Chien-Ming Wang had never participated in the World Baseball Classic in previous years, but then again but in years past he wasn’t a free agent searching for a contract.
It appears Wang is going to use the International stage to his benefit in an attempt to secure a major league contract, and he may be onto something if he keeps pitching like he did in game one of the tourney. Wang pitched a scoreless six innings enroute to a Chines Taipei victory over the Netherlands.
Wang has been a member of the major leagues since debuting in 2005 with the New York Yankees. Wang would experience greatness in 2006 having a career year, posting a 19-6 record for the Yankees.
Over the past few seasons Wang has battled injuries and demotions, pitching 15 games at four minor league levels last season as a member of the Washington Nationals. The 32 year old Wang is now in the twilight of his career knowing his best days are behind him as he attempts to impress at the Classic.
If Wang can prove to major league general managers he is healthy and on point during the tourney, there is no question he will secure a deal for a team experiencing injuries to their front five.
For now Wang is concentrating on leading Chinese Taipei out of the second round bracket of the tourney against admirable foes in the Netherlands, Cuba and Japan. If he secures a contract doing so, then all the better.
Clayton Richer covers the Toronto Blue Jays for Rant Sports. Follow and interact with him on Twitter at @MLBHotCorner.