‘Four runs in five innings’ healthy ‘Korean Monster’…hopes + challenges remain for big league return

The ‘Korean Monster’ Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto Blue Jays) completed his first big league appearance in 426 days against the Baltimore Orioles, the team with the best record in the American League. It was a comeback that was a mixed bag.

Ryu threw 80 pitches over five innings in his first start for the 2023 Major League Baseball (MLB) World Series against Baltimore at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on Feb. 2. He threw 33 fastballs, followed by 22 changeups and 20 curves. He had five cut fastballs. The final line was nine hits (one homer), one walk, three strikeouts, and four runs.토토사이트

It’s been exactly one year and two months since Ryu made a big league start against the Chicago White Sox on June 2 last year. However, he was unable to avoid his first loss of the season as the team fell to a 3-13 defeat.

Ryu struggled in the first and second innings as he was unable to get his velocity up, but by the third inning, his fastball was up to 91 mph (about 146 kilometers). As he did, his changeup and curveball became more effective. The Baltimore batters, who hadn’t missed a pitch in the first inning, were unable to find their groove as Ryu’s command improved.

His crisis management skills also stood out. In the top of the fifth inning, a hit and a walk put runners on first and second, but Ryu induced a grounder to Austin Hayes with a cut fastball and then completed a shortstop-second baseman-first baseman double play to end the inning without a run. The Toronto bench, which had been preparing to go to the bullpen in the fifth inning, also took a breather.

It was especially encouraging to see him get through his first outing since undergoing elbow ligament splicing surgery without any major setbacks. Toronto manager John Schneider didn’t set a pitch count limit, and Ryu threw 80 pitches until the top of the sixth inning. He proved that he can be a regular part of the starting rotation.

However, it was the long ball that got him in trouble. The first run in the first inning came on back-to-back doubles by Tablesetter, as did the solo shot to leadoff hitter Gunner Henderson in the top of the sixth.

In total, Ryu had four hits on the day, including one home run. Given how well the Baltimore offense has been hitting this season, the lack of long balls allowed is definitely something that needs to be addressed. Also, getting out of the first inning will be one of the things Ryu needs to work on in his second start, as his pitches were different around the third inning.

If all goes according to plan, Ryu will start the first game of the series against the Cleveland Cavaliers on April 8. He hasn’t had much of a workload and has plenty of time to rest. It will be interesting to see if he can get his first win in his second start.