Photo Credit: Charles Krupa / AP Photo
The Red Sox utility man has caught fire in the early parts of the 2018 season.
On the coldest game the Red Sox have played since 2003, there was a scorching hot shortstop batting 9th – Tzu-Wei Lin.
The two-way Taiwanese 24 year-old signed as an international free agent in 2012. He is 6-12 with two doubles since re-joining the major league team in 2018. Not only has Lin worked on his swing in order to hit more line drives and balls in the air, but he brings a great glove and an above average arm.
The Sox shortstop has had a slew of nicknames since making his major league debut in June of last year. “Tzunami”, “Lin-sanity”, and my personal favorite- “Two-Way Lin.”
Not only is Lin fun, exciting, and young, but he is RICH. The Red Sox gave an 18-year old Tzu-Wei Lin a $2 million signing bonus in 2012. The largest chunk of cash to a Taiwanese baseball player. Ever.
So, how close did the Red Sox come to missing out on Lin-sanity?
In 2010, he was a Yankee for a second.
The New York Yankees had an agreement with Lin on a contract that included a $350,000 signing bonus when he was just 16. He was eligible to sign at the time, but the Chinese Taipei Baseball Association threatened to ban him from playing and even coaching if he were to sign before completing high school. Lin went back to school, played a little more ball in Taiwan, and got $2 million just 2 years later.
Fast forward to 2018, and the 24 year-old is on the cusp of becoming a full time major leaguer.
The Red Sox have enjoyed his positional versatility, as well as his surprisingly strong bat in the order. If the younger Lin can continue to produce at a high rate, it would not be surprising to see him challenger other Sox players for a full-time role.
Lin-sanity is upon us. Let’s be glad we’re the ones enjoying it rather than the team just a few hours south of us.