PHOTO ESSAY/Baseball cheering without crowds
Taiwan's Chinese Professional Baseball League opened its 2020 season on April 12, with all games played behind closed doors to adhere to the government's social distancing guidelines due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.
Despite the empty stands, the four teams playing in the league found an online audience, broadcast in English, at a time when most professional sports events around the world have been disrupted or even scrapped altogether.
In addition to the games themselves, the teams' responses to the empty stands, including planting cardboard cutouts imitating fans, as well as the actions of their cheerleading squads, all caught attention, both at home and abroad.
The Taoyuan-based Rakuten Monkeys first came up with the idea of filling the empty stands with cardboard cutouts and mannequins to imitate the presence of fans.
The Monkeys allow fans to have customized cardboard cutouts displaying faces of their choice, inluding one of the fiancee of Ryan Carpenter, one of the players.
To increase interaction with fans watching at home, Tainan-based Uni-Lions began taking song requests performed by the head of its cheer leading squad in the middle of the fifth inning.
Sean, the mascot of Taichung-based CTBC Brothers, meanwhile, made a name for himself by doing quirky activities in the empty stand, such as steaming jerseys and advertising team merchandise.
To fill its home stadium in New Taipei, the Fubon Guardians asked fans to send in signboards they made themselves with cheering words, along with the team's own signboards thanking medical professionals in the fight against COVID-19.
(By Kay Liu)
- The final hours of Eslite's iconic Dunnan bookstoreAfter more than 30 years and a series of countdown events that started last year, the Eslite Bookstore chain is set to close its Dunnan outlet at midnight May 31.05/31/2020 03:23 PM
- Macau artist's Taipei shop exhibition opens to publicIn early May, Macau artist Kou Tak Leong (高德亮) held a solo exhibition in a newly opened shop -- Lightwell -- tucked away down an alley near Taipei's Zhongshan Metro Station.05/30/2020 06:45 PM
- Muslims celebrate annual Eid al-Fitr in TaipeiHundreds of Muslims in Taiwan, including migrant workers, gathered at the Taipei Travel Plaza, an open space by the Taipei Main Station, Sunday to celebrate the annual Eid al-Fitr ...05/24/2020 05:46 PM
Taiwan headline news06/06/2020 12:27 PM
Kaohsiung voters head to polls for mayoral recall06/06/2020 08:35 AM
CPC, Pertamina sign accord for joint petrochemical investment06/05/2020 11:50 PM
New SEF chair says Taiwan and China can work for people's interests06/05/2020 11:27 PM
Consumer prices down for 4th consecutive month in May06/05/2020 09:40 PM