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Kuo on Taiwan's preliminary roster for Asian Games baseball tourney

2010/08/11 22:33:10

Taipei, Aug. 11 (CNA) Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star pitcher KuoHung-chih has been listed Taiwan's preliminary 45-man roster for theAsian Games, which was made public by Taiwan's baseball associationWednesday.

The left-hander headlined a roster dominated by playersperforming in the United States at the major league and minor leaguelevels.

The Chinese Taipei Baseball Association (CTBA) is still unsure,however, if Kuo will be able to join the team in Guangzhou, China inNovember.

It will not be easy for the Dodgers to make Kuo available for thetournament because of his injury-prone past, said national teammanager Yeh Chih-hsien.

The 29-year-old Kuo is enjoying the best season of his six-yearMajor League Baseball career. As the Dodgers' main set-up man, he hasa 3-1 record with three saves and a 1.41 ERA in 36 appearances.

The possibility of being rejected by the Dodgers or other clubsto release Taiwanese players for the Asian Games has not stopped theCTBA from trying to put together a strong roster.

"We're still planning to recruit the best players available forthe Asian Games, " Yeh said.

Twenty of the 45 players on the roster are currently playing inforeign leagues. Brother Elephants slugger Peng Cheng-min is among 18players from the Taiwan's professional league, the ChineseProfessional Baseball League, while seven are amateurs.

Taiwan's recruiting strategy reflects its determination to defendits Asian Games title. It has pursued every Taiwanese playerperforming at a Class A-Advanced League level or higher, with theexceptions of Washington Nationals pitcher Wang Chien-ming and oneother minor leaguer.

The CTBA is scheduled to name its 24-player roster to participatein the 2010 Intercontinental Cup tournament, which will be played inTaiwan in October, before deciding the final roster for the AsianGames.

Taiwan won its first baseball gold at the Asian games in Doha,Qatar in 2006.

(By Chris Wang)