Originally published by DodgerBlue.com
The 2020 MLB Draft was unlike any other in history due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Not only was the event held virtually, but the Los Angeles Dodgers and other clubs were limited to selecting players over just five rounds instead of the usual 40.
Given the abundance of prospects that went undrafted, MLB has permitted all 30 teams to sign as many players as they please, so long as they offer signing bonuses of no more than $20,000.
One of the first undrafted players the Dodgers inked was Robbie Peto, a pitcher out of Stetson University. He went 3-0 with a 1.78 ERA, 41 strikeouts and 13 walks over 25.1 innings pitched across four starts in a shortened season this year.
Prior to joining the Dodgers, the Toronto Blue Days reportedly made a strong push to sign Peto, via Jorge Castillo of the L.A. Times:
The Toronto Blue Jays went hard after Peto, too, but he decided on Los Angeles by the end of the day.
Petson revealed that he had settled on signing with the Dodgers from the start, but wanted to wait until the anniversary of his best friend’s death, who dreamed of playing for L.A. himself:
“I had already known I was going to pick Los Angeles,” Peto said. “I just wanted to wait until Tuesday.”
Peto and the friend he is referring to, Zach Attianese, were teammates at North Carolina before transferring together to State College of Florida. Attianese was named the conference player of the year and planned to transfer to Florida State before tragically passing away in a car crash on June 17, 2018.
Peto wanted to honor him by signing with the Dodgers on that date this year, which marked the two-year anniveraery of his death.
Opening Day rotation takes form
Beyond announcing Clayton Kershaw would make a ninth career Opening Day start, the Dodgers have not revealed any details with respect to their rotation. A fifth starter has yet to be formally named, though that’s presumed to be Ross Stripling.
Furthermore, based on the order in which pitchers took the mound during intrasquad games and probables for exhibition play, the Dodgers figure to enter the season with a rotation order of Kershaw, Stripling, Julio Urias, Alex Wood and Walker Buehler.
Beyond Kershaw starting the season opener, the only other certainty is manager Dave Roberts saying the Dodgers would have a five-man rotation from the outset.
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