Ryu Hyun-jin’s changeup is back. With his signature breaker back in arsenal, the MLB pitcher recorded his first shutout in Blue Jays uniforms.
On Sunday, the South Korean starter of the Toronto Blue Jays pulled off a seven-inning shutout against the Texas Rangers at Sahlen Field in Buffalo, New York, carrying his team to a 5-0 win in the first leg of a doubleheader. Since last year, MLB doubleheaders have been curtailed to seven innings as a preventive measure against the spread of coronavirus to cut the amount of game time. And thanks to the new regulation, Ryu was able to secure his first seven-inning shutout. Winning the opener of the latter half of the season, his season record improved to 9-5 and his ERA dropped from 3.56 to 3.32.
This is the third time that Ryu has won a shutout since his MLB debut. Having recorded eight shutouts for the Hanwha Eagles in Korea, Ryu, as pitcher of the Los Angeles Dodgers, posted shutout wins on May 29, 2013 (against Los Angeles Angels) and May 8, 2019 (against Atlanta Braves).
Ryu Hyun-jin’s 83-pitch shutout (11.9 per inning) enabled his team to finish the game in 1 hour and 48 minutes, the shortest game this season in the major leagues. “The changeups were great today. I got the feedback that my arm drops when throwing a changeup, so I tried to correct that during the bullpen pitching. I could throw changeups in the same form of fastballs, and that paid off,” Ryu said after the game. “I chose to throw other breakers when the Texas batters seemed to be expecting a changeup, leading them to miss the hit. I feel quite satisfied with that, too.”
Kyu-In Hwang email@example.com