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Hyun-jin Ryu considering shoulder sugery, could be out for season

Rick Scuteri-USA TODAY Sports

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers could be without Hyun-jin Ryu for the remainder of the season, with shoulder surgery possible for the left-hander as soon as this week, per multiple reports.

A report from Naver in South Korea says Ryu will have left shoulder surgery on Thursday (Friday in South Korea), while Hankooki in South Korea reports Ryu is out for the season and confirmed with his Korean management, A-SPEC corporation.

Meanwhile, a source tells Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports that Ryu is considering surgery, and that Ryu has not yet determined his choice. Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman confirmed in a conference call Tuesday that surgery was an option for Ryu.

"It's been two weeks but just hasn't progressed as quickly as we all hoped. He's worked extremely hard to get back, but it isn't happening as quickly as he would have liked. It's not a totally clear, black-and-white issue. It's more involved than that," Friedman said. "Everybody is putting their heads together trying to figure out what makes the most sense."

But the fact that Ryu is even thinking about surgery as an option doesn't bode well for his chances of contributing anything, if at all, in 2015.

The Dodgers are expected to have an update on Ryu on Wednesday.

"Mentally I have been thinking [that Ryu won't pitch again this season] for a little while because it's more helpful to err on that side," Friedman said. "But it's been an ongoing process the last couple months, with peaks and valleys throughout. But our mindset has been treating it as if he's not [going to pitch] because it's easier to react the other way."

For what it's worth, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports described the procedure considered by Ryu as a "clean up."

Ryu last pitched in a game on March 18 during spring training, and was building up toward throwing to hitters but was shut down after his velocity was down during a May 1 bullpen session at Dodger Stadium.

He hasn't thrown since.

"We're in the question mark phase of when he will throw again," manager Don Mattingly said on Friday. "We don't have a date."

The Dodgers are already without Brandon McCarthy through midseason 2016 after Tommy John surgery on April 30. So far, their current replacements — Mike Bolsinger and Carlos Frias — have combined to go 4-0 with a 2.14 ERA in six starts, with 28 strikeouts and nine walks in 33⅔ innings.

"Anytime you lose two starters, you're always mindful of your depth," Friedman said. "If we can add an arm, it would certainly be helpful."

Ryu is making $4.5 million this season, then gets $7 million per year from 2016-2018. He can opt out after 2017 and become a free agent if he reaches 750 innings from 2013-2017, but missing the rest of 2015 would severely cripple those chances. Ryu pitched 344 innings from 2013-2014 and would need to average 203 innings per season in 2016-2017 to reach that clause.

[thanks to @blackwings2011 and @MyKBO for help with the translation]