THE PAST, PRESENT AND PROSPECT OF TAIWAN ABORIGINAL BASEBALL DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION

The first spark of baseball craze among Taiwan’s aboriginal peoples was ignited by Mr. Lin Guixing who built up the first-ever indigenous baseball team of twelve Amis youth at Sapat by River Siouguluan in Hualien County. It was ‘The Takasago Baseball Team’(高砂棒球隊). Ever since then, Taiwaneseaborigineshave developed a deep relationship with the island’s baseball and have become its most indispensable player.

Highly regarded by Hualian Harbor Subprefecture Magistrate EguchiRyōzaburō, the Takasago Baseball teamwas renamed ‘The Nōkō Baseball Team’(能高棒球隊)in 1923, and was routinely trained at Hua-Kang Shan Baseball Stadium. In 1925, The Nōkō Baseball Team flew to Japan and swept the country with five wins and one loss; it was the first time for Japan proper to witness the power of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball. The KanōBaseball Team from Jiayi Agriculture and Forestry Institute(嘉農棒球隊)that earned its fame in the hallowed Kōshien High School Baseball Tournament in 1931 became the pride of Taiwan’s baseball as well asa classic legend in the history of Japanese colonial-era Taiwanese baseball.

Later in 1968 came The Maple Leaf BaseballTeam(紅葉少棒隊), which surprised the entire nation by its feats and incited the Taiwanese government to start junior baseball training program. The all-star Golden Dragon Baseball Team(金龍少棒隊)was established in 1969 and started to shineon the international stage.In 1974,Hualian RSEA Baseball Team(榮工少棒隊)was formed; in 1983 Taiwan returned to play at international baseball tournaments; in 1984 and 1994 Taiwanese teams won two medals at Baseball Demonstrations at the Olympics; and in the 1990s,not only did the Chinese Professional Baseball League come into existence, but excellent players including Kuo Yuan-chin and Chen Yi-Hsinwho played at Nippon National Baseball also returned with multiple honors. This history is a well-recognized testimony to aboriginal talent, effort and contribution to Taiwanese baseball; aboriginal presence allows Taiwanese baseball to bloom and broadens the field it plays.

Thinking of such a glorious past and looking forward to a brighter future, we thereby set up ‘Taiwan Aboriginal Baseball Development Association’in order to bring together all forces that intend to help aboriginal baseball grow. We sincerely hope none of us will reserve our efforts to the selves alone, but will help to promote the development of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball affairs in all-level agencies and to train aboriginal baseball talents from the next generation. God has blessed us, the aboriginal peoples, with the gift of baseball. It is a blessing from God, so it should not be kept to any individual. All of us need to make a good use of our wisdom in a collective manner. From today onwards, let us all move forward together, hand in hand, and walk into the bright future for Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.

Sincerely by All Committee Members of TABDA

Visions and Missions of TABDA

Pass on the physical culture that connects aboriginal peoples through blood and sweat. Present multiculturalism and the harmonious relationshipbetween Taiwan’s different ethnic groups to the national and the international audience.

1. Promote the development and exchange of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.
2. Conduct tournaments and training programs of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.
3. Conduct profession advancement events for coaches, umpires and players of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.
4. Protect the rights of personnel involved in Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.
5. Conduct regular and irregular investigation, collection, study and publication of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball.
6. Other issues regarding the rights and duties of Taiwanese aboriginal baseball players.

Translated by YeddaPalemeq (ILRDC Chief Executive)