Jen-Ho Tseng

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Jen-Ho Tseng (曾仁和)

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Biographical Information[edit]

Jen-Ho Tseng debuted for the Taiwan national team when he was just 18 years old and made the majors five years later. His sister Chi Tseng has pitched for Taiwan's women national team.

Tseng was 0-1 with a 1.80 ERA in the 2011 Asian Junior Championship. In the 2012 World Junior Championship, he was superb at 3-0, 0.84 with a save. In 21 1/3 innings, he fanned 22 and allowed only 12 hits and 2 walks. He beat Canada, South Korea and Colombia. He was second in the event in strikeouts (four behind Shintaro Fujinami), led in wins and tied Jae-min Shim for the most appearances (6). He was named the tourney's All-Star relief pitcher.

Jen-Ho then was the only high schooler picked for Taiwan's squad in the 2013 World Baseball Classic Qualifiers, 3 1/2 years younger than Yao-Lin Wang, the next-youngest). He made his lone appearance in their 9-0 win over New Zealand in the finale. Relieving Kai-Wen Cheng with a 7-0 lead in the 7th, he retired Moko Moanaroa then walked Beau Bishop. Tseng recovered to fan two players with minor league experience in the US, Alan Schoenberger and Tim Auty, to end the inning. He was replaced by Yen-Feng Lin in the 8th. He remained with Taiwan for the 2012 Asian Championship, going 1-0 and tossing six shutout innings; he beat rival South Korea to help ensure Taiwan getting a Silver Medal and Korea the Bronze.

On July 25, 2013, he signed a minor league contact with the Chicago Cubs. He went 6-1, 2.40 for the Kane County Cougars of the Midwest League in his first season in organized baseball in 2014, then followed that in 2015 by going 7-7, 3.55 for the Myrtle Beach Pelicans of the Carolina League. With the Tennessee Smokies of the Southern League in 2016, he was 6-8, 4.29 in 22 starts. He had an excellent season in the minors in 2017, split between Tennesse and the AAA Iowa Cubs as he was a combined 13-4, 2.54 in 24 starts. He tied Duane Underwood for second in the Cubs chain in wins and led with 122 strikeouts (3 ahead of Seth Frankoff). He was a mid-season All-Star in the Southern League and was named the Cubs minor league pitcher of the year for the second time, having already been the recipient of the honor after his first season in 2014. He was called up to Chicago in September. He was the 10th major league pitcher from Taiwan. He was obviously nervous in his debut against the New York Mets on September 14th, as his first pitch was behind the batter, then he fell while covering first base against the next batter, being charged with an error, and also collected a hit batsman before the inning was over. He ended up giving up 5 runs in 3 innings, but the Cubs still won the game, 14-6.

Tseng throws a slider, sinker, changeup and knuckle-curve. His peak speed has been 95 mph as of 2012.


Further Reading[edit]

  • Carrie Muskat: "Tseng shakes nerves, shows promise in debut: Cubs righty impresses Maddon despite allowing five runs in three innings",, September 15, 2017. [1]

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