Sun, Apr 24, 2005 - Page 24 News List

There's no free lunch after baseball

By Paul Huang  /  CONTRIBUTING REPORTER

Huang Ping-yang recorded 69 complete games in 103 career starts during his professional baseball career. He also mastered the delivery of seven different types of pitches.

PHOTO: CPBL

The third and final part of the series named "Where are they now?" which visits former local athletic standouts who have transitioned into other careers after sports, takes us to former professional baseball pitching great Huang Ping-yang (黃平洋).

The man who earned a distinction as "the golden-armed man" for his ability to go the distance in a game (recording 69 complete games in 103 career starts with the Chinese Professional Baseball League) and his mastery over seven different pitches (the rainbow), was the most feared pitcher are the league in his day.

Huang joined the Macoto Gida of the former Taiwan Major League in the latter part of his career and eventually became the team's pitching coach before the merger of the two leagues in 2003.

At the age of 38, Huang decided leave pro sports after 20 years do something completely new.

After a failed attempt in tea sale, Huang decided to start his own lunchbox restaurant near the baseball stadium at Tienmu.

"One can't play baseball forever, so I decided to get into the lunchbox business because it gives me a chance to meet people face to face," Huang said.

"As a pitcher on the mound, I wasn't able to get too close to the fans. Now, I can share my experiences with them over a meal, and that's great."

With the lunchbox business taking off, Huang plans to open outlets at more locations to serve those who wish to recall his days on the baseball diamond with him over a tasty meal.

But unlike many sports figures who were caught with the mistake of overexpansion, Huang is opting for a more conservative approach.

"The last thing you want to see is growing too fast in a business and fading off quickly like a shooting star," Huang said.

"A pitcher who doesn't pace himself and ends up throwing away the game won't get very far in baseball either."

Huang knows that in order to go the distance in his newfound business, he must be patient and pay attention to details.

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