Sat, Oct 05, 2019 - Page 14 News List

Over 20,000 baseball fans shout ‘Don’t retire’ at an emotional retirement sendoff for ‘Chia-chia’
兩萬球迷吶喊不捨 「恰恰」告別賽淚灑球場

Peng Cheng-min, left, accompanied by his baseball mentor Yoshiyuki Sakakibara, ceremonially walks the bases one last time during a retirement sendoff after his final game at Taichung Intercontinental Baseball Stadium on Sept. 29.

Photo: Liao Yao-tung, Liberty Times

Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL) veteran player Peng Cheng-min, also known as “Chia-chia,” a slugger with the CTBC Brothers Baseball Club received a retirement sendoff on Sept. 29. A crowd of 20,223 supporters flocked to the stadium, using their cellphone flashlights to create a sea of light for the player. Peng choked back tears as he delivered a retirement speech after the game, saying: “Thank you all for believing in me and supporting me throughout the 19 years of my career.”

Since joining the Brother Elephants — now called the Brothers Baseball Club — in 2001, Peng soon became an ambassador figure for “second-generation Elephant players” as well as the team’s spiritual leader. When talking about the legendary batter, coaches, teammates and senior players all mention Peng’s earnest attitude both on and off the field, praising him as someone who is watchful of his reputation and who lives up to the ideals of his profession. Peng has played through a turbulent era with the club, when the league became engulfed in a series of game-fixing scandals. However, a famously clean and upright player, Peng is known for leading an honest and respectable life and became a beacon light during dark times for the league.

Throughout the team’s 30-year history, the Brothers has encountered many twists and turns. Peng thanked fans for staying with them: “I am honored to have experienced a 19-year career as a Brothers player. The current positive environment has been built little by little with the efforts of every one of you.”

Peng expressed his gratitude for the fans’ unwavering support and concern, accompanying players through the ups and downs of their careers: “Over the years, quite a few things have been said about me, but I want to thank you all for believing in me and for supporting me.”

(Translated by Chang Ho-ming, Taipei Times)






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