Ryu’s ‘magic curve’ could be Coors Field’s ‘worst’… 6㎝ less than flat ground, ‘4-straight win challenge critical’.

Attention is focused on what kind of choices ‘Vintage Ryu’ Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto Blue Jays) will show when he pitches at Coors Field, known as the ‘graveyard of pitchers.’

Ryu Hyun-jin will appear as a starting pitcher in the 2023 Major League Baseball (MLB) away game against the Colorado Rockies held at Coors Field in Denver, Colorado, USA on the 2nd (Korean time).

Through this appearance, Ryu Hyun-jin aims for his fourth consecutive win as a starter. Ryu Hyun-jin, who underwent his second elbow ligament joint surgery (Tommy John surgery)카지노사이트 in June of last year, returned to action against the Baltimore Orioles on August 2. Starting with the Cleveland Indians trip on August 8th, he continued his streak of 18 consecutive innings without an earned run, allowing 2 runs (0 earned runs) in 5 innings against the Chicago Cubs on the 14th, allowing 2 runs (0 earned runs) in 5 innings against the Cincinnati Reds on the 21st, and giving up 2 runs (0 earned runs) in 5 innings against the Cincinnati Reds on the 27th. It was their 3rd consecutive win with 3 runs (2 earned) in 5 innings.

What attracted attention in this process was the ‘magic curve’ of a minimum speed of 64.6 miles per hour (about 104 km). Ryu Hyun-jin drew praise from the U.S. and Canada by using a curveball as the deciding ball in the game against Cleveland on the 27th. Rob Friedman, a major league pitch analysis expert, said, “Hyun-Jin Ryu’s really cool 64.6 mph curveball. It’s the slowest curveball that’s resulted in a swing-and-miss by a starting pitcher this season. It’s so fun to see the velocity on the scoreboard. Most pitchers have this curveball.” “You can see how fast the speed is, but Ryu Hyun-jin makes you see how slow he throws,” he praised.

But this curve could be a significant variable at Coors Field. This is due to the characteristics of Coors Field. Coors Field, located at an altitude of 1609m above sea level, has an air density 18% lower than that at sea level, so even a hit ball with the same speed flies farther. According to Professor Alan Nathan of the University of Illinois, a 100 mph (about 160.9 km) ball with a launch angle of 25 to 30 degrees flies 400 feet (about 121.9 m) at sea level, but up to 425 feet (about 129.5 m) at Coors Field. fly.

What’s worse is that it also affects the movement of the ball. The rotation speed and movement of all pitches are different from those on flat ground, but according to Professor Nathan, the curve is more severe. If you throw an average curveball at a major league stadium other than Coors Field, it will fall 9.5 inches (about 24.1 cm) below and 9 inches (about 22.9 cm) to the side of where you aimed. However, at Coors Field, it only falls 7 inches (approximately 17.8 cm) below and 7 inches sideways. There is a difference of 2.5 inches (approximately 6.3 cm), so a curveball that would fall in the corner of the strike zone in other stadiums can become the worst ball in Coors Field, being driven to the exact center for an easy hit. A representative example is the appearance on June 29, 2019. Ryu Hyun-jin, who was a member of the LA Dodgers at the time, threw a total of 81 pitches, including 28 four-seam fastballs, 18 change-ups, 17 curves, 9 cutters, and 9 sinkers, and collapsed significantly with 9 hits (3 home runs), 1 walk, 4 strikeouts, and 7 runs in 4 innings. lost.

Moreover, since Ryu Hyun-jin’s curve speed averages only 70 miles per hour (approximately 112.7 km), he should avoid throwing as much as possible. About a month after the shocking 7 runs, Ryu Hyun-jin completely changed his ball combination and returned to the Coors mound. Ryu Hyun-jin, who took the mound on August 1, 2019, showed a pitch that significantly reduced the proportion of four-seam fastballs and curves with 30 cutters, 21 change-ups, 10 four-seam fastballs, 9 sinkers, 7 sliders, and 3 curves, and pitched 3 pitches in 6 innings. He allowed one hit, one walk, one strikeout, and no runs. As a result of blocking the four-seam fastball and curve, which are prone to long hits, Ryu Hyun-jin did not visit Coors Field for about four years after this game.

Four years have passed, but Coors Field is still the same. According to Baseball Savant, an American baseball statistics site, Coors Field’s park factor for the past three years was 111, making it the best hitter-friendly stadium, scoring more than the league average (100). In 2021, the team’s franchise star and best home run hitter, Nolan Arenado (St. Louis Cardinals), left, and Colorado’s batting line was weakened, so the home run factor falls short of its reputation at 108 (9th in the league). However, because the outfield is wide with a fence length of 106m on the left, 126m in the center, and 107m on the right, there are still many long hits, maintaining the reputation as a ‘pitcher’s graveyard’.

Ryu Hyun-jin’s career record at Coors Field is not good, with 1 win and 4 losses in 6 games (26⅔ innings) and an ERA of 7.09. However, since Ryu Hyun-jin has continued to evolve by adapting to his changed body and balance after returning from shoulder labrum surgery, it remains to be seen how he will utilize the curve that has become his main weapon.

The opposing pitcher is Chris Flexen, who is also familiar to KBO League fans. Flexen, who led the Doosan Bears to the Korean Series in 2020, returned to the big league through the Seattle Mariners in 2021. He served as the team’s third starter in his first two years in Seattle, but was released this year after a poor ERA of 7.71 in 17 games and moved to Colorado, where he has 1 win, 2 losses and 5.87 ERA in 6 games.

Article by Star News

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