Dodgers Rumors: Scouts View Kendall Williams As Potential Ace
View of a Los Angeles Dodgers cap on the mound in the bullpen at Dodger Stadium
Robert Beck/Sports Illustrated

The Los Angeles Dodgers were connected to some of the biggest names at the 2020 MLB trade deadline, but wound up moving forward with a smaller deal, sending Ross Stripling to the Toronto Blue Jays for prospect Kendall Williams and a second player to be named later.

Selected by the Blue Jays in the second round (No. 52 overall) of the 2019 MLB Draft, Williams was ranked their No. 13 overall prospect by MLB Pipeline.

The right-hander has a fastball that can reach the mid-90s and flashes a curveball that some believe could emerge as a dominant secondary pitch. He also throws a slider and has some feel for a changeup that remains in development.

Still just 20 years old, it’s no surprise that the Dodgers were thrilled to acquire a pitcher of Williams’ ilk. According to Jon Heyman of MLB Network, scouts additionally are enamored with Williams and consider him a potential frontline-caliber pitcher:

Before it was announced that Williams would head to L.A., Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman spoke highly of him. “We are definitely getting a guy we like and feel like will fit in really well with our next crop of prospects that are coming,” he said.

Williams is expected to be added to the Dodgers’ player pool, but Friedman cautioned that it will “take a little bit of time” before he is Major League-ready.

Williams allowed just two runs in 16 innings across six games (five starts) last year for the Blue Jays’ rookie level affiliate. With the Minor League Baseball season being cancelled due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, he hasn’t been able to build off his impressive showing from a year ago.

Stripling thanks Dodgers fans, former teammates after trade to Blue Jays

In his first comments since being traded to the Blue Jays, Stripling took to Instagram to voice his appreciation for Dodgers fans, former teammates and the organization as a whole.

The right-hander went a combined 23-25 with a 3.68 ERA and 404 strikeouts in 143 games (59 starts) across five seasons with the Dodgers. He was selected by the team in the fifth round of the 2012 Draft.

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