The Blue Jays have signed remaining-handerHyun-Jin Ryuto a four-year, $80MM contract, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman studies (Twitter connection). Ryu’s offer doesn’t have an opt-out clause, in accordance to United states Today’s Bob Nightengale (Twitter connection), when MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez experiences that there is a partial no-trade clause concerned. Ryu is represented by the Boras Company.
The information finishes a spirited current market for Ryu’s solutions, as at least 6 teams (the Dodgers, Angels, Braves, Padres, Cardinals, and Twins) were all known to have some diploma of curiosity in the southpaw this offseason. When all of those groups had been either playoff clubs in 2019 or are preparing to contend in 2020, it was the rebuilding Blue Jays who made the significant strike, asserting that their individual return to competition is coming faster fairly than later on. The Jays ended up regarded to be looking at both of those the prime tier and the decrease tiers of the pitching current market, while the signing nonetheless comes as a surprise, supplied how Toronto’s earlier acquisitions had been much more modest.
Ryu joinsTanner Roark,Chase Anderson, andShun Yamaguchias recently-acquired members of Toronto’s rotation, totally overhauling a starting off personnel that was expected to be a important place of emphasis this wintertime. Yamaguchi could wind up in the bullpen if the Jays go with some mixture of in-household candidatesMatt Shoemaker,Trent Thornton,Ryan Borucki,Anthony Kay, orJacob Waguespackfor the last two rotation destinations. Star prospectNate Pearsonis also anticipated to make his large league debut at some position in 2020, so a person of all those rotation places could in the long run be earmarked for him down the extend, or the Jays could relieve Pearson into the majors as a reliever.
When Pearson might be the ace of the potential, Ryu is now firmly the ace of the existing. The lefty completed 2nd in NL Cy Young Award voting very last time on the heels of a league-most effective two.32 Era and 1.two BB/9, as very well as a six.seventy nine K/BB level, 8. K/nine, and 50.four% grounder rate. Period predictors weren’t pretty as impressed (three.10 FIP, 3.32 xFIP, three.77 SIERA) with Ryu’s general performance, although his modest ninety.6mph fastball concluded in the bottom 11th percentile in both fastball velocity and spin fee.
On the in addition facet of the Statcast coin, Ryu was also one particular of the league’s best pitchers in limiting hard-hit balls and exit velocity, and his .263 wOBA was only slightly lower than his .281 xwOBA. Despite the lack of fastball velocity, Ryu continue to experienced the 26th most productive heater of any experienced pitcher in the activity in accordance to Fangraphs’ Pitch Value metrics, though his changeup was 1 of the 10 most helpful pitches in all of baseball in 2019.
Probably most importantly, Ryu also tossed 182 2/three innings past calendar year, his optimum workload considering that his 2013 debut season in MLB and the first time he’d topped even the 126 two/3 inning plateau since 2014. Ryu experienced only a pair of minimum injured list stints for minor neck and groin soreness in 2019, as opposed to the much extra critical setbacks that plagued him earlier in his occupation. Shoulder and elbow surgical procedures minimal Ryu to just a solitary video game in 2015-sixteen, he missed near to three months in 2018 thanks to a torn groin, and IL stints for foot and hip problems confined him to 126 2/3 IP in 2017.
This personal injury background and Ryu’s age (he turns 33 in March) have been causes why MLBTR projected him to only land a 3-calendar year, $54MM deal, even with his outstanding 2019 campaign and his total potent track report in 740 1/three vocation innings in the majors. The Blue Jays could have been compelled to go to four a long time to encourage Ryu to sign up for a staff that didn’t offer you as apparent a route to speedy competition as some of his other suitors.
Even with Ryu signed, it continues to be to be witnessed if the Jays will arise as a risk to return to the playoffs soon after three straight losing seasons. The crew will be counting on its youthful main ofVladimir Guerrero Jr.,Lourdes Gurriel Jr.,Bo Bichette,Cavan Biggio, andDanny Jansento all consider steps ahead, while much more knowledgeable hands likeRandal Grichuk(who had been Toronto’s highest-compensated player prior to the Ryu signing) and the newly-obtainedTravis Shawwill need to enhance on mediocre 2019 performances.
The Ryu signing also re-aligns anticipations for the rest of the Jays’ offseason. On paper, this could be Toronto’s edition of the Cubs’ offer withJon Lesterprior to the 2015 year — the massive-ticket veteran pitching acquisition that indicated the rebuilding Cubs experienced plenty of religion in their up-and-coming young staff to go for it right after a prolonged rebuild. If the Jays are critical about hard for the postseason as soon as 2020, far more sizeable veteran upgrades could be manufactured to center subject, the bullpen, the first base/DH combine further than Shaw andRowdy Tellez, or even the rotation. CloserKen Gileswas widely assumed to be a trade applicant, but now the Blue Jays could possibly preserve Giles for the closing yr of his contract in buy to continue to keep the ninth inning locked down.
The Jays’ present-day 2020 payroll (as for every Roster Resource) projects to be just beneath $122.2MM, so thinking of that the 2016-18 golf equipment all concluded the season with payrolls in the $164MM-$167MM range, GM Ross Atkins could have more spending space for even more moves. Ryu is the third-best contract even presented out by the franchise, topped only byVernon Wells’ $126MM extension in the 2006-07 offseason and the five-calendar year, $82MM cost-free agent deal forRussell Martinprior to the 2015 year.
Ryu is the most current arm to leave what has been a scorching scorching marketplace for totally free agent starting off pitchers. Returning to MLBTR’s Leading fifty Totally free Agents listing,Alex Wood(at #39) is now the best-rated starter still on the board, as the 14 pitchers ahead of him have all observed new offers in advance of Xmas. As Heyman notes on Twitter, the a lot of teams even now wanting for rotation updates could now be pressured to take a look at the trade sector, which could guide to a flurry of promotions ahead of Opening Working day.
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