Former Toronto coach Charlie Monteyo often used the expression ‘vintage Ryu’ whenever Hyun-jin Ryu (36‧ Toronto), who was the ace of the team at the time, pitched well. He is praised for being the highest level. Perhaps because of that, the Toronto media also uses this word without fail whenever Ryu Hyun-jin throws well.
This word hadn’t been seen in a while. It was because Ryu Hyun-jin was away from the ground. Ryu Hyun-jin underwent elbow ligament reconstruction surgery (Tommy John surgery) in June 2022. In the end, he couldn’t overcome the pain in his elbow, which had been bothering him steadily lately. Considering that the rehabilitation period for Tommy John surgery is usually 14 to 18 months, it is not surprising that there are concerns that Ryu Hyun-jin’s Toronto career may have ended this way.
However, after his hard work, Ryu Hyun-jin, who recovered his health while reducing his rehabilitation period as much as possible, is now slowly showing his old self. Ryu Hyun-jin, who had an emotional comeback in the home game against Baltimore on the 2nd, scored 4 runs in 5 innings. His performance was not very good on the surface, but 3 out of 4 runs were concentrated in the 1st and 2nd innings when the tension was not enough, and in the 3rd and 5th innings, he cooked the Baltimore battering line with stable pitching.
And in the away game against Cleveland on the 8th, he proved that he was slowly getting back on the right track as he had no hits, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts and no runs in 4 innings. He was hit by a heavy hit in the 4th inning and did not make it to 5 innings, but pitched well, throwing just 52 balls in 4 innings. Most of all, it was encouraging that the sense of the changeup, which had not been heard well in his first game, was gradually revived.꽁머니
The knee bruise took everyone by surprise, but it was fortunate that it wasn’t a major injury anyway. Toronto coach John Schneider also expressed relief at Ryu Hyun-jin’s condition and praised the pitching. The local media and broadcasters did the same. He did not hold back his praise, saying that the look of ‘vintage style’ came out again.
‘Sportsnet’, a relay broadcasting company hosted by Toronto, said, “Ryu Hyun-jin seems to be looking for his own routine,” before Ryu Hyun-jin collapsed due to injury, and said, “Today, he was just like vintage Ryu.”
Ryu Hyun-jin’s return to normal was absolutely important in the situation of Toronto, which is running a bloody wild card race as well as pursuing 1st and 2nd places in the American League East Division for 3rd place. Despite his one-and-a-half year hiatus, he seems to be surprised and satisfied that he is finding his game after two games.
Ryu Hyun-jin’s shoulders became heavier. Toronto created a temporary six-man rotation by inserting Ryu Hyun-jin three times during the 17-game schedule. It is to give the five starting pitchers (Kevin Gaussman, Jose Berrios, Yusei Kikuchi, Chris Bassett, Alec Manoa) who have thrown a lot in the tight schedule so far a day of extra rest. However, with the Cubs game on the 14th (Korean time), this 17-game series is all over. There is no reason to stick with a 6-man rotation any longer. The roster could be wasted.
one fell out Right-hander Alec Manoa, who was a candidate for the American League Cy Young Award last year and fell this year due to extreme sluggishness. After adjusting the balance at the rookie facility and coming back up, it was hard to find a sense of stability, so Toronto pulled out the knife again. On the 11th, he was sent back to the minor leagues and made adjustments. When looking at the timing and Toronto rotation, there is also an analysis that it is closer to a long-term plan for next year and beyond than this year.
What is certain is that Ryu Hyun-jin will now digest the normal starting rotation. It is Ryu Hyun-jin who has to do the part of Manoa. His performance against the Chicago Cubs on the 14th also became important. Ryu Hyun-jin is a veteran among veterans who has to show a lot throughout his career, but verifying that he has the ability to overcome the aftermath of his elbow surgery is another matter.
Coming into his third start at the familiar Rogers Center, the Cubs aren’t such a bad memory for Hyun-Jin Ryu. In four career appearances, he went 1-1 with an earned run average of 3.00. However, all records are old. After he moved to Toronto, he never faced the Cubs. That means a long time has passed. So, the Cubs hitters I met at that time also have very few remaining players. It’s like facing a new team.
He is not a player who lives off his restraints, but it remains to be seen how much his restraint has recovered. Hyun-Jin Ryu at 90 mph and Hyun-Jin Ryu at 88 mph used to produce quite different results. The combination of the main weapon, the changeup and the curve, as well as how sharp the cutter has regained are also points to watch. Ryu Hyun-jin’s last major league win was against the Los Angeles Angels on May 27, 2022.