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2002 Taiwan Series

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The 2002 Taiwan Series was the second of three straight Taiwan Series titles for the Brother Elephants.

The Elephants won the 2002 CPBL first half (25-17-3) and second half (28-16-1) under manager I-Tseng Lin. They had three players named to the Best Ten: 1B Feng-An Tsai (.294/.343/.529, a league-high 84 RBI), OF Chih-Yuan Chen (.289/.373/.519, 15 HR, 32 SB) and DH Cheng-Min Peng (.310/.445/.588, 18 HR, 71 RBI). Jui-Chang Chen hit .356/.410/.443 in limited playing time. Jonathan Hurst (16-8, 2.65, the co-leader in wins) and Shin Nakagomi (15-9, 3.26) provided strong pitching.

The Chinatrust Whales were making their last Taiwan Series appearance. Managed by Chung-Chiu Lin, they were 21-21-3 in the first half and 24-21 in the second half. Despite the worse record, they had the same number of Best Nine picks: 3B Chien-Wie Chen (.334/.434/.440, the leader in average), OF Sung-Hsien Yang (.320/.355/.440) and P Chao-Chi Sung (16-8, 2.13, 183 K, who won the pitching Triple Crown and was named CPBL MVP). Other key players were Wen-Bin Chen (.290/.381/.622, 26 HR), Chi-Feng Hung (.303/.392/.505), Chien-Fu Kuo Lee (5-3, 2.32, a league-leading 16 saves) and Hiroaki Nakayama (12-10, 2.80).

Under a new rule (which was later seemingly rescinded), a team that won both halves of the season got credited with a win for the Taiwan Series, meaning the Elephants started Game 1 officially ahead 1 game to 0. The Elephants won the opener, 6-1, in a matchup of Japanese import pitchers, Nakagomi beating Nakayama. Sheng-Hsien Feng drove in the winner. Wen-Bin Chen homered for the losers, Peng and Feng homering for the victors. The next day, the Elephants won 6-5 thanks to four Whales errors. Hurst got the win over Sung in a showdown of aces while Chih-Yuan Chen drove in the winner.

In game 3, October 15, the Elephants banged out 20 hits in a 9-5 romp. Chin-Li Wang got the win over Nakayama with Jen-Wen Hsiao saving it. Chi-Feng Hung and Tsung-Hui Tung homered for the Whales while Chih-Yuan Chen went deep in a winning cause. Tsai drive in the game-winning run.

Peng was named Taiwan Series MVP.

Source: Taiwan Baseball Wiki

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