The Los Angeles Dodgers starting rotation was in great shape going into the National League Championship Series, with each starter throwing one game in the Division Series and getting extra rest between respective starts.
Hyun-Jin Ryu threw Game 1 of the NLDS, but the Dodgers decided to flip the script in the NLCS by pitching Clayton Kershaw in Game 1, slating Ryu for Game 2 on Saturday afternoon.
Ryu said that he found out early which day he would be pitching, so he was able to get a rare bullpen session in to stay fresh between starts. “Obviously we have a great pitcher, Clayton Kershaw, so I was also wondering whether I was going to go second or third. I found out a couple of days ago, so I was able to prepare accordingly,” Ryu said.
“Got a little bullpen session in there as well, so I think I’m ready to go.”
When Ryu takes the mound on Saturday it will be nine days after his Game 1 NLDS start when he tossed seven shutout innings against the Atlanta Braves. That will be his longest layoff since he came back from a groin injury in July, which prompted Ryu to uncharacteristically throw a bullpen session.
“When I was in my rehab sessions, when I hurt my groin, that was when I threw my bullpen session last,” he said.
The big difference for Ryu in his start against the Milwaukee Brewers compared to his NLDS outing, other than the amount of rest he has had heading in, is that this one will be on the road.
It is well-documented how much more success Ryu has had at home compared to away from Dodger Stadium this season, so it will be interesting to see if that plays a factor at all on Saturday at Miller Park or if he can continue to keep rolling as he has for much of the 2018 season.
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