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Dodgers: Andrew Friedman Explains His Motivation For Trading Ross Stripling

In case you’re wondering why he was traded, Friedman explains.



From the moment that he came up to the big leagues, Ross Stripling didn’t have a specific role with the Dodgers. Stripling made the team in 2016 as a start after injuries decimated the pitching staff. He made his big league debut that year and pitched 7 1/3 innings of no-hit ball before being pulled.

A few months later, Ross was in the Dodgers bullpen again, bouncing back and forth between spot starts. It would remain that way with the team essentially for the next four years. Then came Ross’ opportunity to be a full-time starter with the team in 2020. Unfortunately, he didn’t perform quite like the All-Star we all knew he could be. 

Stripling was traded on Monday to Toronto for players to be named later. Dodgers President of Baseball Operations Andrew Friedman discussed the decision to move him, and why it was tough. 

From our standpoint, with Gonsolin coming back up, we made the decision going forward to put Tony in the rotation. With that, we didn’t feel comfortable moving Ross to the bullpen. We have a ton of professional and personal respect for Ross and believe that he is a major-league starting pitcher. And ultimately, we didn’t feel comfortable putting him in the bullpen, especially when, as we look out to next spring training, we felt like it was going to be difficult then as well…So as much as he’s helped us through the years, we felt like it was in everyone’s best interest with just the depth that we have right now and also caring about him.

Even though it comes down to a business decision for the Dodgers, Friedman admitted that it was a difficult one. Stripling has been with the team since they drafted him in 2012, and he will be missed greatly. Looking forward though, things were just working against him.

This was extremely difficult, moving Ross. He’s absolutely a major-league starting pitcher and a lot of it has been a function of just kind of timing. From our standpoint, as we look out to next year, we see a strong group that would have made it really difficult to give him any kind of assurances about next year. That was kind of more of the guiding light for us, coupled with the number of guys we have up here. Getting Woody and Buehler back soon and hopefully Joe (Kelly) and Petey (Baez) in a little bit, and just getting in front of that a little bit. But it certainly was not easy at all and he’s been a big part of what we’ve accomplished in the last four years.

Stripling finishes up his Dodgers career with a 3.68 ERA and a record of 23-25. He threw 420 2/3 innings and struck out 404 batters over his five-ish seasons. 

Andrew Friedman Discusses Ross Stripling Trade, Padres, Playoffs, and More

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. There has been some sentimentalism amongst all the algorhythms in the FO the last two years. Friedman as done right with both Maeda and Stripling by sending them to places where they could have more consistent roles. And he attempted to send Pedersen to the Angels last winter, which would have offered him a non-platooning situation. They were all good soldiers in the “mix and match” and it is good to see them treated fairly because of it.

  2. Reading between the lines, there was a reasonable chance that the Dodgers would not tender Stripling a contract for 2021

    • And Pedersen will also be allowed to leave in Free Agency without much effort to retain him. I suspect them to offer Turner a below market contract to return – especially if the DH sticks – and maybe they’ll try to re-up Treinen if he performs in October. But everyone else will be allowed to walk. And then the bloodbath after 2021 when decisions on Kershaw, Jansen, Pollock, Seager, Kelly and Taylor have to be made. One hopes the Dodgers will already have two more WS banners hanging before that comes!

  3. I still don’t like that they sent Ross packing. Are they sticking Urias because he’s young and has time to learn? How much time do you need? How long has he been a dodger? And finally, I don’t think Urias is that good, he hasn’t proven it to me. I hope( for Dodger’s sake) he does improve and does a lot better than he’s shown.

    • urias is better and has more upside than stripling. stripling had his chance this year,and just wasn’t getting it done. too many home runs from stripling. another maeda out there. gonsolin deserved to replace him. stripling seems like a good guy, but it was time to move on. they should’ve traded wood and put strip in the bullpen.

  4. With lots of home runs and few K’s he was not going to help this team. If this Williams kid is as good as they say then the trade was a good one. Have not heard a Buehler update since Roberts said he would return this week. That was a nice 6 innings from Urias. Hope he can keep it up. Alexander has given up 4 earned runs in his last 7 innings.

  5. Want to wish Good luck to Ross Stripling hope you have a great rest of the season. We’ll miss
    you I think u should have stayed with the Dodgers but then I’m just a fan.
    Thank you for your services. ??

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