For the first time since 2009, a pitcher not named Clayton Kershaw will start the first game of the playoffs for the Dodgers.
tOn Tuesday night, announced Hyun-Jin Ryu will take the mound on Thursday, with On Tuesday night, the Dodgers announced that Hyun-jin Ryu will take the mound Thursday, with Kershaw getting the nod on Friday.
Nothing was ever official, but it was believed that Kershaw would get the start in Game 1, but the two pitchers will swap, assuring they each get an extra day of rest. During the season, Dodger pitching made the fifth lowest starts (50) in major league baseball with the traditional four days of rest.
Kershaw has started eight of the last nine Game 1 situations for the Dodgers since the 2009 NLCS. The only two not started by the lefty in the 2013 and 2016 NLCS were due to Kershaw starting the final game of the previous series.
Ryu was among one of the best pitchers in baseball during the month of September. He was 3-2 with a 1.50 ERA. In 30 innings, the lefty had 30 strikeouts, with a WHIP of 1.10. Over his last 15 games, Ryu is 7-3 with a 1.97 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP.
The 31-year-old has allowed just 12 runs in nine starts at Dodger Stadium, allowing no runs in five of those games.
For Ryu, this will be his first postseason start since 2014. In that game, he allowed one run in six innings versus the Cardinals. Though only making three career postseason starts, Ryu owns a 2.81 ERA with a 1.06 WHIP.