Report: Braves have shown interest in Ryu

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According to Jon Heyman, the Braves have shown interest in Hyu-Jin Ryu, though the level of interest is unknown:

Ryu to the Braves seems unlikely, as they recently allocated free-agent dollars to Cole Hamels, and it appears they will give Sean Newcomb another crack at the rotation. Perhaps if they went the trade route at third base, they could allocate these dollars to another starter, but they are currently in a bidding war to retain Josh Donaldson. I wouldn’t hold my breath on Ryu to Atlanta, and many believe he will return to the Dodgers. The Braves also already have three lefties projected for the rotation, though Ryu would theoretically take Newcomb’s spot.

Ryu only had 24 starts in 2017 and missed half of 2018. However, his half of baseball was some of the best in the majors, posting a 1.97 ERA in 15 starts. Finally, this past season, he was healthy for the majority of the year, throwing the most innings since his rookie season back in 2013 and leading baseball in ERA with a 2.32 mark. He was a Cy Young candidate and has arguably been the most underrated ace in baseball over the past two years.

Regression was going to hit him eventually after one of the best starts to a season in MLB history, and he was not quite as good in the season’s second half, but that does not change the fact Ryu has elite stuff, even if his fastball sits in the low 90s. He would offer Atlanta’s rotation a boost, but a cleanup hitter is a much bigger need currently. However, if they “strike out” completely at third base and have to platoon Johan Camargo and Austin Riley, perhaps they will look to become a pitching-first team with the remaining funds.

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