Reports Indicate Hyun-jin Ryu Will Probably Accept Dodger’s Qualifying Offer

Hyun-Jin Ryu Vs. A's

The Dodgers offered qualifying offers to two of their free agents this winter. Left handed starter Hyun-jin Ryu was one of them. The other was catcher Yasmani Grandal. While it is expected that Grandal will reject the offer to test the free agent market, reports are indicating that Ryu will indeed accept the 17.9 million dollar qualifying offer from the Dodgers. The deadline for players to inform clubs of their decision is this afternoon at 2PM PST.

That seems like a good bet for both sides. Ryu has been with the Dodgers since inking a contract in 2013 and has been one of their most quality pitching performers. Unfortunately injuries have derailed his career over the last several seasons. Most notably a major groin tear knocked him out of action for most of the 2018 season. He’s also battled back from shoulder surgery which nearly ended his career.

When he was healthy Ryu was one of the Dodger’s best starters this season. Ryu only toed the rubber in 15 games in 2018 for the boys in blue but posted a 1.97 ERA and struck out 9.7 batters per nine across 82.1 excellent frames. Ryu posted a 7-3 record with a 3.00 FIP while allowing 7.4 hits per nine and issuing just 15 walks. The southpaw struck out 89 and walked only 1.6 per nine as well.

Overall since 2013 Ryu has posted a 40-28 record with a 3.20 ERA and struck out 8.1 per nine. He’s notched 502 strikeouts and posted a 1.2 WHIP, which included a 1.008 WHIP during his fine 2018 campaign. Ryu has never posted an ERA higher than 3.77 in any year he’s made more than one start, his injury riddled 2016 season notwithstanding.

Ryu made four starts for the Dodgers in the postseason, including two in the NLCS and one in the World Series against Boston. While he did toss seven shutout innings against the Braves in the opening game of the NLDS, he struggled throughout the rest of the postseason. He posted an 8.59 ERA in the NLCS against the Brewers and a 7.71 ERA in the World Series. Ryu earned 7.8 million dollars in 2018 and is 31-years old. If healthy Ryu should become another solid rotation piece for the Dodgers again in 2019. It stands to reason that this is a logical move for both sides after the Korean’s excellent season. The Dodgers like Ryu, and Ryu likes the Dodgers.

Scott Andes

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Former Co-editor of Lasorda's Lair. Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic Cheap MLB Tickets

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14 thoughts on “Reports Indicate Hyun-jin Ryu Will Probably Accept Dodger’s Qualifying Offer

  1. I really have no problem with Ryu coming back. He is a solid guy. I would love to see him have a season without any injuries again because the guy can pitch. He is much better at Dodger Stadium than on the road. We will find out in a couple of hours about him and Grandal. As for the 20 or so minor league free agents, I do not see them retaining any of those guys.

    1. $18M is an awful lot of money for a SP who has only been able to play half a season at best due to injuries for several years. In most professions, the inability to perform usually outweighs the benefits of retaining someone. I guess we’ll have to see what transpires in 2019 and whether he is able to stay healthy.

      1. Yep, it is. But he was their best pitcher down the stretch. I think the problems he had the last couple of starts may have been a stamina issue since he really was not stretched out much before he returned to the rotation. We will see, if he is healthy all year, he is a 14-17 win kind of guy.

      2. His regular season numbers were fluky. His FIP will be closer to 4, he’ll get hurt and be mediocre in the playoffs if they get there. Then he’ll leave as an UFA since we can’t offer him the QO.

        I’d be more intrigued by giving the ball to a youngster like Ferguson or Santana. Instead both will be in the minors or deep in the bullpen.

  2. Sickels top 20 for the Dodgers:

    https://www.minorleagueball.com/2018/11/12/18088804/los-angeles-dodgers-top-20-prospects-for-2019

    Omar Estevez making a move.

    From the comments:
    Joc did not hit there, though he had just a month worth of PAs
    Corey Seager (19 years old, 2013) – 309/.389/.529 in 312 PAs
    Bellinger went straight from Ogden to Rancho, Yusniel Diaz went straight to Rancho
    Verdugo (19, 2015) – .295/.325/.394 in 444 PAs
    Lux (19, 2017) – .244/.331/.362 in 501 PAs
    Keibert (18, 2017) – .317/.372/.423

    I know anything can happen to catching prospects, but I think Keibert is real deal. If you hit in the Midwest League at 18/19, you’re starting in the bigs in at least 3 years. I also think Verdugo needs to be given a chance somewhere. He held his own in 2015.

  3. Acuna wins the ROY in the NL and Ohtani in the AL. Buehler finished 3rd in the voting. I figured that would happen. But was surprised that Ohtani beat out those 2 Yankee kids.

  4. Ryu was mediocre in 2017 and off the playoff roster. He was solid last year though he missed 3 months with a groin injury. He had 1 good playoff start and 3 lousy ones. He made 6 million last year, now he’s an 18 million dollar pitcher, 3 x the price. You let me know if that is worth it?

    Every move this organization makes is infuriating. If you’re wanting to stay under the tax why are you bringing back a guy at triple his salary to 18 million? Now they have again, Hill, Ryu, Wood in the revolving door of mid tier lefties. Also, Kershaw, Maeda, Buehler, Stripling, plus Ferguson, Urias and Santana. So they need 10-11 potential starters not even mentioning others in the minors.

    They just love interchangeable redundancy at every position.

    1. Yep, Ryu was mediocre in 2017. He was coming back from almost 2 years on the DL and a shoulder injury that had a great chance to end his career. That he came back and pitched at all is amazing. And he did have a bad playoffs this year. At least his last 3 games. The stats say he is a much better pitcher at home. His ERA at Dodger Stadium was below 2 this year and he was 5-2 at home. The games in the playoffs and World Series that he lost were on the road. Bad decision. Is he worth 17.9? We will find out. He is a solid #3 and will probably be the #4 guy next year. With Buehler, Hill and Kershaw in front of him. He has pitched well most of his career when healthy and I think that is what they are hoping they get out of him. He is a known quality. As far as those other guys, I am of a belief that they are going to try and fill their holes through trades rather than free agency. Guys like Maeda and Stripling have value. So does Stewart. I would wait until spring to pass judgment on the pitching staff. When we see what the staff looks like in April, then you can see what they have done. Right now with the non tendering and MLB meetings coming up over the next month, the roster will look a lot different by February when they report. Giving him the QO might end up looking very good, and if it does not, I would bet they get more from Ryu than they did the last guy they gave the QO to, Brett Anderson who pitched in 1 game for 10 million. It is a known fact that they are going to try and move Kemp again. He is getting 21.5 this year and there are rumors that if they cannot trade him, they will do the same thing they did to Carl Crawford and just eat the contract. Which to me is asinine since Kemp more than proved he is still a productive player. He led the team in ribbies and BA. And he hit .353 with runners in scoring position. Better than anyone on the team including Turner and Machado.

      1. Of course it’s assinine. That is what Saber Fail is saying about the way the FO goes about its business. They want to save money, but they make moves that prevent it while also preventing others already in the system from developing and taking over.

        The only reason that makes sense to me is one of loyalty to Ryu who worked hard to overcome his injuries to get back to the starting rotation. From a pure baseball perspective, Ryu makes no sense. Hill is already getting $16M or so and you have a backlog of possible starters ready to step in to fill out a Kershaw, Buehler, Hill, rotation. This leads me to believe they will not do much with their relievers except use the starters that don’t make the rotation in the bullpen, meaning Wood, Stripling, Ferguson, Urias, & Maeda. With Ryu, they need 1 more starter to fill it out and they will choose 1 from the group of current relievers like Maeda or Urias. This solves the money problem because most of them are on low contracts like Buehler, Urias, Ferguson and Maeda. Maeda’s base contract is $3M.

        Wood will get arbitration and his contract could go up to $9M as a starter. I would think he would likely be a target to be traded from the Dodger POV. Too expensive for the bullpen, not productive enough as a starter. The rest are cheap, cheap, cheap.

  5. IMO, the Dodgers did Ryu a big favor, offering over a $10M raise for not doing much for 6 years. I think they would have been better off just releasing him. He would not have been able to get a decent multi-year contract in the FA market. He would also have had to leave LA and its’ huge Korean Community. I am sure he is happy to be able to stay in LA.

    A total disappointment. His injury prone Dodger career has been an achilles heel to the Dodger pitching rotation.

    Now, their only hope is if some team, desperate for a starting pitcher, will pick him up in a trade. Even if they do manage to trade him, they will get very little in return.

    Every year, the Dodgers boost having an abundance of starting pitchers, only to end up struggling to field 4 decent starters, picked from a stable of walking wounded.

    It is time to “let the kids play”. BTW, Buehler would have had a better chance of taking the ROY, had he had bigger numbers. The Dodgers, as what they do with a lot of their rookies, limit their playing time. Stop coddling these kids, and assuming they are not mature enough, or strong enough for full-time, 100% participation. Kick Ferguson, Buehler, Urias, and Stripling out of the nest. It is time for the Dodgers to let them to play and contribute.

    1. Better amend that time line blue. He has been with the Dodgers since 2013. His first 2 seasons he won 14 games each year. Then he got hurt. He missed all of 2015 and only pitched in 1 game in 2016. He came back in 2017 and had a rough year. Last year after he came back he was one of the best the Dodgers had, especially at home where he was 5-2. He pitched well in the NLDS, but had some problems after that, mainly because he only pitched on the road. Yeah, they probably would have been better off non tendering the QO, but when he is healthy, Ryu is as good a pitcher as anyone else they have. The guy knows how to pitch and he gets by with less than nasty stuff. If they trade anyone it will not be Ryu. I would think that Maeda, and Stripling are much more attractive to another team than he is. And trading pitching is not a priority. They need catching help, a new second baseman and for sure a guy who can be a bridge to Jansen.

  6. Yes Michael, Ryu had his moments, but overall, excess baggage… so bad, I totally forgot about his early years.

    I would hate to lose Strips or Maeda. Maeda looked good in Hiroshima… nice homecoming. Strips needs to iron out his problems, and I think he can.

    Maybe package Ryu and Woods and others (AA talent) for new catcher… even throw Kiké in the mix.

    Verdugo needs a serious look, as does Diaz and Smith.

    Give CT3 a shot at every day 2B…. see if it works out. Cut his swing down and convert him to a realiable leadoff, contact hitter, with good speed on the basepaths.

    1. I have to agree with you there. They have a surplus of starting pitching so a trade could be in order. My way of thinking though is that they will have a hard time trading Ryu and that close to 18 million, just as they would trading Hill or Kemp. I am pretty sure they are committed to keeping the salaries under the tax, so they will pursue some sort of trade of Kemp if they even have to eat some of his contract. The most attractive piece though is probably Puig. He is in his last arbitration year and has value. So would Pederson coming off of what for him was a very productive season. But no matter what they do, until they change the mind sets of these hitters who are so all or nothing oriented, I do not see much improvement at all. I am also thinking to save his arm from too many innings they might just use Urias out of the pen exclusively this year. There is no progress on a new deal for Roberts. He is sticking to his guns I guess and wants a 4 year deal for about the same money the Stros gave AJ Hinch. 5 player trade today between the Pirates and Indians. No name players, just a few scrubs going each way.

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