Watch: Taiwan’s baseball teams engage in brawl, ignore social distancing

By: Sports Desk |

Updated: April 20, 2020 9:37:00 pm

A brawl ensues between Rakuten Monkeys and Fubon Guardians. (Screengrab)

Although the global pandemic has seen almost all sports go back into their burrow, Taiwan has managed to keep its baseball league alive, along with Belarus and Turkmenistan’s football leagues. But on Sunday, things went south when social distancing went out of the window after a game descended into an on-field brawl.

Taiwan has so far managed to limit the spread of the virus to just 422 confirmed cases and six deaths. Owing to its success, the country has one of the few professional sports leagues still operating, but a brawl in a match between Rakuten Monkeys against Fubon Guardians tainted the domestic baseball league.

After the Fubon pitcher hit in-fielder Kuo Yen-wen in the hip for the fourth time with an inside ball, the brawl erupted inside a spectator-less stadium. “There are some tempers exploding out there right now,” a commentator said on Eleven Sports Taiwan.

“For our international viewers, you need to understand that this never really happens in the CPBL. It’s usually a very conservative league. They don’t even argue balls or strikes or outs very often,” he added.

Rakuten recently made the headlines after they unveiled a troupe of robots to bang drums and mannequins to stand in for real fans. Although baseball leagues in South Korea and Japan are targeting restarts towards the end of May, the US Major League Baseball (MLB) may cancel the 2020 season altogether.

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