Dodgers’ Stripling gets another shot at Angels

Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Ross Stripling is scheduled to make his second major league appearance against the Los Angeles Angels when they meet in the middle game of their three-game interleague series at Angel Stadium on Saturday evening.

He last faced the Angels just over two years ago in his first season with the Dodgers. That game likely stands out to Stripling because it’s the only time he hit a batter in 257 2/3 innings in the majors.

That miscue forced in a run and ended the night after 4 2/3 innings for Stripling, who had walked two other batters in the inning. The bullpen then gave up the lead with the inherited runners and Stripling took the loss in the 7-4 defeat at Angel Stadium.

Stripling (6-2, 2.27 ERA) has not only avoided hitting another batter since then, but has mastered his overall control, entering Saturday with 96 strikeouts and just 13 walks this season. His ERA is seventh best in the majors among pitchers with at least 12 starts.

Not bad for a pitcher whose first 10 appearances this season came out of the bullpen, where he’s 0-0 with a 0.59 ERA this season.

Stripling will try to get the Dodgers (47-40) back atop the NL West after Kenley Jansen blew a save in the series opener on Friday night and the Angels won 3-2. The Dodgers had taken over first place for the first time this season while idle on Thursday, but the Arizona Diamondbacks moved back into first with the Dodgers’ loss to the Angels (45-44).

Angels rookie David Fletcher continues to cement himself as a major leaguer. He drove in the tying run with a two-out pinch-hit single off Jansen, then scored the winning run from first on a check-swing single by Ian Kinsler, followed by a throwing error by Dodgers right-fielder Yasiel Puig.

“If I can help the team win, it’s a big deal,” Fletcher told FOX Sports West after the win.

Stripling knows he needs to be sharper on Saturday than he was in his last outing, when he allowed four runs and a season-high nine hits in six innings of a 6-4 victory against the visiting Colorado Rockies on Sunday.

Stripling told the Southern California News Group following the game that he didn’t believe he was getting fatigued. Stripling has thrown 83 1/3 innings this season, more than the 77 1/3 he logged last season, but less than the 104 1/3 he accumulated during the 2016 season.

“They’ve seen me throw 80 innings now this year,” he said. “I think they’ve got an idea what’s coming. I’ve just got to stay sharp.”

Angels center fielder Mike Trout faced Stripling twice on May 17, 2016, and had a solo homer and a two-run single.

Deck McGuire (0-1, 7.56) is scheduled to make his fourth appearance with the Angels after he was acquired from the Texas Rangers for cash considerations on June 19. Texas had claimed the 28-year-old McGuire from the Toronto Blue Jays a few days earlier.

He made two relief appearances for the Angels before making his first start on Sunday and allowed five runs and five hits in 3 1/3 innings of an 8-2 loss against the Baltimore Orioles.

McGuire was sent down to Triple-A Salt Lake following that game, but was recalled on Wednesday, the day Tyler Skaggs was scratched from his scheduled start on Thursday against the Seattle Mariners because of a strained abductor.

McGuire has never faced the Dodgers in his career.