Ross Stripling Learns a Valuable Lesson in Communication


Ross Stripling pitching for Chattanooga last year.

The fifth round pick in the 2012 draft entered the game against the Diamondbacks on Wednesday, facing 10 batters allowing 5 hits, a run and a strike out, and he already had an injury in his elbow. The only problem was no one knew about it; not Mattingly, not a trainer, no one.

“Five or six days ago he had some stuff going on and didn’t let anybody know. In the game the other day he felt it again,” said manager Don Mattingly two days after the game. The manager then went on to stress the importance of the communication and said that with young players especially we need to know what’s going on.

The problem is, for the players, they think that they can manage it them selves and they don’t want any one to know so that they don’t get pulled out of the game or looked at differently. That needs to be addressed from the management staff.

Ross left the Dodgers camp at Camelback Ranch for an MRI on his elbow on Friday afternoon.

He was facing Joc Pederson in the cage for the first time since the off season and they were having a bit of fun but his elbow just wasn’t ready for it as he started throwing cutters and putting more strain on his elbow.

“When I first went out to warm up it felt really tight,” Stripling said about the game on Wednesday, “Then it loosened up pretty good. I think I kind of got some adrenalin going.

“I was sore all week but I didn’t tell any of the coachers or staff, that was a mistake.”

By Thursday, the day after the game, Ross’ elbow tightened up so badly that he could hardly throw. This is when he finally told Stan Conte, the Dodgers head trainer.

Now Ross Stripling is at mercy of an MRI that he has had and hopes it goes well. That being said if it is a UCL tare like first thought he wouldn’t have got much past 80mph in his innings, which he did.

The irony of all this is that his name, Stripling, means “to not tell” as in what he did with his injury. An example being, “Hey Ross, you’re stripling me. ”

Going 6-4 in 2013 with a 2.78 ERA at Double-A Chattanooga. He didn’t get an invite to last year’s camp but managed his way into this year’s with 83 strikeouts and just 19 walks in 94 innings. The 24-year-old was rated the team’s seventh best prospect by Baseball Prospectus and also 10th best by Baseball America in the recent offseason.


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