Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling says players are working out in smaller groups to stay in shape during the coronavirus shutdown.
As Major League Baseball players await a possible start date to the 2020 season, the trick has been how to stay in shape, especially for pitchers. They don’t want to get ramped up too soon, and then have to wait weeks for the season begin, but they don’t want to slow their routines too much, either, in case they are asked to be ready in a short timeframe.
Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling says most players are working out like a normal offseason, just in smaller groups.
“You know, the CDC probably doesn’t want to hear it, but I think most of us are still working out as if it’s a normal offseason,” Stripling said on the Fantasy Baseball Today Podcast, transcribed by CBS Sports. “You know, as if it’s January 1st, like I’m still able to go into the gym. We’re just doing it in smaller groups. You know, when normally you might workout in four or five, six at a time in the offseason. Right now, we’re working out two at a time.”
When he’s not working out, Stripling has been keeping busy by hosting Live from the Sunset Strip on Instagram Live for the Dodgers each week. He has interviewed teammates Cody Bellinger and Enrique Hernandez.
The 30-year-old right hander almost found himself in Anaheim this offseason, but a trade that would have sent him and Joc Pederson to the Angels fell through after the Mookie Betts deal was renegotiated.
Stripling is coming off back-to-back strong seasons with the Dodgers, serving as a swingman between the bullpen and starting rotation. Last year, he appeared in 32 games, 15 of which were starts, and pitched to a 3.47 ERA and 4.65 K/BB ratio. He made his first All-Star team in 2018 when he sort of appeared out of nowhere to become a starter for manager Dave Roberts.
Before Spring Training was shutdown, Stripling appeared in four Cactus League games and looked good. He allowed one hit, walked one, and struck out four in 3.1 innings of work.
Whenever the season returns, the Pennsylvania native’s role on the team will carry added importance as pitching staffs will be stretched thin over what will most certainly be a compressed schedule. His ability to act as a starter and reliever will provide Roberts added security in case he needs to employ a six-man rotation during the season.