Ryu Hyun-jin will join the starting rotation of the Los Angeles Dodgers for the new season, according to the U.S. media on Monday.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts made the call after watching Ryu pitch in his fourth exhibition game of spring training in Glendale, Arizona. Ryu started against the Chicago White Sox on Monday, allowing five hits and three runs on two homers over five innings.
"I think Ryu is throwing well, he's built up enough and we feel confident enough that he'll be one of the five," said Roberts after the game. "He's given us no reason to not be. We feel that a healthy Hyun-Jin is a good thing. We expect him to be one of our five."
The first three spots in the starting rotation had already been filled by Clayton Kershaw, Rich Hill, and Kenta Maeda.
Roberts and the coaching staff were observing other pitchers to fill the remaining two spots during spring training. Ryu had a question mark over him as he had two surgeries -- one on his shoulder and one on his elbow -- and there were doubts whether he would ever recover his pre-surgery form.
In his four spring training outings, Ryu pitched 14 innings, allowing 10 hits and four runs, with a 2.57 ERA, earning the trust of the coaching staff.