Late Life: How Chien-Ming Wang Made It Back To The Big Leagues (Pt 3 of 3)
This is part 3 of 3 in a series about the resurgence of Taiwanese MLB superstar, Chien-Ming Wang.
Chein-Ming Wang made the Royals 25-man roster out of camp.
That’s the day the crisis hit. The day the club announced the news I got a call from Chien’s agent, Alan Chang. “Chien’s shoulder started hurting after his last outing. He’s on a plane to Kansas City. He wants to know if you can fly there and help him.”
On opening day 2016, I sat in the left field bleachers and watched as the Royals received their 2015 World Series Championship Rings. Seeing Chien warm up, I could tell his shoulder was barking and it didn’t look good. When the game ended, I went back to my room at The Intercontinental Hotel and made a plan. I knew we would need to work on the down-low, away from the watchful eyes of club officials, and the throngs of Taiwanese media that had gathered to cover his return to MLB.
The Intercontinental is a luxurious and stout historical hotel. My room was pretty big, and the floors and walls seemed solid. So, I moved all the furniture to the sides of the room, propped the king-sized memory foam mattress against a wall and waited.
A few hours later Chien knocked on the door and we went to work. We began with some manual therapy on Chien’s shoulder. During spring training, he had gotten away from the arm care and mobility exercise routine we had shown him over the winter, so I directed him through a refresher on his program. We performed a series of throwing drills in the Durathro® Training sock and he threw baseballs to a makeshift target hanging from the mattress on the wall. He went through the familiar power-building drills with a medicine ball and some elastic bands I had stuffed into my suitcase. After 3 days of work, Chien’s shoulder was feeling better, so I packed my bags and headed back to Tampa.
The new Documentary Late Life: The Chien-Ming Wang Story, by Frank Chen contains footage of our training session at The Intercontinental. Here’s the trailer again.
Chien went on to log 53 innings in 36 appearances, posting a 6-0 record with a 4.56 ERA. In doing so, he inspired an inspired an entire nation of loving fans. Last November, Because of Chien’s success, the Chinese Professional Baseball League invited the FBR Staff to Taiwan for 5-day clinic to train their coaches and players. That relationship has continued to grow and we look forward to future visits with our new friends.
Chien-Ming Wang is one of the most humble and hardworking major leaguers with whom we’ve had the pleasure of working. He showed up every day motivated, driven, and eager to do whatever it took to get him back to the big leagues. He bought into the plan and completely trusted us throughout the process. He deserves all the credit for his resurgence, but the unsung heroes in this story are the staff members at The Florida Baseball Ranch® who worked with him on a day-to-day basis.
The resurrection of Chien-Ming Wang’s career took place in a town called Surprise, AZ. Many among the baseball establishment were indeed surprised.
But as for those of us who witnessed first hand the intensity, consistency, and quality of work to get there, we were not surprised at all … thrilled … but certainly not surprised.
From the Texas and Florida Baseball Ranch®,
Congratulations to our friend Chien-Ming Wang, his agent, Alan Chang, and filmmaker, Frank Chen.
If you’re interested in training at The Florida Baseball Ranch®, there are three ways to access out services: