Is it just a “press play” by the manager? Or are they genuinely interested in re-signing Ryu, 36, and it’s all about the money. Toronto Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins, 50, has left the door open by mentioning Ryu as an “option”. There is a lot of interest in the future of Ryu.
Toronto general manager Ross Atkins gave an end-of-season interview to local media, including Canadian outlet Sportsnet, on Aug. 8 (KST).
Toronto ended the season on May 5, losing both games of the American League Wild Card Series to the Minnesota Twins in the 2023 Major League Baseball postseason.
Now, Toronto fans are turning their attention to the club’s post-Stovrig strategy. Part of that is whether to re-sign players who are set to become free agents after this season. Toronto has pitcher Hyun-jin Ryu, infielders Matt Chapman and Brandon Belt, and outfielder Kevin Kiermaier, who are all set to hit the free agent market when their contracts expire.
“We will miss Matt Chapman and Brandon Belt and Kevin Kiermaier,” Atkins said, “and we’ll see opportunities to work to fill those holes from within and externally,” he added.
“The bulk of our pitching returning minus Hyun Jin Ryu,” Atkins continued, “includes Alec Manoa. “But with Alek Manoah coming back into the fold, Hyun Jin Ryu could be an alternative for us,” Atkins said, leaving all possibilities open.
Ryu, who played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, became a free agent for the first time after the 2019 season. He signed a four-year, $80 million contract with Toronto and went 24-15 in 60 games for the Jays. In 2020, he finished third in the American League Cy Young Award after going 5-2 with a 2.69 ERA in the 60-game shortened season. He followed that up with a career-high 14 wins in 2021.
However, his season was cut short after six games last year due to elbow ligament reconstruction surgery (Tommy John surgery), and he returned in August of this season to have a successful bounce-back season. In 11 starts this season, he went 3-3 with a 3.46 ERA. Ryu still wants to play in the major leagues. Sportsnet’s Nicholson-Smith wrote on social media that Ryu wants to sign with a major league team next season.
Contrary to the Toronto general manager’s comments, however, there were local reports that it would be difficult for him to stay in Toronto. “Ryu’s contract is up, leaving a hole in Toronto’s top five,” Yahoo Sports Canada reported on July 7. Toronto will likely utilize a starting rotation of Kevin Gausman, Jose Berrios, Chris Bassitt, and Yusei Kikuchi next season. All four have won more than 10 games and have a combined ERA in the low 3s. They’ve also pitched more than 162 innings in regulation, proving their durability.메이저사이트
And, as the general manager himself said, Alec Manoa is a strong candidate to be Toronto’s number five starter next season. Manoa, who is known as the “Hyun-jin Ryu guy,” had high hopes after going 9-2 with a 3.22 ERA in 2021 and 16-7 with a 2.24 ERA in 2022, but he struggled this season, going 3-9 with a 5.87 ERA. His struggles led to two trips to the minors. “None of Toronto’s other free agents are as important as Matt Chapman,” MLB.com wrote. It’s unclear if the Jays will be able to afford Chapman’s price tag.
Still, the fact that the manager mentioned Hyun-Jin Ryu as an option is significant. He’s certainly not a guaranteed starter, but he’s a guy who could fill the gap if one of the existing options goes down with injury or poor performance. In the end, it comes down to price. If you’re just looking at him as a “backup,” you’re not going to get a lot of money. However, Ryu is still an attractive option to start for other teams. Zack Greinke also signed a one-year, $13 million deal to return to his hometown Kansas City Royals for the 2022 season. After going 11-6 with a 4.16 ERA for Houston in 2021, Greinke went 4-9 with a 3.68 ERA in 2022. How much will Toronto offer for Ryu?