Cheng-Wei Chang

From BR Bullpen

Cheng-Wei Chang (張正偉) (The Flower)

  • Bats Left, Throws Left
  • Height 5' 9", Weight 163 lb.

BR register page

Biographical Information[edit]

Cheng-Wei Chang played in the Chinese Professional Baseball League for 12 years; in 7 of those, he was named one of the league's top three outfielders. Chang is the nephew of Tai-Shan Chang, a cousin of Chih-Hao Chang and Cheng-Shun Wang, and is a more distant relative of Chung-Shou Yang, Yao-Hsun Yang, Chien-Fu Yang, Chih-Yuan Chen, Sen Yang and Tung-Yi Yang.

Chang was drafted by the Sinon Bulls in the 7th round of the 2008 CPBL Draft. He led the Taiwanese minors in hits (81) and average (a record .409) in 2009. When Sinon let him go, he signed with the Brother Elephants. On March 20, he got his first CPBL hit, a single off Wei-Lun Pan. He hit .297/.360/.377 as a rookie with 15 steals (but 10 times caught), and he was 8th in the 2010 CPBL in average (.060 behind Cheng-Min Peng). He won CPBL Gold Glove and Best Nine honors in the outfield as a rookie. In the 2010 Taiwan Series, Chang hit .438/.500/.500, and helped the Brothers sweep the Bulls; he won the Outstanding Player award.

The Taitung native extended his solid batting in 2011, hitting .351/.424/.438 with 170 hits and 10 triples. He led the league in at-bats, runs, triples, steals, walks, batting and OBP. His 556 plate appearance in a season is still the CPBL record as of 2023. Chang was also selected into the 2011 CPBL All-Star Game, and he was 2-for-3 with 2 runs scored. He won his second Best Nine award. He was the first CPBL batting title winner that accomplished the feat without hitting a homer.

Chang set several records in 2012. He broke Cheng-Tan Hsu's record for reaching 358 hits without a homer, and also broke Jay Kirkpatrick's 55-game on-base streak record; he later extended it to 58 games. On September 9, he broke Hector Roa's CPBL record by hitting his 14th triple of the season, and also surpassed Ming-Hsien Lin to become the career triple leader for the Elephants (even though he was only in his third season!). He was 2-for-3 with 2 runs in the 2012 CPBL All-Star Game. Chang ended up hitting .352/.411/.466 with 15 triples, leading the league in triples, hits, at-bats, runs and steals. He ranked 4th in batting, . 036 behind Wu-Hsiung Pan.

After his gorgeous 2012 season, Chang played in several international events for Taiwan. He hit .318/.348/.409 with a triple in the 2012 Asian Championship, and he led the tournament with 6 runs scored. Taiwan won Silver in the event, losing to Japan. Chang then represented Taiwan in the 2013 World Baseball Classic Qualifiers, and he was 1-for-4 with 3 runs scored and 3 walks to help Taiwan advance to the 2013 World Baseball Classic. In the 13' WBC, Chang was a backup outfielder behind Dai-Kang Yang, Che-Hsuan Lin and Chien-Ming Chang, so he only had one at-bat (retired by Toshiya Sugiuchi). Taiwan was eliminated in the second round.

Chang became the first player to collect 5 hits in a game for the fourth time, when he did so on May 23, 2013, and he ended up hitting .308/.351/.361 with 15 doubles in that season. He became the first player to get 2 hits in an inning in All-Star history in the 2013 CPBL All-Star Game, and he also scored 2 times and drove in 2 runs. Chang collected his fourth Best Nine as an outfielder. He finally crushed the first home run of his career on July 30, 2014; that he used 5 years, 522 games and 2,069 at-bats were all CPBL records. Chang set the CPBL record for hits in a month in August, and broke Chih-Hao Chang and Chia-Hao Chang's record to become the CPBL all-time triples leader (in just his 5th season!). He ended up hitting .320/.375/.403 with 25 doubles, ranked 3rd in batting (.020 behind Chin-Lung Hu), 3rd in runs (13 behind Hu and Yi-Chuan Lin), 3rd in hits (8 behind Hu) and 5th in doubles (7 behind Lin). He was 2-for-3 with a run scored in the 2014 CPBL All-Star Game. In the 2014 Taiwan Series, Chang was 3-for-16 and the Lamigo Monkeys beat the Brothers in 5 games. He won his fifth consecutive Best Nine, and collected his second Gold Glove.

In the 2015 season, Chang was still a solid leadoff hitter. He recorded a .335/.408/.423 batting line with 25 doubles, ranked 9th in hits (31 behind Hu), 8th in batting (.048 behind Hu), 6th in runs (22 behind Kuo-Hui Kao) and 8th in doubles (6 behind Chun-Hsiu Chen. Chang hit .381/.441/.484 with 3 doubles in the 2015 Taiwan Series, but the Brothers still lost to the Monkeys in 7 games. He won his sixth Best Nine, and became the first outfielder in CPBL history to win 6 consecutive Best Nine awards. Chang became the first player to hit an inside-the-park home run on opening day, in 2016, and he ended up hitting .342/.408/.424 with 24 doubles. He was 2-for-3 with a double in the 2016 CPBL All-Star Game. Chang ranked 9th in batting (.072 behind Po-Jung Wang), 3rd in hits (51 behind Wang) and 8th in doubles (16 behind Wang). He then made it onto Taiwan's roster for the 2017 World Baseball Classic, but he didn't appear in any games.

Chang was named the leadoff hitter in the 2017 CPBL All-Star Game, and he was 4-for-6. In the 9th inning, he hit the first walk-off hit in All-Star history against Yun-Wen Chen, and he was named the MVP. Chang ended up hitting .317/.403/.422 with 27 doubles, and he ranked 6th in doubles (7 behind Chieh-Hsien Chen). However, after the 2017 season, the Brothers unexpectedly released three star players, and Chang left the team with Da-Hung Cheng and Chih-Hsien Chiang.

The Fubon Guardians picked him up, and he hit .294/.374/.371 with 19 doubles in 2018. He had a .315/.378/.392 batting line in 2019, but he only played 65 games with a .297/.387/.379 batting line in 2020. Chang stayed in the minor league for nearly the entire 2021 season, then the Guardians released him, and his professional career ended.

Overall, Chang hit .323/.391/.408 with 1,396 hits, 220 doubles and 51 triples in 12 seasons in CPBL.

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