Pirates @ Dodgers April 7, 2013: Ryu Goes For the Sweep

dodger_stadium_2013_150x150

In his major league debut last Tuesday, Hyun-jin Ryu scattered 10 hits over 6.1 innings against the Giants, allowing three runs (only one earned, thanks to Justin Sellers), and not issuing a single walk. If something much less than outstanding, it was effective, and that’s good enough for the man’s first start in a strange country.

Here’s what’s fun, though: when Ryu steps on the mound this afternoon to attempt to help the Dodgers finish off a sweep of the Pirates, he won’t have thrown a single pitch (other than pre-game warm-ups today) since getting Brandon Crawford to ground out in the seventh inning last week.

Yahoo’s Tim Brown has more on Ryu’s unusual methods, which I’ve snipped two unrelated paragraphs from:

In the U.S., the vast majority of starting pitchers throws a fairly rigorous bullpen session between starts. It is there where pitchers maintain arm strength and feel, and troubleshoot issues from the previous start. Ryu might throw the ball around in the outfield with a teammate. Or he might not.

If nothing else, it’s interesting. Honeycutt said that, outside a few with aching or worn-down bodies, he’d not known of a pitcher whose philosophy was to go – literally – from start to start. A lot of coaching takes place in those bullpen sessions. A lot of refining. A lot of conversation.

Pirates
Dodgers
LF
Marte
LF
Crawford
2B
Walker
2B
Punto
CF
McCutchen
CF
Kemp
1B
Sanchez
1B
Gonzalez
C
McKenry
RF
Hairston
3B
Alvarez
3B
Uribe
RF
Tabata
C
Federowicz
SS
McDonald
SS
Sellers
P
Locke
P
Ryu

The Dodgers have said that they’re willing to let Ryu continue his practice of not throwing between games so long as it works for him, and that’s admirable on their part; there’s no point in making the player unhappy by forcing him to do something he doesn’t want to do, as long as he’s effective doing it his own way.

Back to today’s game: Tim Federowicz gets his first start of the season and sixth of his career, but it’s almost certainly his final one for quite some time. Ramon Hernandez (wearing #33 for now, though he’s attempting to get #55) is expected to be in uniform this afternoon as the Dodgers will staff three catchers for games today and Tuesday, before likely sending Federowicz down to make room for Chad Billingsley on Wednesday.  I don’t know about you, but I’m rooting for Federowicz to hit for the cycle, just because it would be awkward. Want to see it for yourself? Looks like there’s still some decent Dodgers tickets available for today’s game.

The rest of today’s lineup is a fun combination between “it’s a lefty” and “it’s a getaway day”, because Andre Ethier, Luis Cruz, and Mark Ellis are all sitting. That gets Nick Punto his first start of the season, and while having Jerry Hairston batting fifth isn’t ideal, having Ethier, Cruz, A.J. Ellis, Mark Ellis, & Hernandez all on the bench likely makes for the strongest set of reserves the team will have in any game all season.

If and when Ryu is removed, I’m guessing we’ll see some new faces out of the bullpen. As you can see from the chart below, which is updated daily on the bullpen page, Brandon League, Kenley Jansen, & Paco Rodriguez have each pitched two days in a row, while neither Chris Capuano or Matt Guerrier has appeared at all this season. With a Monday off-day looming, I’m guessing Don Mattingly won’t want to completely freeze that duo; on the other hand, Ronald Belisario & J.P. Howell are each well-rested, so he might just say the hell with them. I’m pretty okay with that.

Fri 10/11Sat 10/12Sun 10/13Mon 10/14Tues 10/15Wed 10/16Thurs 10/17
RR. Belisario9105
LJ.P. Howell152026
RK. Jansen51626
RC. Marmol26
RB. Wilson281411
RC. Withrow2544
RE. Volquez
1032 comments
NewBlue
NewBlue

6 straight quality starts

DINGERS!
DINGERS!

RYU GETS WIN & SWEEP. SHORYUKEN!!

MSTI OG
MSTI OG

holy crap that poor kid's facial expression. that doesnt make you ever feel good

JoeyE
JoeyE

with that slider, howell is more than a loogy

Purple Drank
Purple Drank

I do love it that Donnie has used Paco before Howell

JoeyE
JoeyE

so is ABQ out of starters and thats why Guerra started or are they stretching him out?

Weston Taylor
Weston Taylor

Aaand why didn't they just pitch Capuano for three innings?

Kewldood69
Kewldood69

Time to go to the Kings/Ducks game. Peace!

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Ball boy fields a grounder, keeps ball with about 6 kids standing right behind him.

MSTI OG
MSTI OG

@Cecil Terwilliger (hopes someone else from MSTI is at the game and finds you, and either stalks you or buys you a beer and is cool)

KMT59
KMT59

@DBrim they have to wait until they are off the camera before giving the ball away...I've had a few conversations with Sergio and Javier