It was only two scoreless innings, but for Hyun-Jin Ryu, that was a major milestone considering it’s almost half the amount of innings he’s thrown since 2014. Ryu struck out two batters in his two frames, allowing just a single to C.J. Cron.
But more important than any statistical achievements, Ryu says he feels great.
“I feel great right now,” Ryu said through an interpreter. “This is the first game, I don’t want to put too much meaning into it, I just want to be ready for the opening of the season.”
“Just like the first time here, I’m obviously competing for a spot,” Ryu said. “I have a few more games, and if I focus on each game at a time, I’m sure good results will follow.”
Perhaps just as important, as much as they want to deny it, is Ryu’s velocity. I’m skeptical of his (or anybody’s) ability to pitch sitting in the mid-80s, but due to Ryu’s command and deception, I figure maybe it’s possible in the high-80s.
Scout had Hyun-Jin Ryu's FB sitting 88-91 during two scoreless IP. Encouraging sign, though his ability to hold velocity remains unknown.
— Andy McCullough (@McCulloughTimes) March 11, 2017
Scout had #Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu's fastball at 86-88 mph, touching 91.
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) March 11, 2017
So he might be getting there.
The debate is whether he can hold velocity as the game wears on, which is what he struggled with in his aborted comeback attempt. But that test will come later, and he likely has that time, as I still think he starts in extended Spring Training, perhaps on the DL.
Regardless, for now at least, what’s he’s accomplished is positive enough. Glad to even potentially have him back.
“I’m just happy to be a baseball player again,” Thompson said. “Today I was jumpy, just anxious, and the results weren’t there. But I felt okay and I was just happy to get the first day over with.”
Thompson didn’t necessarily have a good day, as he alludes to, going 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. But truly the main thing is that he’s healthy, and he continues to show that on stuff like these catches.
Concluding things on a light note, here’s Kenta Maeda scaring the hell out of Will Ireton again.