The new destination of Ryu Hyun-jin (37), who has been “Freedom Body” for more than two months, is expected to be outlined soon.
With FA signing a series of contracts in recent months, chances are high that Ryu will decide which team he will play this season as early as this weekend. As left-hander James Paxton (36), who was classified as a starting pitcher similar to Ryu Hyun-jin, is joining the LA Dodgers, such prospects seem to be gaining momentum.
MLB.com said on the 23rd (Korean time), “The Dodgers have agreed to a contract with left-hander FA Paxton. It seems to be a one-year contract worth about $12 million without the club confirming it.”
John Hayman, a columnist for the New York Post, also said, “When the Dodgers completes its contract with Paxton, Payroll will rank No. 1 this year, beating the New York Mets. Paxton’s contract is worth around 12 million dollars.”
As a result, it is expected that Ryu Hyun-jin, an FA similar to Paxton, will be decided soon. At the FA market, which opened in earnest on Nov. 15 last year, Ryu did not get word of his contract until the day. At that time, his agent Scott Boras expressed his confidence, saying, “There are quite a few teams that are interested in Ryu. He will also throw the ball in the Major League next year.”
James Paxton will wear the LA Dodgers uniform on a $12 million-a-year deal. Yonhap News
After more than two months without a contract, Bleacher Report said on the 14th, “It’s surprising that no team has offered a one-year contract to Ryu Hyun-jin, who pitched well after returning last year.”
However, as mid- to low-priced FA sign contracts one after another recently, Ryu seems to be nearing his contract. On Monday, big-name outfielder Joey Gallo signed a one-year, 5 million-dollar contract with the Washington Nationals. The FA that signed contracts over the past week include Gallo and Paxton, Marcus Stroman (New York Yankees, two years, 37 million dollars), Jordan Hicks (San Francisco Giants, four years, 44 million dollars), Matt Carpenter (St. Louis Cardinals, one year, 740,000 dollars), Josh Hader (Houston Astros, five years, 95 million dollars), and Robert Stephenson (LA Angels, three years, 33 million dollars).
John Hayman reported on the 19th that “the second-class starting market, such as James Paxton, Ryu Hyun-jin and Michael Lorenzen, will move actively over the next 7-10 days after Blake Snell and Jordan Montgomery, the first-class FA,” adding that “teams such as the Pirates, Nationals, Red Sox, Orioles, and Padres can flirt with these pitchers.”헤라카지노도메인
In other words, the market is moving as he expected. Ryu Hyun-jin is likely to decide his future this weekend or by the end of this month at the latest. Moving on to February could cause disruptions to his physical fitness and season preparation schedule.
Recently, local media outlets presented various expected destinations for Ryu. SI’s “Inside the Padres” discussed the possibility of recruiting Ryu Hyun-jin for the San Diego Padres on the 21st, and Miami fan media “Marlin Maniac” claimed in an article titled “Will the Miami Marlins sign Ryu Hyun-jin? It could be a short-term solution in strengthening the pitching staff,” claiming that Ryu should sign a one-year contract. SI’s “Inside the A’s” also claimed on the 23rd that Oakland should do something in the FA market. Sign veteran starter Ryu Hyun-jin.
Paxton has been evaluated as a kind of Ryu Hyun-jin in the FA starting pitcher market. He is similar in that he is a left-hander with the same age, elbow surgery experience, and returned to the team last year. If Paxton accepted the 12-million-dollar contract, Ryu, who is one year older than him, is expected to receive an offer of 11 million to 13 million dollars for a one-year contract.
The Dodgers were actually able to recruit Ryu Hyun-jin, but by choosing Paxton, the possibility of Ryu Hyun-jin returning to “friendship” virtually disappeared.
Ryu Hyun-jin, who underwent Tommy John surgery in June 2022, returned in early August last year and pitched 52 innings in 11 games, recording 3 wins and 3 losses, 14 walks, 38 strikeouts, and 1.288 WHIP. Paxton pitched much more innings, but Ryu Hyun-jin was rather stable in terms of pitching.
Paxton became an FA after his two-year, $10 million contract with the Boston Red Sox ended after last season in December 2021.
Just like Ryu Hyun-jin, Paxton has a history of Tommy John Surgery. After undergoing surgery in April 2021, he returned to the club in May last year after nearly two years of rehabilitation, and pitched 96 innings in 19 games to mark seven wins and five losses, an ERA of 4.50, 33 walks, 101 strikeouts and a WHIP of 1.313. ESPN predicted Paxton’s expected contract worth 12 million dollars per year when the FA market opened in November last year.
Paxton was born in November 1988 and began his professional career after being drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the fourth round of the 2010 draft. He made his major league debut in 2013, moved to the New York Yankees in 2019, then returned to Seattle in 2021 for Tommy John surgery.
His heyday should be seen as 2017-2019 when he had double-digit wins for three consecutive years. He pitched in 156 games and recorded 64 wins and 38 losses with a 3.69 ERA.
The Dodgers needed five starters. The Dodgers, which acquired Yoshinobu Yamamoto and Tyler Glasnow during the offseason, had one to four starters including Walker Buehler, who finished rehabilitation at Tommy John Surgery, and Bobby Miller, a fireballer who made his Major League debut last year. On top of that, it appears that the team picked Paxton as its fifth starting agent.