Andrew Friedman: Ross Stripling, Dustin May & Tony Gonsolin Candidates To Fill Out Dodgers’ Starting Rotation
Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling in Game 4 of the 2019 NLDS
Geoff Burke/USA TODAY Sports

The starting rotation is expected to be an area of focus for the Los Angeles Dodgers this offseason, as a pair of key contributors in Hyun-Jin Ryu and Rich Hill became free agents.

Coming off a career year in which he finished second in National League Cy Young Award voting, Ryu’s reported preference is staying put with the Dodgers. But in the event he commands a more lucrative contract elsewhere, L.A. could turn to other appealing options.

The Dodgers are said to be one of the three most probable destinations for Gerrit Cole, along with the New York Yankees and Los Angeles Angels. Stephen Strasburg may be a possibility, although there is a belief that the Washington Nationals will ultimately re-sign him.

The Dodgers could also look in-house to fill out the vacancies in their starting rotation. Kenta Maeda is expected to return to the unit after once again thriving as a reliever in the postseason, while Tony Gonsolin and Dustin May are logical candidates as well.

Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman revealed that Ross Stripling will additionally receive an opportunity to earn a spot in the starting rotation, via Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:

Friedman said Ross Stripling, who bounced between the rotation and bullpen in 2019, would have a chance to compete for a rotation spot. Prospects Dustin May and Tony Gonsolin are also in the mix.

Since making his MLB debut in 2016, Stripling has found a knack as a swingman for the Dodgers, transitioning back and forth from the starting rotation to the bullpen. 52 of his 136 career appearances have come as a starter while the other 84 games saw him enter as a reliever.

In 32 appearances during the 2019 season — 15 of which were starts — Stripling posted a 4-4 record, 3.47 ERA, 3.47 FIP and 1.15 WHIP with 93 strikeouts against 20 walks across 90.2 innings pitched.

The 29-year-old received the bulk of his starts in April and July, while the rest of his 2019 campaign consisted of him receiving opportunities in the bullpen. He closed out the year as a reliever and was included on the Dodgers’ National League Division Series roster, where he made just one appearance against the Washington Nationals in Game 4.

Gonsolin and May each received opportunities to start and pitch out of the bullpen this past season. May ultimately earned a spot on the NLDS roster as a relief pitcher.

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