Sheng Ping Cheng leads Chinese Taipei to bronze medal

Sheng Ping Cheng leads Chinese Taipei to bronze medal
The second baseman batted in all the runs. Chen Hsun Lee allowed a run on one hit in the first, then limited Mexico to a couple of hits. Hsin Yen Chuang pitched two perfect innings to close the game.

Second baseman Sheng Ping Chen led Chinese Taipei to their 3-1 win over Mexico to earn the bronze medal on Sunday at the IV WBSC U-23 Baseball World Cup.

Chinese Taipei's bronze medal is their first-ever U-23 Baseball World Cup medal, following their first and only U-21 Baseball World Cup gold medal in 2014 and continues a trend of medalling in each WBSC baseball tournament this year - U-12 Baseball World Cup (bronze), U-15 Baseball World Cup (bronze) and U-18 Baseball World Cup (silver).

For Mexico, fourth place matched their 2016 result having finished first and second in 2018 and 2021 respectively. But it was their best result of this year, following a sixth place result in the U-12 Baseball World Cup, seventh at the U-15 Baseball World Cup and sixth at the U-18 Baseball World Cup.

After Mexico scored on one hit in the bottom of the first, Chinese Taipei pitchers dominated. Starter Chen Hsun Lee played in five innings, allowing only two hits, while reliever Hsin Yen Chuang pitched two perfect innings, getting three strikes three of the final six outs.

Chen was the MVP of the game, batting in three runs on a double in the second and a two-strike single in the third.

"I want to thank the coaches. Even though I wasn't in good condition in the previous games, they still trusted me. There were runners on base when I stepped to the box and I grabbed the chance. We showcased teamwork. This victory belongs to every one of us," said Chen after the game.

"Whenever you play on home turf, all the coaches and players are under pressure, which is understandable, but I told them to relax before each game. Before the bronze medal game, I told them to enjoy the moment since this was the last game," manager Cheng Hsun Hsieh commented.

"I didn't cry. I was just moved and touched by the outcome," said Hsieh on a final note.


Chinese Taipei -Mexico3-1BOX SCORE

You can relive all the action as it happened through our live blog.

Chinese Taipei-Mexico 3-1

Mexico earned a quick lead. Angel Camacho singled on the fifth pitch of the game (3-1), reached third on two consecutive bunts and scored on a wild pitch.

Sheng Ping Cheng doubled in the top of the second and scored Song En Tseng from second.

Sheng Ping Chen did it again in the top of the third. He got to reliever Erubiel Armenta with a two-strike, two-out and two-RBI single to center field giving Chinese Taipei their first lead.

Chinese Taipei missed a scoring opportunity in the top of the fourth. Hsiang Chang became the third out at home on a throw by first baseman Christopher Escarrega to catcher Brandon Valenzuela.

Hsin Yen Chuang pitched two perfect innings to save the win.