A few days ago, there was a video that showed Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Hyun-jin Ryu was able to finally throw off of a pitching mound to a catcher who was squatted down 60-feet-6 inches away. Everything looked like Ryu was on track to make some major progress this spring so he could start the year.
Beyond that, on that very same day, team president and chief executive officer Stan Kasten said that he believed “all [injured] players are on track.” Some players have different timelines and such that they’re on track for, and apparently Ryu is no different. But now more news was learned today.
From Andy McCullough, who covers the Los Angeles Dodgers for the Los Angeles Times:
Hyun-Jin Ryu is about two weeks behind the rest of the pitchers right now, Dave Roberts said.
— Andy McCullough (@McCulloughTimes) February 22, 2016
Now, on the surface, this might scare you because you’ll get this feeling that (a) Kasten was lying to everyone and/or (b) that Ryu has suffered a setback. However, it’s not as simple as that. Ryu was just on a different timetable and track than everyone else as they entered camp.
Remember, this is a pitcher who had to miss all of 2015 because of shoulder surgery on his throwing shoulder. He’s not going to come immediately back on the first day of camp and be raring to go. It takes time. How much time? Well, we’ll see. As for now, manager Dave Roberts has said that he’s two weeks behind the others.
This doesn’t mean that Ryu won’t be ready for Opening Day or even opening month, it just means that he’s going to take a little time to get there and get right. You don’t want him rushing back and getting back on the mound for a high workload, or even a moderate workload, before he’s able to do so.
Ryu will be pitching this season, so take that to the bank. The good thing to take away from all of this is that no one sounds overly concerned, and they’re all happy with the way that he’s progressing. Ryu will be a vital part of the 2016 club, that’s for certain.