Taiwanese pitcher Chen Wei-yin (陳偉殷) maintained his strong early season form and improved his record to 4-0 in leading the Baltimore Orioles to a 5-2 win over the New York Yankees and the previously undefeated C.C. Sabathia on Tuesday.
In his second encounter against the defending American League East champions, the rookie left-hander kept the Yankees off balance for much of the game with excellent command of his fastball and an effective changeup.
“The first time, the debut, I was so nervous,” Chen said through an interpreter. “This time, I was just like, ‘I’ve had this experience already,’ so everything was fine to me.”
The Greater Kaohsiung native got a no-decision in his major league debut on April 10 against the Yankees.
“[Chen’s] got his feet on the ground a little bit. He’s comfortable. Obviously, he’s pitching as well as any of our starters, and very early in the season, he’s doing quite well for us,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said after the game.
Chen held the Yankees scoreless through six innings before yielding a two-run home run to Curtis Granderson in the seventh on a ball that barely cleared the left-field wall. Orioles outfielder Xavier Avery appeared to have a chance to grab it, but a fan plucked it out of the air before Avery could get his glove on it.
Chen was given a standing ovation when he walked off the mound at the top of the eighth inning after being pulled when the Yankees sent in a pinch hitter.
“Early in the game, I had a little trouble finding the strike zone. I was too open, but then Matt [Wieters] helped get me straightened out,” Chen said, obviously pleased with his performance.
Showalter, who has brought hope to a team who have not had a winning season since 1997, said Chen’s ability to handle different situations and adversity has been impressive so far.
“He’s been in a lot of different venues and tonight was another one that he’s exposed to and handled well,” Showalter said of Chen, who pitched professionally for the Chunichi Dragons in Japan before signing with the Orioles.