Dodgers News: Ross Stripling Enduring ‘Frustrating’ June At Camelback Ranch
Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Thus far into the season, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been forced to delve into unexpected arms in the farm system to combat the reoccurring injuries suffered by their starting pitchers.

Mike Bolsinger won the Spring-Training competition for the fifth-starter job, but lost his standing due to an oblique strain. In somewhat of a surprising move, the Dodgers named rookie right-hander Ross Stripling the fifth starter, beating out Carlos Frias.

In his first career start, Stripling threw 7.1 no-hit innings against the San Francisco Giants in a game the Dodgers lost, 3-2. Stripling went on to make seven more starts, accumulating a 2-3 record with a 4.53 ERA in 45.2 innings.

After undergoing Tommy John surgery two years ago, Los Angeles has monitored Stripling’s innings and pitch counts very carefully.

For the past month, Stripling has been at Camelback Ranch where he’s thrown bullpen sessions and one-inning appearances in extended Spring Training games.

The process has been monotonous, but Stripling understands the team’s ultimate goal of conserving his arm, per Ken Gurnick of

“We have this month to save innings, so we’re working on stuff when we can,” Stripling said. “It’s a frustrating month, one inning every five days and kind of hang out. Say I have 125 or 130 [maximum innings], and I’ve already eaten up 70-plus. The idea is to be fresh for the end of the year if they need an arm.”

Stripling has also used this time to focus on improving his conditioning:

“Since I was hitting the 85-pitch mark and really struggling, we’re using this month to get my legs strong so when I hit the 85th pitch it’s like my first pitch,” Stripling said. “While we have this month, that’s one thing we’re kind of focusing on.”

Stripling is expected to pitch in Arizona League games and eventually make his way back to the Triple-A Oklahoma City rotation. He threw three innings in one start for OKC prior to being placed on the disabled list as part of a paper move.

Stripling’s spot in the rotation has been filled by highly-coveted rookie Julio Urias, who’s workload has also been managed by the team. Urias is slated to start Wednesday, then make another turn, at which point the Dodgers will reevaluate his immediate future.