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Dodgers continue spending binge, sign Korean pitcher Ryu Hyun-jin

By Dylan Hernandez, Los Angeles Times Published: December 10, 2012

During a news conference at Boras' offices last month, Ryu said he had no doubt he could be effective in the major leagues.

“Obviously, there's pressure in all levels of baseball,” Ryu said through an interpreter. “But from my experiences in Korea, I have no doubt I could succeed in the United States.”

Listed by the Dodgers at 6-foot-1 and 215 pounds, Ryu is said to throw a low-90s fastball with an assortment of off-speed pitches.

Ryu pitched twice at Dodger Stadium in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, appearing in the semifinal and final as a reliever. South Korea was the runner-up in that tournament, won by Japan.

He almost didn't get the chance to return to Los Angeles, reaching agreement with the Dodgers with less than a minute remaining in their negotiating window, which closed at 2 p.m. PST Sunday. Had the two sides failed to strike a deal by then, Ryu would have returned to the Eagles and the Dodgers would have been refunded their posting fee.

Considering they paid $25.7 million for the right to negotiate with him, the Dodgers wanted Ryu under contract for as long as possible. Boras wanted his client to be able to test the free-agent market while still in the prime of his career.

They reached a compromise by including a clause in the contract that will allow Ryu to elect free agency after five seasons, provided he has pitched 750 innings.

Ryu can earn an additional $1 million a year in performance-based incentives. The Dodgers will provide him with a translator and promised him jersey No. 99, last worn by Manny Ramirez. Ryu wore No. 99 with the Eagles.

Ryu's contract does not include a no-trade clause. Greinke's doesn't, either.

Distributed by MCT Information Services

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