The Orioles today officially announced their three-year deal with Taiwanese left-hander Wei-Yin Chen.
Chen, whose deal included a club option for 2015, will wear No. 16. The 26-year-old went 36-30 with a 2.48 ERA in 117 games over the past four season with the Chunichi Dragons in the Central League of Nippon Professional Baseball.
“Chen works off of a 92-94 mile per hour fastball and he uses a hard, slurve-like breaking ball as an out-pitch,” Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said in a news release.”He has exceptional command, and we like the quality of his pitches to help our team.”
Said Chen: “I am extremely excited about this opportunity to challenge the major leagues and begin the next chapter of my professional baseball career. I am thankful for the support of my family, my fans, the Chunichi Dragons and Baltimore Orioles organizations, which allowed me to continue to pursue my dream. I will do my best to help the Orioles to the championship.”
Chen will be introduced during a news conference in Taipei, Taiwan, on Jan. 16 at 11 a.m. (Taiwan time) at the Sherwood Taipei Hotel. The Orioles’ new executive director of international baseball, Ray Poitevint, will represent the club.
Outfielder Kyle Hudson has been designated for assignment to make room for Chen on the 40-man roster. Hudson, 25, batted .143 in 14 games for the O’s in 2011.