Hyun-jin Ryu loses his first start in 426 days… He gave up four runs but lasted five innings.

When Ryu Hyun-jin (Toronto Blue Jays) underwent elbow ligament reconstruction surgery last June at the age of 35, many believed his baseball career had gone downhill. Having already undergone two major surgeries in 2015 and 2016, one as a high schooler and the other in the MLB, it seemed unlikely that he would be able to return to form after more than a year of rehabilitation. But Ryu, who has bounced back from multiple injuries, is back and healthy this time around. He made his first MLB start in 426 days on Feb. 2 against the Baltimore Orioles, throwing 80 pitches in a complete game.

The pitching wasn’t great. He gave up back-to-back doubles to the first two batters in the first inning. In the sixth inning, he gave up a solo home run to Gunner Henderson, their leadoff hitter. In five innings, he gave up four runs on nine hits (one home run) and one walk. He struggled with his changeup in particular, giving up a lot of balls up the middle.

His fastball velocity wasn’t as high as it was before the injury. His fastball topped out at 91 miles per hour (146 km/h) and averaged 89 miles per hour (143 km/h). “It remains to be seen how much further his velocity can go,” said Sports Illustrated. His curveball, on the other hand, was a force. Ryu threw 20 curveballs in the right places at the right time to keep hitters off-balance.

He took the loss as the Blue Jays fell 3-13. It was a disappointing outcome, but Ryu emphasized the significance of his return. “Just coming back and throwing five innings, I’m very happy with that. I think my velocity will go up another mile or two,” he said. “Ryu’s comeback was a triumph of perseverance,” said the Toronto Sun, a local newspaper, “and we’ll have to wait until he makes two or three more appearances to make a proper assessment.”

The return of the “Korean Monster” is a big boost for the Blue Jays as they look toward fall baseball. The Blue Jays are currently in third place (59-49) in the American League Wild Card standings. In MLB, the first-place teams in each division go directly to the postseason, while the rest of the league is ranked by winning percentage, with the top three teams earning a wild-card berth. “Ryu’s return could be a big boost for the Blue Jays, who haven’t made any significant additions in the trade market,” MLB.com wrote.바카라

Ryu is in the final season of his contract after joining the Blue Jays from the Los Angeles Dodgers for four years and $80 million in 2020. In his first year with the Blue Jays, he went 5-2 with a 2.69 ERA and finished third in the Cy Young Award voting, but his ERA skyrocketed to 4.37 in 2021, and last year he was sidelined for more than a year after appearing in six games and going on the operating table. He’ll need to perform well the rest of the season if he hopes to continue his MLB career. Ryu’s next start is on Aug. 8 against the Cleveland Indians. “He’s gotten better and better with each game,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said, “and everyone on the team is happy to have him back.”

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