As the big-league club continues to put the finishing touches on its 2022 Opening Day roster, the minor league affiliates are following suit.
The Triple-A Oklahoma City Dodgers announced on Sunday that 24-year-old righty Ryan Pepiot will take the mound at home on Tuesday night against the Albuquerque Isotopes at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. Broadcaster Alex Freedman also reported that 25-year-old right-hander Andre Jackson will start Thursday’s game, but he gave no indication who might start the second game on Wednesday night.
Early in camp, it looked like Mitch White might be a contender for the OKC rotation, but it appears that the 27-year-old San Jose native could be a legitimate contender for a big-league roster spot, especially since MLB clubs will open the year with 28 players on their active rosters.
The 31-year-old Erlin has appeared in 115 games in the majors, most recently pitching for the Braves in 2020. Last year, the southpaw spent the season in Japan throwing for the Nippon Ham Fighters. Duplantier is a 27-year-old righty who made four starts for the Braves last year, going 0-3 with a whopping 13.15 ERA.
Burrows, 25, was selected by the Detroit Tigers with the No. 22 overall pick in the 2015 MLB Draft. The righty made his MLB debut with the Tigers in 2020 and pitched to a 5.40 ERA across five appearances while making just one start last year. The Dodgers signed Burrows to a minors deal during the lockdown in late November.
Ramirez falls into the boat with other guys like Carson Fulmer and Mike Wright, who could end up going as either a starter or a reliver. Ramirez made 22 starts for OKC last season and ended up getting his MLB debut with the Dodgers in relief against the Diamondbacks last August.
If White ends up making the big-league active roster, it most likely means that Jackson could be the first arm the team calls up if there’s a need for starting pitching, at least until David Price is ready or the league decides what will happen with Trevor Bauer.
There could be more starting pitching options as veterans like Danny Duffy and Jimmy Nelson eventually get healthy. Yesterday, we talked about Dustin May’s potential contributions if he’s able to return later in the summer.
Bobby Miller, one of the organization’s top prospects and the starter in the Freeway Series finale against the Angels Tuesday, is likely to begin his season at Double-A Tulsa alongside other blue chippers like Landon Knack and Michael Grove.