With the Los Angeles Dodgers set to open the 2014 season in Australia, which correlated with a truncated spring training and long flights, it raised concerns for some. Valid or not, the sentiment that the trip could lead to injury was reinforced when the Dodgers landed back in the U.S. and Clayton Kershaw was placed on the disabled list shortly after.
On Friday, the Dodgers placed Hyun-Jin Ryu, who also started in the Opening Series, on the DL with shoulder inflammation. Though some may point to starting in Australia as the reason both Kershaw and Ryu landed on the DL, the South Korean native doesn’t believe that to be the case, according to Bill Plunkett of the OC Register:
I’m not sure. I can’t say that was the reason,” Ryu said through his interpreter. “It seems to be a coincidence to me. Injuries happen all the time. We’re all responsible for our own bodies.”
While Ryu may not blame his start in Australia for the inflammation, it’s difficult to examine his early-season workload and not question whether it played a role. The left-hander is tied for the league lead with seven starts and including the Opening Series, he made three starts that the team said they were concerned using Kershaw for.
In Ryu’s second start, which came in the Dodgers’ U.S. opener, Ryu told Mattingly he felt fatigued after the seventh inning and suggested he be lifted from the game.
While the left-hander had his usual amount of rest between the three stats, throughout his career Ryu has fared much better on five days’ rest. In such cases, Ryu has a lifetime 8-1 record with a 1.90 ERA. On four days’ rest, Ryu is 5-6 with a 4.09 ERA.
The Dodgers don’t believe the injury is serious and according to Ryu, it’s similar to inflammation he dealt with in 2011, which he was able to fully recover from after resting for 10 days.
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