Dodgers News: Gavin Stone Happy With Spring Training Performance

Gavin Stone earned the nod as the Los Angeles Dodgers’ fifth starter heading into the regular season, capping off an impressive Spring Training run and beating out Michael Grove, Ryan Yarbrough and Landon Knack for the final spot.

Making his final start of spring against the Los Angeles Angels, Stone tallied 4.1 innings pitched, allowing four runs. He posted a 3.21 ERA, 0.79 WHIP with 13 strikeouts in camp, and after his final outing, emphasized his positive numbers in the exhibition games.

“Good. I put in a lot of work in the offseason, so for the results to show up is huge,” Stone said. “You’ve just got to continue to do that.”

Stone didn’t mention there was anything of particular focus for his Freeway Series start, besides reaching the 71-pitch mark and how he feels physically.

“I felt great,” Stone said. “I feel like my command is way better on all my pitches. Like I said, just let two pitches get away from me.”

Stone made one mistake to Angels catcher Logan O’Hoppe, resulting in a three-run home run. While Dodgers manager Dave Roberts noted there wasn’t much scouting or game planning that went into the outing, Stone recognized the pitch as being a in poor spot.

“Just left it over the plate,” Stone said. “It should’ve been in. Just left it over the plate. Definitely want that one back. Other than that, I felt good.”

O’Hoppe’s home run was the only long ball Stone allowed in six Spring Training appearances (four starts). That includes an impressive performance during a Dodgers exhibition game in South Korea.

Now his view turns to the regular season when Stone is set to face the St. Louis Cardinals for his first turn in the rotation.

After struggling in his rookie season and falling off the radar for many, the 25-year-old is honored to earn the nod to start for the Dodgers.

“It means the world to me,” Stone said. “For Doc to come up and tell me was awesome. It was a huge moment. Very thankful for that and looking forward to taking advantage of it, for sure.”

Gavin Stone praised for ‘maturity’

Stone’s results and approach earned praise from Roberts, who came away impressed with Stone’s development as a pitcher.

“I think the thing that stands out most with Gavin is his maturity,” Roberts said.

Stone taking a step forward may also be related to addressing mechanics that fell out of line due to a toe issue, which also led to tipping pitches. His execution has also been a step above last year, showing improvements across the board in his sequencing.

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