“100 out of 100″…Ryu Hyun-jin’s new weapon, the ‘106.5 mph’ rainbow curve, recognized by ML pitching experts

“100 out of 100”

Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Hyun-jin Ryu started against the Cincinnati Reds on April 21 바카라사이트(ET) at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati, Ohio, giving up two runs (unearned) on four hits and one walk with seven strikeouts over five innings of work, throwing 83 pitches.

Ryu, who was 5-2 with a 3.23 ERA in his career against Cincinnati prior to this game, continued his dominance of the Reds’ offense. After picking up his first win in 444 days with five innings of two-run (unearned) ball in his last outing, Ryu has now won two straight games for the first time in 451 days since May 27 of last year. He also lowered his season ERA from 2.57 to 1.89.

After holding Cincinnati’s top lineup to a triple in the first inning, Ryu ran into trouble in the second. It was a flurry of defensive errors. Ryu gave up his first hit of the night on a three-pitch four-seam fastball to Spencer Steer, who led off the inning with a double, and Christian Elkanazion-Stand followed with a single to put runners on first and third. From there, it was a series of unfortunate situations.

Ryu got Noelby Marte to fly out to left field with runners on first and third, and left fielder Dalton Basho made a strong shoulder play to throw out the runner at third. Basho’s throw to Matt Chapman to pick off the runner at second sailed into center field, allowing two runners to cross the plate.

Ryu Hyun-jin of the Toronto Blue Jays./Getty Images Korea

The mistake didn’t end there. Ryu induced a grounder to first base from T.J. Pridgen, and it looked like the offense was back on track. This time, however, first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. couldn’t quite get the ball to Ryu as he covered the base, and Ryu got Luke Miley to fly out to right field to end the long inning.

But with the offense behind him, Ryu continued to pitch solidly. He kept Cincinnati scoreless with a pair of strikeouts in the third inning, and continued his cruise in the fourth by retiring the next three batters he faced – Joey Votto, Encarnacion-Stand, and Marte.

They got out of the jam on their own. Back-to-back singles by Pridle and Miley in the fifth inning put runners on first and second with no outs, but Ryu held firm, striking out T.J. Hopkins, getting Matt McClain to fly out to center field, and getting Eli de la Cruz to ground out to end the game. The bats came through for him and he picked up his second win of the season.

Ryu Hyun-jin of the Toronto Blue Jays./Getty Images Korea

Since returning from Tommy John surgery, Hyun-jin Ryu has been reducing the percentage of his cutter and increasing the frequency of his curveball, and it shined on this day. Ryu induced seven swings and three misses (43%) on 16 pitches on the day, with three of his seven strikeouts coming on curves.

Ryu’s curveball shined twice on the day. Ryu threw a 66.2 mph (106.5 km/h) curveball to Eli De La Cruz for a swinging strikeout in the bottom of the third inning, and a 66.8 mph (107.5 km/h) curveball to De La Cruz in the bottom of the fifth inning with runners on first and second for a groundout.

Major League Baseball pitching analyst Rob Friedman, who runs Pitching Ninja, praised Ryu’s curveball on social media, posting a video of Ryu striking out De La Cruz in the bottom of the fourth inning with the caption, “Ryu’s beautiful 66-mile-per-hour curveball,” along with a rainbow emoji.

Ryu himself was very pleased with his curveball on the day. According to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Canada’s Sportsnet, when asked how he would rate his curveball today, Ryu said, “I’d give it a 100 out of 100.” Originally, Ryu’s curveball was a very good pitch. But since returning from injury, his curveball has gotten even better, to the point where it could be his “go-to” weapon.

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