Down to the final bullpen pitch…finally, Ryu Hyun-jin returns
Finally, the “monster” is back.
Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto Blue Jays) is on the countdown to his return. He’s even completed his final rehearsal. On Tuesday, he threw his final bullpen session at the Rogers Centre in Toronto. He worked with starting catcher Danny Jansen. Toronto manager John Schneider and the rest of the coaching staff were on hand to watch. The significance. According to Canadian outlet TSN, Schneider called it “Ryu’s best pitch,” and gave him a thumbs-up for his “command and feel for the game.”
He’s taking his comeback step by step. Ryu underwent elbow ligament reconstruction (Tommy John surgery) last June. He spent more than a year rehabbing. He started pitching in the bullpen in May after playing catch. He started pitching live in mid-June and has been making rehabilitation appearances in the minor leagues since the beginning of the month. He topped out at 90.8 mph (146.1 km/h) in a Triple-A game (6 innings, 85 pitches) on April 22. After warming up, Ryu rejoined the Toronto roster on Sept. 25, making his first trip to Dodger Stadium in a long time.
He will return to action on April 2 against the Baltimore Orioles. He will take the mound as a starter. It will be about a year and two months. Ryu’s last big league start was on June 2 last year against the Chicago White Sox. “As a starting pitcher, I want to create a platform for my team to win,” Ryu said in an interview with local media after throwing out of the bullpen that day. “The most important thing in my rehabilitation process was to protect myself from a lot of setbacks, and I think I did a pretty good job.”안전놀이터
Toronto is buzzing. Ryu’s presence hasn’t just been on the mound. He has played a central role as a clubhouse leader. “After nine years in the big leagues, Ryu is tasked with guiding the younger players on and off the field,” said MLB.com, “more like an older brother than a traditional leader. More than a mentor.” In fact, his teammates use the Korean word “hyung” to describe him. “He teaches me a lot of things,” said Alec Manoa. When I traveled to Dunedin, Florida, in June to make pitching adjustments, he took me to dinner and told me a lot of stories.”