Dodgers don’t expect Hyun-Jin Ryu to pitch again in 2016
The words from Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts did not exactly classify as a revelation. Hyun-Jin Ryu has not picked up a baseball since the middle of July, and the Dodgers have not provided many updates about his progress. But on Thursday, Roberts confirmed the obvious: Ryu is not expected to pitch for the team again this season.
Ryu is currently in “rehab mode,” Roberts said. He would need to restart a throwing program in the near future in order to contribute this year, and a throwing program does not appear on his horizon.
“I’m just doing the math,” Roberts said before Thursday’s series finale against the Phillies. “I don’t see it happening.”
After missing last season because of surgery on his left labrum, Ryu reported discomfort in his left elbow following a bullpen session shortly before the start of the second half of the season. Ryu made one appearance for the Dodgers in 2016, giving up six runs and failing to complete the fifth inning against San Diego on July 7.
In that outing, Ryu showed an inability to retain fastball velocity. In the days afterward, he showed an inability to recover from the soreness he experienced. The Dodgers placed him on the disabled list on July 19.
The team owes Ryu $15.7 million through 2018. He posted a 3.17 earned-run average in 56 starts across 2013 and 2014, but his struggles to recover from shoulder surgery has created doubts about his future contributions to the Dodgers.
Spot starter on Sunday?
The Dodgers are considered using a spot starter on Sunday in Cincinnati to provide some extra rest for Kenta Maeda and Scott Kazmir, the two workhorses of the rotation. The most likely candidate would be Julio Urias, but he also must serve as an emergency option in case Bud Norris’ back flares up Friday or in case Brett Anderson’s wrist gives him trouble Saturday.
Roberts was able to cross out at least one theoretical candidate.
“We’ve got options,” he said. “We’ve got in-house options. Someone is going to take the mound on Sunday in a Dodger uniform. And it won’t be me.”
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