Dodgers name Ross Stripling fifth starter

The mystery of who will be the Dodgers’ fifth starter to open the 2016 season has been solved:

Ross Stripling, who was the Dodgers’ fifth-round draft pick in 2012, experienced a setback when Tommy John surgery forced him to miss the entire 2014 season. He returned to action in June 2015, making one start with the Great Lakes Loons before being promoted to Double-A Tulsa, where he made 13 starts. In 67.1 innings pitched with the Drillers, Stripling posted an ERA of 3.88 and a nearly-identical FIP of 3.86. In addition, he recorded a WHIP of 1.19, a K/9 of 7.35, and a BB/9 of 2.54.

Reports that Mike Bolsinger would miss the start of the season indicated that the spot could go to Zach Lee, Carlos Frias or Brandon Beachy. Yesterday, however, Dave Roberts announced that Frias or Stripling would land the role. A good spring for Stripling — 11 IP, 1.09 WHIP, and 11 strikeouts vs. 4 walks — appear to have earned him his big league debut.

With the Stripling announcement came the news that Frias was optioned to Triple-A, and will start the season with the Oklahoma City Dodgers. Lee, who was optioned to minor league camp on March 20 (though he did make a start for the big club on Saturday), will pitch in tonight’s exhibition game vs. the Angels.

In addition to the Stripling news, Shaikin also provided this information on the Dodger bullpen:

Which means Pedro Baez and Yimi Garcia have made the team. They both had options and there was a chance one of them could end up in Triple-A in favor of Louis Coleman (no options) Luis Avilan (options). But with Avilan’s struggles this spring, he could find himself in Oklahoma City to start the season.

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In other news, earlier in the week, Brandon Beachy, Rico Noel, and Elian Herrera were all re-assigned, bringing the total amount of players still with the team to 35. However, there are a lot less decisions to be made than that number implies due to things like Alex Guerrero being placed on the disabled list and a few non-roster invitees still being with the team just in case.

About Sarah Wexler

Sarah Wexler
Sarah Wexler is a native Angeleno and longtime Dodger fan. She began blogging about baseball in 2012 on her Tumblr, New Grass On The Field, where she covered an array of topics but especially enjoyed exploring baseball history. She is now a reporter/producer for MLB.com. She earned her master's degree in Sports Management from Cal State Long Beach. She graduated from New York University in 2014 with a bachelor's in History and a minor in American Studies. She's an avid Springsteen fan, which is a big boost to her baseball writer cred.