Results tagged ‘ Jen-Ho Tseng ’
Before batting practice Wednesday, some of the Cubs players saw top prospect Kris Bryant in one of the suites at Wrigley Field, and yelled at him to come down to join them. Not yet, but maybe next year. Bryant and Jen-Ho Tseng were honored Wednesday as the Cubs Minor League player and pitcher of the year, respectively. Bryant has been the focus since he was selected second overall in the 2013 First-Year Player Draft.
“I feel like I’ve been here the whole year and I haven’t played one game,” said Bryant, who was able to catch up with some of his Iowa teammates, including Logan Watkins, Mike Olt, Javier Baez and Rafael Lopez.
“I guess it’s bittersweet,” he said about being in a jacket and jeans and not in uniform. “It’s always been my dream to play in the big leagues and I hope for that day to come sometime.”
He could only watch as his Iowa teammates were promoted.
“It’s not up to me, it’s up to the guys in charge,” Bryant said. “I’ve always said my job is to make it hard on them and I think I did that this year, and that’s all I’m going to do the rest of my career.”
Since Iowa’s season ended, Bryant said he’s watched several Cubs games on television from his home in Las Vegas. He’s already been named the Minor League Player of the Year by Baseball America and USA Today. The Cubs want to see how the offseason goes before committing to him as the starting third baseman in 2015. Is Bryant prepared if he doesn’t make the big league roster on Opening Day next year?
“Yes,” he said. “I don’t think that will be a problem for me.”
Tseng, 19, went 6-1 with a 2.40 ERA in 19 games (17 starts) that spanned 105 innings with Class-A Kane County. He walked 15 batters and struck out 85, helping to lead the Cougars to a Minor League-best 91 wins and the Midwest League title. The righty, signed as a non-drafted free agent last year, allowed three or fewer runs in 16 of his 17 starts. His goal this season was to stay healthy, which he did. The right-hander was as eager to meet Bryant as some of the fans at Wrigley Field. Was Tseng ready to pitch on Wednesday?
“Yes,” he said, smiling.
— Carrie Muskat
Cubs fans will see Kris Bryant at Wrigley Field on Wednesday, but he won’t be in the lineup. Not yet. Bryant and Jen-Ho Tseng were named the Cubs organization’s Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Year, respectively. The pair will be honored prior to the Cubs game Wednesday against the Reds.
Bryant, 22, is the team’s No. 1 overall prospect (and No. 3 in baseball), according to MLB.com’s Prospect Watch, and Tseng was ranked 14th. Bryant led all of Minor League baseball with 43 home runs, 78 extra-base hits, 325 total bases, .661 slugging percentage and 1.098 OPS. He posted those stats, plus a .325 batting average, 34 doubles, and 110 RBIs in 138 games between Double-A Tennessee and Triple-A Iowa this season. This year, the third baseman, who was the Cubs’ first-round pick in 2013, also was named Minor League Player of the Year by Baseball America and USA Today.
Tseng, 19, went 6-1 with a 2.40 ERA in 19 games (17 starts) that spanned 105 innings with Class-A Kane County. He walked 15 batters and struck out 85, helping to lead the Cougars to a Minor League-best 91 wins and the Midwest League title. The righty, signed as a non-drafted free agent last year, allowed three or fewer runs in 16 of his 17 starts.
On Monday, the Cubs confirmed that they have signed 18-year-old Taiwanese right-hander Jen-Ho Tseng to a $1.625 million bonus. Tseng was ranked 29th on MLB.com’s list of top 30 international prospects. He was the youngest player named to the Chinese Taipei World Baseball Classic Roster. Tseng also was part of the 2012 World Junior Championship, and played in the 2012 Asian Baseball Championship for the national team for Chinese Taipe. His fastball has hit 95 mph.
Tseng was used as both a closer and a starter, and has an above average fastball, ranging from 89-96 mph, a real good slider in the mid to upper 80s. He also has an above average changeup, which is unique for a high school kid, and a very good curveball. The right-hander was a senior in high school when he pitched in the World Baseball Classic.
The Taiwan pro league started a draft this year in hopes of keeping players like Tseng from going to the U.S. Major Leagues. One scout told me: “This is a huge deal in Taiwan. Similar in its own right to a Kobe or Lebron signing out of high school. He is revered there. He is a wonderful kid, works hard and has a feel for pitching. I would say he is like getting an extra compensation round pick.”
The Cubs see Tseng as a starter. International scout Steve Wilson was instrumental in the signing.
— Carrie Muskat
The Cubs are close to a deal with teenage right-hander Jen-Ho Tseng from Taiwan, according to MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez. Tseng, ranked No. 29 on MLB.com’s Top 30 List of international prospects is expected to command a bonus of at least $1.5 million. The Cubs would not confirm the report.
Tseng, 18, is a known commodity in the international baseball world and was being pursued by several teams, including the Twins. The teenager is known for his upright, quick delivery and a fastball that can reach 95 mph. Poised and aggressive, he also throws a curveball and slider.
He also has a history on the big stage. A member of the 2012 World Junior Championship, Tseng also played in the 2012 Asian Baseball Championship for the national team for Chinese Taipei. He was the youngest player named to the Chinese Taipei World Baseball Classic roster.
So far, the Cubs have committed $3,470,000 of their $5,520,300 bonus pool to four players: shortstop Gleyber Torres, the top player from Venezuela and third-ranked international prospect, for $1.7 million; and Colombia’s right-handed pitcher Erling Moreno, ranked No. 17, for $650,000. The club also signed right-handed pitcher Jefferson Mejia for $850,000 and added catching prospect Johan Matos for $270,000.
According to Sanchez, the Cubs have a $2.8 million agreement in place with outfield prospect Eloy Jimenez, ranked no. 1, that put them $749,700 — or 13.6 percent — over their pool and into the penalty phase. Teams that exceed their pools by 10 to 15 percent are not allowed to sign a player for more than $500,000 during the 2014-2015 signing period and have to pay 100 percent tax on the pool overage.
In the most severe penalty, teams that exceed their pool by 15 percent or more are not allowed to sign a player for more than $250,000 during the next signing period and have to pay 100 percent tax on the pool overage. The Cubs can still acquire $1,315,600 in slot money because the Collective Bargaining Agreement allows teams to add up to 50 percent of the initial bonus pool, which in Chicago’s case was $4,557,200, but it won’t be enough money to keep them out of the most severe penalty.
Last week, the Cubs acquired four signing bonus slots — two from the Orioles and two from the Astros — in trades worth $963,000 on the first day of the international signing period.