Ryu has season-ending surgery on shoulder
Dodgers expect left-hander to be ready for Spring Training 2016
SAN FRANCISCO -- Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu underwent season-ending left shoulder surgery for a torn labrum Thursday morning and should be ready for Spring Training, manager Don Mattingly said.
"Stan [Conte, VP of medical services] was optimistic and upbeat," said Mattingly. "For someone that had to have surgery, it sounded like a good result. He should be OK for next year."
Mattingly said he believes the surgery was essentially a cleanup procedure and Ryu will be ready for Spring Training.
Team surgeon Dr. Neal ElAttrache performed the procedure on Ryu, who has pitched more than 1,600 innings over the past decade, mostly in Korea.
The degree of Ryu's tear (and presumably any accompanying damage) is being portrayed by the club as relatively minor. By comparison to the high rate of return to success for Tommy John patients, the record of pitchers returning from shoulder labrum operations to reclaim their prior form is checkered.
The injury was once considered career-ending, but recent medical advances have improved the chances.
Comeback stories range from successes Roger Clemens and Curt Schilling to unfortunate endings like Jason Schmidt, Mark Prior and Mark Mulder. The most recent successful return from the operation is Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda.
Ryu joins Brandon McCarthy (Tommy John surgery) to put 40 percent of the Dodgers' starting rotation on the shelf. Ryu is signed through 2018.
Ryu was sidelined by shoulder tightness twice last year with the impingement, which at the time was listed by the club as irritation. It cropped up again after his second Spring Training start in March. A cortisone injection didn't resolve the discomfort.
The Dodgers have given five Minor Leaguers a starting chance. Carlos Frias and Mike Bolsinger have emerged as the current fourth and fifth starters behind Clayton Kershaw, Zack Greinke and Brett Anderson.
Club president Andrew Friedman said on Tuesday that he is looking to trade for a starting pitcher. Another possible option is Brandon Beachy, who is recovering from a second Tommy John operation.