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Ross Stripling tells the story of getting traded by the Dodgers

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“We just didn’t see it coming,” Stripling said. “The shock value hit hard.”

American League Wild Card Game 2: Toronto Blue Jays v. Tampa Bay Rays Photo by Mike Carlson/MLB Photos via Getty Images

Former Dodgers pitcher Ross Stripling talked on his podcast about the day he was traded to the Blue Jays, an emotional time for the right-hander leaving the organization he was with for eight years.

Stripling waited until his season was over before returning to record episodes for his Big Swing Podcast, along with co-host Cooper Surles. In this episode, Stripling gave insight into how he and his wife Shelby found out he was traded, on Aug. 31.

“A really big part of it was that we just didn’t see it coming. Ever since basically I’ve been drafted, we’ve been on high alert at the trade deadline. It always felt like it was an option, it could happen, but it never did,” Stripling said. “We were going about our day, it was an off day. The trade deadline had passed, so I started looking at Twitter, thinking, ‘Alright, what moves were made, what went down? The Dodgers were quiet, I can’t believe we didn’t do anything,’ or whatever. As I’m scrolling through Twitter, Andrew Friedman popped up on my phone.

“You just know instantly, that’s the only thing it could be. I showed it to my wife, and she goes pale, terror on her face, like she knows what it means too. We just didn’t see it coming. The shock value hit hard.”

Stripling was traded to Toronto for two players to be named later. One of those PTBNL was pitcher Kendall Williams, a 20-year-old who was drafted in the second round in 2019.

Andrew Friedman on the day of the trade deadline said that there was no room for Stripling in the Dodgers rotation, with the emergence of Tony Gonsolin and Dustin May this season, and that they felt Stripling deserved to be a starting pitcher somewhere in the majors.

Stripling on his podcast said he was thankful for Friedman for that, and described the Dodgers organization as top notch.

Now former teammates of Stripling with the Dodgers described him as one of the most popular players in the clubhouse. On his podcast, Stripling said that with the Dodgers off on August 31, the only player he got to say goodbye to in person was Corey Seager, who lived a few minutes away.

Stripling also described the logistical mayhem of leaving one team and joining another, and how it was bittersweet to leave the organization that drafted him.

“I go up early the next morning to Dodger Stadium — because I’m flying out later that day — to pack up my stuff. Really, no one’s there yet. Our chef is there, some of our bullpen catchers, a few people I get to say goodbye to but no players,” Stripling said. “I remember packing up my stuff and walking out of the stadium, and tears are in my eyes. My wife ready to pick me up, there’s tears in her eyes. We had this big emotional moment in the parking lot at Dodger Stadium.

“It was kind of a weird feeling, because you know the opportunity ahead of you is awesome and very exciting, and going to be great for my career. But it also feels very much like the end of an era, a very sad moment.”

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