, Drew (20 December 2012). "Wei-Yin Chen - Baltimore Orioles Starting Rotation Options for 2013". Bleacher Report. Turner Broadcasting System. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  26. ^ Stoner, Chris (28 February 2013). "2013 Projections: Wei-Yin Chen". Baltimore Sports and LifeBaltimore Sports and Life. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  27. ^ Sports Network (26 March 2013). "Baltimore Orioles 2013 Preview". Fox News. Philadelphia: FOX News Network. Retrieved 28 March 2013. 
  28. ^ Reiter, Ben (1 April 2013), "Baseball Preview", Sports Illustrated: 76, retrieved 28 March 2013 

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