Ex-Dodgers prospect Ryan Pepiot’s dominant start in Colorado defied logic

Tampa Bay Rays v Colorado Rockies
Tampa Bay Rays v Colorado Rockies / Matthew Stockman/GettyImages

While LA was getting beat up by former Dodgers Michael Busch and Cody Bellinger in Chicago on Sunday, another former Dodger was making his return to the NL West with a start against the Rockies at Coors.

Ryan Pepiot was a key piece in the trade with the Rays that got Tyler Glasnow to LA. He was joined by Jonny DeLuca, but Pepiot was the more intriguing part of the package. He was a third-round draft picked who turned into a top prospect for the Dodgers, and the Rays have an infamous way of taking pitchers and turning them into beasts.

And Pepiot did look like a beast in his outing against the Rockies, giving the Dodgers a packed weekend of missing their former players. Pepiot defied all laws of Coors Field by pitching six innings and only giving up three hits while striking out 11 batters on the way.

Dodgers/Tyler Glasnow trade piece Ryan Pepiot dominates for the Rays at Coors Field

A changeup'll do that for you.

Coors is so notoriously a hitter's park (the Coors Effect exists for a reason) that players often get undervalued or underestimated if they spend too long with the Rockies, even if they're incredible. Larry Walker had to wait nine years after becoming eligible for the Hall of Fame to get in because he spent a decade in Colorado. Per Statcast, Coors has a park factor of 113, 13 over the average of 100 and the highest of any stadium in baseball. Between 2022-2024, it was also the second-worst park for strikeouts (behind Kauffman Stadium) while hitting stats dominated across the board.

The Rockies are a sad franchise, it's true, but Pepiot's outing was still mightily impressive given the confines he was working in. He needed it too; in his first start for the Rays on April 1, he went 5 2/3 innings and gave up four hits and six earned runs to Rangers batters while only striking out three.

On the flip side of the trade, Glasnow has been great for the Dodgers over three starts, already racking up 15 strikeouts. Like Busch, there probably wasn't going to be much light for Pepiot in the Dodgers' organization around all of the star offseason signings, so moving him was the best thing for his career. Hopefully he'll be able to make it out of Tampa Bay without falling prey to one of their discount contracts.