Whenever Ryu Hyun-jin comes up, there’s defensive hysteria… and he’s the only one in MLB who’s had the misfortune to experience it.

Since returning to the major leagues after Tommy John surgery to repair ligaments in his elbow, Ryu Hyun-jin (36, Toronto) has been proving his “class” – literally. He is winning games with a fastball in the low-80s, which is too slow for this day and age.

The fact that he doesn’t rely on his velocity is what makes him unique. He has a four-seam fastball that sits in the high 90s, a cutter and sinker in the 80s, a changeup in the 70s, and a curveball in the 60s. He doesn’t just throw it, he can throw it wherever he wants. As a hitter, it’s crazy to see a fastball land in the same spot as a sinker, followed by a changeup. As soon as the bat leaves the plate, it’s easy to lose to Ryu’s experience.

In six games since his return, Ryu has a batting average of just .213. He’s not a four-pitch pitcher by nature, so it’s not surprising that his WHIP is 1.03. There are plenty of positive metrics in the details, too. Ryu’s average batted ball speed this season is just 86.9 miles per hour (139.9 kilometers per hour). That’s not much different than the 86.6 mph he hit in 2019, one of his best years. In an era where batted balls are getting harder and harder to hit, Ryu is generating insane power with efficient pitching.

He’s been on a roll since a five-inning, four-run outing in Baltimore on Aug. 2, when he wasn’t feeling his best on the mound. Since then, Ryu has pitched 24 innings in five games with three wins and a 1.50 ERA. He has yet to go the full six innings, but has been efficient with 15.41 pitches per inning. It’s a strategic move by the bench to save Ryu, who isn’t 100% yet. At the rate he’s pitching, it’s reasonable to expect his innings to come naturally.

Ryu’s last five pitches have been of a class we haven’t seen much of in the majors this year. As of 2023, there have only been 61 times (including multiple times by the same player) that a pitcher has thrown 24 or more innings in a five-game stretch and allowed four or fewer earned runs. The number of pitchers who have accomplished this is even smaller. Ryu Hyun-jin is proudly included in this list. But there’s one strange statistic. He has the largest difference between runs and earned runs.

Ryu had four earned runs in this period, but nine runs were given up. In 61 instances, the only time the difference between runs and ERA was more than five runs was in his last five games, which means that his teammates have been making a lot of mistakes. With fewer errors, Ryu’s results could have been even better.

The parade of errors began on August 14 against the Chicago Cubs. In the top of the first inning, Happ’s routine grounder to first base was not caught by the first baseman, Belt, putting runners on first and second. Two batters later, Ryu Hyun-jin hit a two-run double off Swanson. Both runs would have been unearned if not for Belt’s error.

On Aug. 21 against Cincinnati, Chapman’s throw to cut down Marte’s shallow fly ball to left field with runners on first and third put two runners on base at once. If the throwing error hadn’t been made, the run would have been unearned.

Again against Cleveland on Aug. 27, Ramirez and Gonzalez hit back-to-back singles with one out in the sixth inning, leading to back-to-back errors in the infield. A calmly executed one-out play would have put runners on second and third at best, and the inning would have ended without a run when Garcia struck out Jimenez, the second pitcher of the inning. Again, it was a non-run.

The batting support has been solid. However, Ryu’s defense hasn’t been up to the task. If Toronto’s defense was bad to begin with, this would be a fate that Ryu would have to accept. But then again, it’s not. Chapman is the best third base defender in the league, and the rest of the infield is average. The outfield, anchored by Kevin Kiermaier and Dalton Bashaw, is arguably the best defense in the league. And yet, when Ryu is on the mound, it’s a group effort.

Unearned runs don’t have much of an impact on the ERA calculation. However, they do affect some calculations, such as runs allowed and Wins Above Replacement (WAR). And since ERAs aren’t the only way to determine wins and losses, they can lead to losses for the team as well as for Ryu. Therefore, the fewer errors you make, the better, not necessarily for Ryu’s sake.

Toronto has a tough schedule ahead. In the midst of a tight American League wild-card race, Toronto is in fourth place with four games in hand. They are 1.5 games behind third-place Houston. Every game is on the line. Starting on the fifth, the Jays will need to win as many games as they can in a six-game series against the league’s weakest teams in Oakland and Kansas City. Ryu will pitch the final game of the three-game series against Oakland on July 7, starting at 4:37 AM.메이저사이트

After that, it’s a tough stretch of Texas, Boston, the New York Yankees, and Tampa Bay. The Yankees are the only team with a winning percentage below .500, and even they are close to .500 at 68-69 (.496) after four days. No team under 5% can ignore the Yankees. Toronto needs Ryu and the defense to be in sync, and the mound and the defense to be in sync.

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