Hyun-jin Ryu’s Previous Shoulder Injury

Yesterday, after we learned that Hyun-jin Ryu was sent to the disabled list due to an inflamed shoulder, there was a momentary panic. Shoulder injuries for pitchers are never good, and shoulders are a lot more difficult to fix than elbows. However, the team has stated that the injury is minor. Further comfort came from the fact that this is not Ryu’s first time dealing with shoulder inflammation. Via Ken Gurnick:

Ryu said he experienced the same discomfort in the middle of his shoulder blade while pitching in Korea in 2011, and he was “back on track” in 10 days. He said it already feels better than it did earlier in the week.

While that statement is comforting (but not unlike what we heard when Clayton Kershaw first hit the disabled list), we can check the accuracy thanks to these game logs. Ryu’s initial shoulder issue occurred on June 28, 2011. Here is the rest of his 2011 season:

Date IP K R ER
6/28/2011 5 5 1 1
7/17/2011 1/3 1 0 0
7/30/2011 2/3 0 0 0
7/31/2011 1 1 0 0
8/2/2011 1/3 0 3 3
9/2/2011 1-1/3 1 0 0
9/8/2011 6 6 1 0
9/17/2011 7 6 2 0
9/28/2011 6 3 2 2

The first thing to notice: The injury forced him to sit out for 19 days, not 10. Maybe he meant 10 in addition to his normal rest? This isn’t a big deal, since Ryu will be on DL for 15 days either way. The bigger issue is that it doesn’t look like Ryu returned at full strength. He returned in the bullpen. Between the injury on June 28th and his start on September 8th, Ryu only pitched 3-2/3 relief innings. He did not pitch at all between August 2nd and September 2nd after allowing three runs and getting one out.

While we can’t be 100% sure that Ryu’s shoulder was the only cause of the extra time off and the reduced workload, it isn’t a great sign. Dan of MyKBO states that he believes that the second period of time off was for additional rest and to fully recover from the shoulder issue.

If there’s any silver lining in these game logs, it’s that Ryu returned for three good starts at the end of the season. His ERA in the 22-2/3 post-injury innings was 1.99 (compared to 3.73 in 101-1/3 pre-injury innings), but his K/9 rate dropped from 9.68 pre-injury to 7.15 post-injury. Unfortunately, we don’t know what happened to his velocity. The post-injury sample is small, but at least he didn’t unravel.

The shoulder injury Ryu experienced in 2011 hasn’t really impacted him long-term, as we have been lucky enough to see so far. But, unfortunately, the impact wasn’t as minor as previously stated.

Thanks to Dan from MyKBO for providing the game logs and answering my questions about Ryu. Go follow him on twitter if you want to see bat flips and fun stuff from Korean baseball, including what Josh Bell is up to these days.


About

Daniel Brim grew up in the Los Angeles area and remains a Dodger fan despite currently residing in Salem, MA. As an engineer, he’s fascinated by the math and science behind the game of baseball, which probably explains a lot. He started “Blog To The Score” in late 2013 to dig deeper into the numbers behind the Dodgers. In its brief lifespan, it gained attention from local and national media. You can find him spending too much time in the comments section or on Twitter.


367 comments
DBrim
DBrim moderator

Mariners attempting to out-Astro the Astros.

efb
efb

I love Dan from MyKBO

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Astros really Astroing.

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Mariners manager just got kicked out for a reason that I cannot comprehend. Three mariners walked in a row immediately before he got kicked out.

P_F_P
P_F_P

It would be pretty cool to see ZLee get his first start on Sunday.

ryus_hadouken
ryus_hadouken

Q: What grade would you all give Tim Wallach (new bench coach) and Lorenzo Bundy (third base coach) thus far? 

DBrim
DBrim moderator

@capnsparrow  Did it have to be killed at the end of the race?

DBrim
DBrim moderator

I guess he was mad about stalling tactics.

DBrim
DBrim moderator

@P_F_P  He started yesterday, so he'd be on one day's rest.

Disgruntled Goat
Disgruntled Goat moderator

@DBrim  finally read about that whole thing, i had intentionally remained ignorant for a long time. what a fucking fuck that guy is. 

P_F_P
P_F_P

@DBrim  Still no announcement? Oh well at least the game's not tomorrow or anything

ryus_hadouken
ryus_hadouken

@DBrim I've deduced Third base coach give a green light, yellow ligt, or red light. Bench coach does something (tbh, I'd been hoping someone else could fill me in on what the latter does). 

DBrim
DBrim moderator

@LA_Woman @DBrim @P_F_P  It's going to be Dominguez, probably. Might as well keep him up as long as possible.

P_F_P
P_F_P

@DBrim @P_F_P  Pertinent, relevant information relating to the business they are employed with?