News came out earlier today that Hyun-jin Ryu likely would not be ready for the beginning of the regular season. Now, it looks like the South Korean won’t be ready at least until May, that is if you believe the reports that have just been filed out of Los Angeles Dodgers spring training.
As Ryu looks to recover from that terrible shoulder injury that kept him out of the entire 2015 season, he doesn’t want to push himself back into the forefront too quickly and before he’s ready. Instead, they’re taking a cautious approach, and that approach has him looking at a May return.
From Dodgers beat writer Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) from the Orange County Register:
#Dodgers Hyun Jin Ryu acknowledges he won't be ready at start of season. Expects to be back "some time in May." Shooting for 20 GS 150 IP
— Bill Plunkett (@billplunkettocr) February 27, 2016
None of this changes anything. It always looked like Ryu was on pace for a 150 innings season or such. In fact, projection system PECOTA put him at 168 innings this season. There’s no likely way he was ever going to hit that projection, that’s for certain. But 150 innings does seem attainable.
To hit the 150 innings over 20 starts, Ryu would have to average 7.5 innings per start. Then again, that’s also unlikely. It’s more or less going to probably be 150 innings over 25 starts, if Ryu is able to even give it a go that much. In the grand scheme of things, maybe 130 innings is a likelier occurrence.
Either way, the team should be thrilled to at least have a timetable for Ryu’s return, even if it is May rather than in April when the season begins. The fact he’s even going to be able to get out there is a big boost to rotation that will feature Clayton Kershaw, Scott Kazmir, and Kenta Maeda in the top three spots.
When fully healthy, the Dodgers will be able to boast one of the better pitching staffs in the league so Ryu’s inclusion back into the fold will be heavily welcomed. Ryu will probably throw a rehab assignment or two in the minors prior to getting called up in May.