Ryu Flu sends Angels to bed with 3-0 shutout

It has to be a great pitching performance to take Luis Cruz’ first home run of the season off the headline, but Hyun-Jin Ryu delivered.

In the best start of what has been a sterling debut as a Dodger, Ryu allowed two hits and no walks over nine innings, striking out seven and retiring 19 in a row at one point, in pitching the Dodgers to a 3-0 victory over the Angels.

The Dodgers have won two games in a row for the first time since May 14-15 against Washington.

Lowering his ERA to 2.89, Ryu simply dazzled, and seemed to get better as the game went on. A two-out, eighth-inning double by Chris Iannetta ended the 19-in-a-row streak that followed Howie Kendrick’s second-inning single, but on Ryu’s 101st pitch of the game, Cruz charged a slow grounder by J.B. Shuck and fielded it cleanly on the shorthop to end the threat and prevent the tying run from coming to the plate.

The play capped a whale of a night for Cruz, who has been hitting pop-ups all season but finally showed some pop, breaking a scoreless tie in the fifth with a two-run homer off former Dodger Joe Blanton. Cruz last homered 90 at-bats ago, September 30 against Colorado.

In the sixth, A.J. Ellis followed a Matt Kemp double with an RBI single to give the Dodgers their three-run lead.

After that, it was the Ryu show. His previous career high in innings was 7 1/3 in his last start (May 22 at Milwaukee) and in pitches was 114 on May 11 against Miami. He came out for the ninth, and began it by striking out pinch-hitter Brendan Harris, then retired Erick Aybar on a grounder to third. Superstar Mike Trout, trying to keep the game alive, grounded to Mark Ellis at second base, and with 113 pitches, Ryu had his first career complete game and shutout in the States.

  • http://marioluevanos.com Mario Luevanos

    What a turn of events. I know it’s only a two-game winning streak, but… let’s keep it focused blue. Keep charging forward.

  • Onlyatriple

    Yes! Two wins in a row for the Dodgers and two posts from Jon today. Off topic, but why did AZ play a doubleheader against the Rangers yesterday, no game tonight, and then another game with them tomorrow? This seems really odd.

    • Anonymous

      The teams thought it would be better to play a doubleheader than try to fly overnight after a night game in Phoenix to play in Arlington the next day.

      • Onlyatriple

        As opposed to a night game the next day, which would have avoided the need for a doubleheader. Strange. Is this home and home exchange (like what the Dodgers and Angels are doing) being played out across all the interleague matches this week?

        • Anonymous

          the Wednesday game is a night game. the schedule was day game and night game on Memorial Day in AZ, no game Tuesday, night game in TX on Wed., day game in TX on Thursday

          all teams are playing 2 and 2; furthest apart Seattle and San Diego

  • Anonymous

    I’ll take the hit for being the in game jinx yesterday. No more during game comments from me. Great game tonight.

  • Adam Luther

    These next several games will be crucial for the Dodgers…2 w/ LAA then at Colorado. Next up, the longest home stand (10 games) of the season which includes four with the Braves. Ramirez looks to be on target to return for that home stand…

  • http://underdog.typepad.com/ underdog

    Was there enough gritty gamer-ness on display for unnamed rival executive tonight? ;)

    Ryu was superb.

    A pleasure to watch his craftsmanship at work.

    Now if they just split the two in Anaheim I’ll be happy camper.

  • Anonymous

    Did Cruz resist the urge to start doing push-ups when he popped up–err, homered?

    • foul tip

      Wonder if some of his struggles have come from trying to hit the long ball?

      His dad got after him late last season when he slumped after hitting a few HRs. Asked him: “What? So you’re a home run hitter now?” He admitted it had become a problem, said he knew better.

      If he can turn it around he can contribute. But not as much of a power threat.

  • foul tip

    Amid all the early questions about Ryu’s not pitching between starts (as was his custom in Korea), mediocre velocity, and other rumblings, he said he’d get stronger and pick up velocity as the season went on.

    Well, Gameday had him at 95 one pitch last night, 94 a couple others, and several 93s. And most of those were later in the game.

    Sometimes the best thing management can do with a new situation (Ryu) is have confidence, let it alone, see if it works out, and then be regarded as geniuses if it does. Except….genius might be a gag word to try to apply to some in Dodger management. Fit in the same sentence it does not, says Yoda.

    Ryu also said he hoped to be ROY. Sure didn’t hurt that campaign last night. And hoped to have an ERA in the 2s, which after last night he does. Let’s hope he keeps it there.

  • Anonymous

    Great game last night. Ryu was a joy to watch. And his Korean fans at Dodger Stadium energize the rest of the crowd. Short, sweet, and satisfying win.

  • Anonymous

    Ryu is a joy to watch-a bonus above what I has been led to expect.

  • Anonymous

    So happy to see Dodgers with another player to carry on the mantle of Who Ryu. This needs to be his walk-up music.

  • http://www.dodgerthoughts.com/ Jon Weisman

    NPUT