The MRI results came back for Blue Jays left-hander Hyun Jin Ryu, and the diagnosis is alarming. He has suffered a forearm strain and elbow inflammation, manager Charlie Montoyo told reporters (including Keegan Matheson of MLB.com).
Toronto didn’t provide much else on Ryu’s timetable. Montoyo said he’d be out “multiple weeks,” and he’s slated to undergo further testing to determine the severity of the issue. A forearm strain diagnosis is always alarming given how often that terminology is a precursor to Tommy John surgery, but there’s no indication that’s on the table at this time.
Ryu is no stranger to health concerns, having spent time on the injured list in every full season — excluding the shortened 2020 schedule — since 2013. He’s dealt with a litany of issues, but the most alarming was a combination of shoulder surgery and elbow tendinitis that cost him virtually all of the 2015-16 seasons. Ryu’s more recent injuries were mostly lower-half related, but he hit the IL earlier this year on account of forearm inflammation.
The 35-year-old returned from that bout of inflammation after a few weeks, but he made just four starts before again dealing with discomfort. Ryu suggested that his latest issue felt similar to the early-season problem, and the Jays placed him on the 15-day IL yesterday.
Ryu is in the third season of a four-year contract. He was exceptional in 2020, posting a 2.69 ERA with strong peripherals through 67 innings. While he made 31 starts and soaked up 167 frames last year, he wasn’t as effective on a rate basis. Ryu posted a 4.37 mark, continuing to demonstrate strong control and ground-ball numbers but watching his strikeout percentage fall from 26.2% to 20.4%. That rate has dropped to a well below-average 14.2% this season, while Ryu’s ERA has spiked to 5.33 over six outings.
It remains to be seen when Ryu might be able to reclaim his rotation spot in Toronto. In the interim, swingman Ross Stripling will step into the starting five alongside Alek Manoah, Kevin Gausman, José Berríos and Yusei Kikuchi. That’s still a strong group, particularly with Manoah and Gausman performing brilliantly. Stripling has started five of his 13 outings this season, posting a 4.22 ERA with an excellent 54.5% ground-ball percentage.
For Love of the Game
Hello Mr. Ryu. I’m John, Tommy John.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
Was a big risk signing for Toronto accompanied by big money. I don’t know, Blue Jay fans, has it been worth it? Management knew his health was shaky.
I believe they are well under the LT threshold so by the time they want, if they want, to extend their young stars this money should be gone.
I don’t think this is that big of a deal to the Jays outside of losing a decent pitcher (when he’s on). You have to make up those innings somewhere.
This was exactly why LAD didn’t make an effort to retain him beyond 2019 when he accepted the QO. Too much risk of another major injury that would shelve him for a long period. He’s awesome when healthy, though.
In fairness we can’t say why the Dodgers passed on signing him back. He came to the Dodgers in the first place with an “injury history” and it didn’t stop them then. All we can really say is they felt they had better options at the time.
The Dodgers employ Andrew Heaney, David Price, and Clayton Kershaw so injury risk might not have been the deciding factor.
Hey Mule miss you at JITH.
@ curly- 100% it was. it showed the rest of baseball the jays wanted to compete. that’s probably why springer signed and probably why berrios and gausman did as well. gotta remember guys probably aren’t falling over themselves to play in toronto.
you could say that signing was a catalyst for every big signing they make going fwd so, despite the injury concerns they still got some pretty good work out of him and the rest is upside.
yeah imo a good signing.
Guy have them a great 2020 but the rest of that contract is a disaster
A three-alarm injury.
We will next see him in 2024
When he’s 37? Have to say probably not. If he needs TJ he’s more likely to retire.
He’ll rehab that’s over 30mil on the line if he doesn’t.
What most regular folks don’t understand is that once there are so many zero’s in your bank account, it’s just a numbers game. The $30MM really isn’t all that important for these multi-millionaire athletes. It’s the need to compete that drives them. And at his age that need to compete is often on the downhill slope.
It’s over Johnny.
Just get him healthy for the stretch run.
I think they should rest him for a few weeks then just use him out of the pen when he comes back. Stripling and Ryu can switch roles. Just try to slowly get as many innings as you can out of his arm before it falls off. Jays knew this was what they were getting into when they signed Ryu but were hoping for the best. If Ryu was not an injury risk when he signed that deal then he wouldn’t have been available for the Jays to sign in the first place and he would have made much more money.
JA Happ missed his easy money opening…
A retirement announcement by anyone is literally not worth the ink it’s written with. Nothing stops Happ or anybody for that matter from un-retiring if the player and the team really want to have another go at it. And the Jays had one of the longest-before-unretirement pitcher in MLB history.
First part of contract he was ok past part not so much. Buts its not an albatross contract and end after 2023. Not a big deal. If he can come back earlier thats bonus.
Looks like they bought an empty treasure box from Dodgers.
Not quite. One could argue it’s more like a near-expiry lure. Ryu’s contract was basically the bat signal to tell top athletes that they are willing and able to overcome the stigma and play at the top shelf of free agency. Note all the talents they’ve signed since then.
If Ryu does need TJ and is out until basically next July or August…. I wonder if the Jays could re-structure a buyout this year?
Pay him $38M this year and next year he becomes a free agent.
He’s going to get his money anyway… so might as well load the contract this year and free up cap space next season.
Is that even allowed under the CBA?
Better signing than Tanner Roark? Pretty sure it was around the same time.