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1997 CPBL

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The 1997 Chinese Professional Baseball League season was the 8th season for the Chinese Professional Baseball League and the league faced its first major challenges. The Taiwan Major League set itself up as a rival and a few CPBL stars jumped to the new league, such a two-time MVP Yi-Hsin Chen. Meanwhile, other stars were caught in a gambling scandal, the "Black Eagles incident" which severely depleted the China Times Eagles. Among those whose careers came to an end were the other two-time MVP, Chin-Hsing Kuo, 1992 Olympian Chi-Hsin Chen, former home run leader Ming-Hsiung Liao, two-time save leader Chien-Cheng Kuo, 1992 Olympian Kuo-Chian Ku, hit record holder Kuei-Chang Tseng, 1988 Olympian Hung-Chin Tu and 1992 Olympian Kuang-Shih Wang. Seven players were abducted in August and held by gangsters who had lost money during the scandal. The Eagles still made it to the 1997 Taiwan Series (thanks to a strong first half before the suspensions and second-half collapse), where they fell to the Wei Chuan Dragons.

The league expanded to 7 teams with the addition of the Chinatrust Whales (who would implode in another gambling scandal the next decade). Bernie Tatis shattered the league's stolen base record, topping the old mark by 24 by swiping 71 bases. Enrique Burgos won his fourth strikeout title in the league's 8 seasons, only 5 of which he had been present for.

Contents

[edit] Standings

  1. Uni-President Lions, 28-16-4 first half; 30-15-3 second half
  2. Wei Chuan Dragons, 15-31-2 first half; 31-15-2 second half
  3. Mercuries Tigers, 22-22-4 first half; 24-22-2 second half
  4. Sinon Bulls, 20-26-2 first half; 25-22-1 second half
  5. Brother Elephants, 29-19-2 first half; 23-24-3 second half
  6. China Times Eagles, 30-16-2 first half; 11-35-2 second half
  7. Chinatrust Whales, 20-27-1 first half; 19-29 second half

[edit] Awards

The CPBL MVP went to Mike Garcia of the Dragons, who led in both ERA and saves. The Rookie of the Year went to Chuang-Chen Chueh of the Whales, who hit .263/.317/.348 and stole 31 bases.

[edit] Gold Gloves

[edit] Best Ten

[edit] Offensive Leaders

[edit] Pitching Leaders

Sources include 1998 Baseball Almanac, CPBL website, Taiwan Baseball Wiki

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