Recently, the tearful goodbye came with former Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu when he signed with the Toronto Blue Jays. Obviously, it was a heartfelt loss amongst the Dodgers fan base.
By comparison, there is a ripple effect felt in the clubhouse amongst Ryu’s former teammates. Therefore, whom better to weigh-in what it’s like to lose a close teammate then Ross Stripling. Luckily, Strips did just that on the most recent episode of The Big Swing Podcast.
Ryu’s former teammates wish him well via social media. https://t.co/mhZYwl0oz4
— Dodgers Nation (@DodgersNation) December 28, 2019
Here is what Stripling says in regards to the departure of Ryu, which takes place around the 37:00 mark when asked about it by his co-host Cooper Surles:
“You have to be stoked for him. I think once I saw Dallas Kuechel’s deal I had a feeling Ryu would get a fourth year and a little more money. He has shown when healthy he’s as good as anyone in MLB. I’m excited for him and his wife, she’s awesome. While it’s a big change going from Los Angeles to Toronto, I’m sure they have a Koreatown and he will find it. He’s basically the LeBron James of Korea.”
In addition, it’s cool to hear Stripling talk about the fit that Ryu will have with Toronto and the dynamic he will provide in a different clubhouse.
“He will fit right in, that’s a young team. They will love having him. He’s just the happiest-go-lucky dude ever. We will miss him for sure both on and off the field. Obviously, I’m just really excited for him.”
Finally, Stripling brings up a great point when mentioning Ryu as ‘the LeBron James of Korea’. Perhaps it was this post that made me take a step back and realize what an icon he is in his home country. Without question, the Dodgers didn’t just lose an excellent pitcher; but also a big time presence across more than one country.