“104km dazzling curveball…Ryu is different from normal pitchers, he checks how slow it is” US pitching experts are also impressed

Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto Blue Jays) revived with a slow ball in the era of the redemption revolution. Ryu Hyun-jin is proving that a pitcher’s life is not speed, but accurate control and timing. 

Ryu Hyun-jin started in the 2023 major league home game against the Cleveland Guardians held at the Rogers Center in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on the 27th (Korean time)바카라, 5 innings, 4 hits (2 home runs), 5 strikeouts, 3 runs (2 earned). Toronto won 8-3. 

He was hit with two solo home runs by Jose Ramirez in the 1st inning and Tyler Freeman in the 5th inning, giving up 2 runs, but effectively pitched 60 pitches until the 5th inning. He was disappointed that he was demolished with no bases loaded in the 6th inning and consecutive errors, but recorded his first no-hit walk of the season with 70 pitches. 

Ryu Hyun-jin, who won his third win (one loss) of the season by winning three games in a row, posted an ERA of 2.25. After returning 14 months after Tommy John surgery last year, he won 3 wins in 5 games and announced a revival with an average ERA of 2 points. 

“The 104km dazzling curve, Ryu Hyun-jin’s speed check is fun” Pitching experts also admired

Ryu Hyun-jin’s total number of pitches that day was 70, with 49 strikes and 21 balls. He evenly mixed four-seam fastballs (29), change-up (19), curveball (13), and cutter (9) in a stable command with a strike rate of 70%. He used all four pitches effectively enough to use them as deciding pitches to strike out. 

The four-seam fastball velocity was not fast, with a maximum of 90.8 miles (146.1 km) and an average of 88.2 miles (141.9 km), but a slow changeup and a slower curve stole the timing of hitters. A total of 8 with 4 changeups and 4 missed swings from curves. In particular, the curve was only the lowest 64.6 miles (104.0 km). It was used as the deciding ball when he struck out left-hander Andres Jimenez on a swing in the 4th inning. Jimenez’s bat followed the slow curve that fell while drawing a parabola. 

This moment caught the eye of ‘Pitching Ninja’ Rob Friedman, who is famous for major league pitching analysis. Friedman posted a video of Jimenez being struck out on his social media account and said, “It’s Ryu Hyun-jin’s dazzling 64.6 mph curveball. It was the slowest curveball that a starting pitcher had to miss this season.” 

Friedman then said, ‘It’s fun to check Ryu Hyun-jin’s restraint. Most pitchers check how fast they throw, but Ryu Hyun-jin checks how slow he throws. 

After his return from injury, Ryu Hyun-jin’s curveball is as powerful as his main weapon, the changeup. The curve, a changing ball that represents the aesthetics of slowness, has been used as the 4th and 5th pitches of Ryu Hyun-jin in the way of showing. However, this year, the use rate is 18.6%, the second highest in all 10 seasons of his major league debut. The average 70.1 mile (112.8 km) slow curve miss rate is 36.1%, and the hit rate is only 101%. It is a pitch that has a high risk of allowing a long hit if the ball is not controlled or is read by the number of goals, but Ryu Hyun-jin’s unique command and ball combination are overcoming it. The only extra-long hit hit by a curveball was hit by Freeman in the 5th inning that day, and his curveball batting average was only .195. 

Command perfect revival in 14 months, Ryu Hyun-jin himself was not surprised at all

It was my second Tommy John surgery at the late age of my mid-thirties. Ryu Hyun-jin successfully overcame the shoulder joint and labrum surgery, which had only a 7% chance of recovery, but this time, I thought it would be difficult for him to make a comeback. However, Ryu Hyun-jin was confident that he would make a comeback as long as he was healthy, and announced his resurrection to the world after 5 games of his return. 

Ryu Hyun-jin, who returned to the major league mound after 14 months of rehabilitation after Tommy John surgery in June of last year, is recording 3 wins and 1 loss with an ERA of 2.25 and a WHIP of 1.00 in games after returning. He hasn’t pitched more than six innings yet on a managerial level, but his pitching is good, with 19 hits (3 home runs), 5 walks and 20 strikeouts in 24 total innings. Since his comeback against the Baltimore Orioles on the 2nd (4 runs in 5 innings), it has been stable with pitches of 2 earned runs or less in 4 consecutive games. 

His fastball velocity has not recovered as much as before the surgery, but his pitching has returned perfectly to his prime. Normally, it is known that it takes 18 months for a pitcher who has undergone Tommy John surgery to recover his original skills in all aspects, including retrieval and control, but Ryu Hyun-jin found himself four months earlier than this. 

According to Canada’s ‘Sportsnet’, after the game Ryu Hyun-jin said, “Honestly, I’m not very surprised at his command resilience. The most important thing is that his body is healthy. He can do what it takes to throw my ball because he is in good shape,” he replied. 

Toronto coach John Schneider also said, “Ryu Hyun-jin pitched great. It’s efficient, and the location is really well done. Today’s batters are focused on fast balls, but Ryu Hyun-jin uses both the inside and outside while controlling the ball. It’s not a type of pitch that’s common these days, but he’s done really well this way throughout his career.”

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