Ryu Hyun-jin, 36, the “Korean Monster,” returned from Tommy John surgery and pitched his best game in 480 days with a quality start. But his teammates couldn’t help him. The team’s bats went silent and he took the loss. Local fans are also criticizing Toronto’s batting lineup.
Ryu took the mound for the 2023 Major League Baseball home opener against the Texas Rangers at Rogers Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, on Wednesday (June 13), throwing 82 pitches in six innings, giving up five hits (one home run), one walk, five strikeouts and three runs, his first quality start since returning from surgery, but suffering his third loss of the season. His ERA rose from 2.65 to 2.93.
Toronto was in the second wild-card spot in the American League with 13 games to play, but trailed Texas by half a game and the Seattle Mariners by one game. Ryu’s shoulders were heavy. Obviously, Ryu did his job. But the team’s bats weren’t good enough.
The Texas lineup that faced Ryu on this day is a potent offense. They are second in team batting average (.267) and third in OPS (.793) among the 30 major league clubs, both of which are first in the American League.
Against one of the best offenses in the American League, Ryu was perfect through three innings. He showed off his knife-edge delivery.
The fourth inning was a disappointment. Robbie Grossman hit a cutter for a two-run home run. It was his first homer in four games, dating back to last month’s game against the Cleveland Indians (two).
Still, after minimizing the damage and throwing just 62 pitches through five innings, Ryu took the mound in the sixth. It was his first sixth-inning start since returning from surgery, and while the result was disappointing, it was a quality start. After giving up a leadoff double to Seager and striking out Grossman, he was hit again by Garber to put runners on first and third. He induced a grounder to Haim that became a sacrifice fly to end the inning with one out.
Toronto scored two runs in the seventh and one in the ninth after Ryu went down, but fell 3-6 to drop their second straight. Despite Ryu’s strong outing, it was the worst possible outcome for Toronto. With this result, Toronto is now in third place, half a game behind Texas. They have two games left to catch up.
The local Canadian criticized the batting lineup for not helping Ryu. In particular, the struggles of Vladimir Guerrero Jr. were singled out.
In an article titled “What Happened to Guerrero Jr.”, the Toronto Sun wrote, “It’s time for Toronto to have a signature hitter. It’s September. It’s a series against Texas, specifically. It’s the time to play the most desperate, most important baseball,” and “Guerrero Jr. needs to do it. He needs to hit something big.”토토사이트
But Guerrero Jr. was silent in both games of the two-game series against Texas. For the second straight game, he went 0-for-4. On this particular day, he struck out three times.
“In a jumbled lineup of veterans, youngsters, and call-ups, Guerrero Jr. should be different. But hits came from Schneider, Biggio, and Horwitz,” and then continued, “Guerrero Jr. is hitting just .214 in September. It’s understandable that Bo Bissett isn’t hitting right now. He probably came back from his injury quickly. Brandon Belt is back on the disabled list. But Guerrero Jr. hasn’t done anything.”
“While the result wasn’t what Toronto wanted, the loss can’t be blamed solely on Ryu,” said the Toronto Star. “It was Ryu’s first quality start since May 20, 2022. In 35 innings pitched this season, Ryu has an impressive 2.93 ERA,” and lamented the bats’ silence.