Eric Stephen of True Blue L.A. passes along two unconfirmed reports from Korea about Los Angeles Dodgers left-handed starting pitcher Hyun-jin Ryu:
— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) May 19, 2015
Both links are to stories written in Korean, but a rough translation indicates that while MRIs have not identified a specific problem in Ryu’s shoulder, the fact that rest and rehab have not helped at all indicates that a surgical fix is the only viable option.
Ryu has not pitched this season. He was shut down late in spring training with “shoulder fatigue,” but his throwing sessions have caused concern, with reports that his fastball has only been in the 82-83 MPH range. He was transferred to the 60-day disabled list in early May to make room on the Dodgers’ ever-changing 40-man roster. He is eligible to come off the disabled list next week, but clearly that is not in the cards.
If these reports are accurate, the Dodgers will be down to 60 percent of their projected starting rotation. Right-hander Brandon McCarthy had Tommy John surgery on April 30 and is out until mid-season next year. Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke, and Brett Anderson remain the only healthy members of the Dodgers’ original rotation.
Right-hander Carlos Frias has pitched well as the new fourth starter, and righty Mike Bolsinger has recently appeared to lock down the fifth spot with three strong starts. Brandon Beachy, who signed with the Dodgers in the offseason as he recovers from his second Tommy John surgery, should be available around the All-Star break.
Despite missing important chunks of their starting rotation, the Dodgers have the second-best record in Major League Baseball at 24-13 and hold a 4.5-game lead over the San Francisco Giants in the National League West as they begin a three-game series in San Francisco this evening.