On this episode of “Dugout Blues,” Jared Massey (Dodger Blue) and I welcome back to the program Mr. Ross Stripling. It’s his fourth (!) visit. He’ll never admit this publicly, but we have some incriminating photos of him to get him to be our guest that many times.
Stripling talks about his first big league season, the no-hit bid in his debut, what he’s looking forward to in 2017 and much, much more. He’s an all-around great guy and we’re definitely rooting for him. Oh, and he did this interview on his day to pitch and promptly went out and threw three innings of 1-run (unearned) ball and struck out four Mariner hitters.
Clayton Kershaw is human, as he gave up three home runs in his last spring outing. But don’t be alarmed. It’s still March. He’s going to be just fine.
Julio Urias has (had?) strep throat. It sucks. He probably wasn’t going to break camp with the team anyway (solely because the Dodgers want to control his workload), and that’s the right decision.
Andre Ethier is back. Well, he was when we were recording. He’s going for an MRI on his hip. If he’s out, Trayce Thompson and/or Andrew Toles stand to benefit. If Ethier is healthy at some point, the starting gig in left field against righties is his to lose.
Hyun-Jin Ryu is pitching well. It’s surprising, mostly because he hasn’t pitched competitively on a consistent basis for almost two years. I’d still be surprised if he breaks camp with the team, but the early returns are encouraging.
Corey Seager is still out. He missed a lot of time during Spring Training last year and went on to play the most games and have the most plate appearances of anyone on the club. I’m not overly concerned, but the fact this back issue hasn’t gone away yet is at least a tad concerning.
If Seager isn’t healthy to start the season, that would open the door for Enrique Hernandez or Chris Taylor. I’m going to write an article about this Spring Training position “battle,” but I’d go with Taylor over Hernandez because he’s the superior defender in the infield — specifically, shortstop.
We end with a Q&A session. Please keep them coming. We enjoy answering them.
Look for new episodes of “Dugout Blues” every Monday. Don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast and review us on iTunes. We want to make this the best podcast we can so we’re always looking for suggestions and ways to improve.
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