In their first split-squad action of 2019 Spring Training, the Los Angeles Dodgers dropped a road affair to the Cleveland Indians, 8-4, not long after also losing to the San Diego Padres at Camelback Ranch.
The Dodgers took a lead in the second inning, only for the Indians to respond with seven unanswered runs. Of course, results of games aren’t at the forefront of team’s minds as players continue to ramp up for the regular season.
With that, Ross Stripling made his first start of the year and fared well. Stripling allowed a pair of singles but worked a 1-2-3 second inning and finished with three strikeouts over two scoreless innings.
He’s being built up as a starter for the time being, with the Dodgers not expecting to make a decision on a permanent role until the middle of the month.
Caleb Ferguson also made his spring debut, but was knocked around by the Indians. He immediately allowed consecutive singles in the third inning and later hit a batter to load the bases with one out.
Carlos Santana’s two-run single tied the game and Roberto Perez gave Cleveland a 4-2 lead by driving in two more runs on a base hit before Ferguson could get out of the inning. Yu Chang then led off the bottom of the fifth, and Ferguson would have given up another run if not for Alex Verdugo throwing out Ernie Clement at home plate.
Dennis Santana got through two innings of work, collecting four strikeouts but also allowing a solo home run. Mitchell White failed to get through an inning, as a walk and two singles loaded the bases with nobody out in the seventh. He picked up a strikeout but a groundout scored a run.
At the plate, the Dodgers were limited to benefitting from an Indians throwing error that brought a run in during the second inning, and Gavin Lux’s RBI triple gave them a 2-0 lead at the time. It wasn’t until the Indians had jumped out ahead that L.A. managed to get more going.
Keibert Ruiz cashed in a bases-loaded situation in the eighth inning with a two-run single that cut the deficit to 7-4, but the Dodgers never drew any closer.