Backup plan for the Braves, Padres, and Angels
While Hyun-Jin Ryu may not be the top priority for teams looking to sign Stephen Strasburg or Gerrit Cole, he makes a lot of sense as a backup plan. The Atlanta Braves are expected to pursue Madison Bumgarner but if they fail to land MadBum then they could turn their attention towards Ryu who is a similar type of pitcher. Hyun-Jin would bolster a young rotation for Atlanta.
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The Padres are setting their sights on San Diego native Stephen Strasburg and General Manager AJ Preller is going to try and convince Padre ownership to spend. If the Padres miss out on Strasburg then they are another team that is a great fit for Hyun-Jin Ryu. The Padres are seeking a top of the rotation starter which is exactly what Ryu is and he should come much cheaper than Strasburg.
The Angels are considered the favorite by many to land Gerrit Cole as they attempt to make a big splash after making Joe Maddon their new manager. In the event that the Angels strikeout on Cole, Hyun-Jin Ryu makes a lot of sense for the Halos who could sign Ryu and another starter like Wheeler for roughly the same annual rate as Gerrit Cole. The Angels also make sense for Ryu from a location standpoint if he wants to remain close to Los Angeles.
The Dodgers will likely avoid the high price of Gerrit Cole and Stephen Strasburg and look to sign a quality starter at a lower rate like Hyun-Jin Ryu. With Ryu unlikely to give a hometown discount with Scott Boras as his agent, the blue will face some heavy competition if they want to try and re-sign Hyun-Jin Ryu.