Dodgers 2015 Player Review: Chin-Hui Tsao
Dodgers 2015 Player Review: Chin-hui Tsao
Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The 2015 season was a breakout year for some on the Los Angeles Dodgers roster and for others it was about redemption. Entering last season, Chin-Hui Tsao, the first Taiwanese player in Major League Baseball history, last appeared in an MLB game on June 14, 2007.

He received another opportunity from the Dodgers, the same team that signed him in January 2007. Tsao’s eight-year hiatus involved multiple attempted comebacks and experiments in the Chinese Professional Baseball League.

At the time 33 years old, Tsao signed a Minor League contract that included an invitation to Spring Training with the Dodgers in January 2015. The right-handed pitcher began the season with Double-A Tulsa, then was promoted to Triple-A Oklahoma City.

Tsao appeared in four games with the Drillers, going 0-1 with two saves, 7.20 ERA and 1.20 WHIP. In 30 games with OKC, Tsao went 2-1 with seven saves, a 3.00 ERA, 1.08 WHIP, 42 strikeouts and 11 walks.

Tsao’s improbably comeback added another layer when he was called up by the Dodgers on July 8, 2015. Through his first four outings, Tsao allowed three runs (two earned) on eight hits, while striking out seven batters in 6.1 innings.

He then struggled in a blowout loss to the New York Mets, allowing six runs on seven hits in just two-thirds of an inning. The Dodgers optioned Tsao back to Triple-A Oklahoma City following the game, where he remained for the rest of the season.

2015 Highlight

After being banned by the Chinese Professional Baseball League over alleged game fixing, the road back to the Majors was certainly an eventful one. Tsao’s perseverance paid off on July 10, 2015, the date of his first appearance.

Tsao entered in the seventh inning with the Dodgers trailing the Milwaukee Brewers, 2-0, and worked around two base hits to throw a scoreless inning of relief; he was aided in part by Yasmani Grandal catching Jean Segura stealing.

The Dodgers rallied for three runs in the bottom of the seventh and came away with a victory. As a result, Tsao was credited with his first Major-League win since 2005 when he was with the Colorado Rockies.

2016 Outlook

Tsao entered the offseason as a free agent, but re-signed with the Dodgers on a Minor-League contract in February.

His role should remain the same as it was last season — a reliever with the OKC Dodgers who may be called up at some point throughout the year.