Drew Smyly
Drew Smyly
32-Year-Old PitcherSP
Atlanta Braves
2021 Fantasy Outlook
You could be forgiven for forgetting about Smyly heading into last year, as he missed 2017 and 2018 due to Tommy John surgery before struggling to a 6.24 ERA in 2019. A solid 25.9 K% and 8.0 BB% in 12 starts that year after a mid-season trade to the Phillies hinted at a modest amount of promise, but few would have predicted his 37.8 K%, 3.42 ERA and 2.01 FIP for the Giants last season. That came in a tiny sample of 26.1 innings, as he missed time with a strained finger, but was backed by a 2.6-mph jump in fastball velocity, enough to convince the Braves to give him a one-year, $11 million deal. It's not like his success came completely out of nowhere, as the lefty managed a 3.24 ERA over his first four seasons, and getting back to that level now that he's fully healthy could certainly be sustainable. He's still firmly in lottery-ticket territory, but he's one of the most interesting members of that group. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#246
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $11 million contract with the Braves in November of 2020.
Throws 5.2 strong innings
PAtlanta Braves
June 20, 2021
Smyly (4-3) won Game 2 of Sunday's 1-0 doubleheader against St. Louis, going 5.2 innings and allowing no runs on one hit and three walks with five strikeouts.
ANALYSIS
Smyly was excellent in this one and submitted his longest start in over a month, blanking a solid Cardinals team in the process. It was only Smyly's third start allowing zero or one run in 12 turns, though he's been decent since May aside from one blow-up outing. His upside is limited by his inability to pitch deep into games, though Smyly remains a decent streaming option.
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Pitching Stats
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2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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2018 MLB Game Log
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2017 MLB Game Log
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Pitching Appearances Breakdown
Average Pitch Count
90
Last 10 Games
89
Last 5 Games
86
How many pitches does Drew Smyly generally throw?
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
What part of the game does Drew Smyly generally pitch?
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
% Games Reaching Innings Threshold
% Games By Number of Innings Pitched
Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2019
 
 
-8%
BAA vs LHP
2021
 
 
-6%
BAA vs RHP
2020
 
 
-76%
BAA vs LHP
2019
 
 
-4%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2019vs Left .246 213 48 17 48 10 1 18
Since 2019vs Right .268 659 158 69 155 25 3 30
2021vs Left .262 68 19 3 17 4 0 6
2021vs Right .247 199 35 20 43 6 0 9
2020vs Left .069 32 9 3 2 0 0 0
2020vs Right .283 59 23 5 15 2 0 1
2019vs Left .287 113 20 11 29 6 1 12
2019vs Right .276 401 100 44 97 17 3 20
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2019
 
 
-27%
ERA on Road
2021
 
 
-19%
ERA on Road
2020
 
 
-48%
ERA on Road
2019
 
 
-31%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2019Home 6.51 1.48 94.0 2 5 0 10.1 3.5 2.6
Since 2019Away 4.72 1.46 103.0 6 5 1 8.8 4.3 1.8
2021Home 5.76 1.32 25.0 1 1 0 9.0 2.9 2.9
2021Away 4.66 1.36 36.2 3 2 0 7.1 3.7 1.7
2020Home 4.15 1.23 13.0 0 0 0 13.8 3.5 0.0
2020Away 2.16 1.08 8.1 0 0 0 13.0 3.2 1.1
2019Home 7.39 1.61 56.0 1 4 0 9.6 3.9 3.1
2019Away 5.12 1.57 58.0 3 3 1 9.3 4.8 2.0
More Splits View More Split Stats
Stat Review
How does Drew Smyly compare to other starting pitchers?
This section compares his stats with all starting pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 120 innings)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 120 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
K/BB
2.35
 
K/9
7.9
 
BB/9
3.4
 
HR/9
2.2
 
Fastball
92.5 mph
 
ERA
5.11
 
WHIP
1.35
 
BABIP
.273
 
GB/FB
0.99
 
Left On Base
67.7%
 
Exit Velocity
81.5 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
6.7%
 
Spin Rate
2133 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
25.1%
 
Swinging Strike
10.3%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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3 days ago
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
When the Cubs signed Smyly prior to the 2018 season, they understood that he might not contribute much in his first season with the club. The southpaw spent the early portion of the campaign continuing to rehab from the Tommy John surgery he underwent in June of 2017, and he progressed to simulated games after the All-Star break. Just when he appeared to be closing in on a return from the disabled list, the Cubs opted to shut him down for the season. After the extra-long layoff, the hope is that Smyly will be fully healthy and ready to compete for a spot in the Rangers' rotation following a November trade. He turns 30 in June and his medical history is lengthy, but in AL-only leagues and deep draft-and-hold formats, there are worse late-round speculations.
A strong showing last spring -- which he split between the Mariners and Team USA in the WBC -- signaled that Smyly was ready to bounce back from a poor 2016 season, but an elbow injury suffered in late March prevented him from being ready for the start of the season. His season was ultimately over for good when it was decided he would need Tommy John surgery in June. Smyly will not be ready to return until the middle of the 2018 season at the earliest, and it's possible he could miss the entire year. His respectable career marks of a 3.74 ERA and 8.7 K/9 make him worth holding onto in deep keeper leagues, but it's a long shot that he will pay off as a long-term stash in single-season leagues in 2018. The Cubs signed him to a two-year deal in December, likely banking on his Year 2 contributions with the club once he's completely healthy again.
The 27-year-old left-hander managed to stay healthy but struggled through the majority of the 2016 campaign. His first half of the season was particularly poor, with Smyly tallying just a pair of victories against 10 losses to go along with a 5.47 ERA. He rebounded in the second half to forge a 5-2 record and generate a more respectable 4.08 ERA, but still saw a significant drop in his K/9 and the home runs have become a major issue at this point (43 allowed in 242 innings over the past two seasons). There was no accompanying rise in BABIP to blame for his struggles in 2016, as that figure remained at a reasonable .291. A full offseason of rest will create further distance from the shoulder problems and he's relatively safe in his role even after a trade to Seattle, but Smyly remains a risk in the ratio categories.
After a pair of DL stints and just 66.2 innings pitched in 2015, Smyly is officially an injury risk who is more potential than performance at this point. He has spent some time in the bullpen so we can't just judge him strictly on the innings, but four DL stints, major shoulder issues in 2015, and a max of 153 innings as a big leaguer all ding his reliability, especially at 27 years old now. There is still a lot to like when he does pitch, including the strikeout surge from last season. He needed an 87 percent strand rate to limit the damage of a 1.5 HR/9 rate, but both were career outliers and should be expected to regress. His fastball has experienced a four percent jump in swinging-strike rate with Tampa Bay and the key difference has been elevating it. The pitch has been instrumental in cutting his platoon split with righties posting a .641 OPS against him with Tampa Bay, down from .799 with Detroit. Intriguing skills, but the health history has to temper expectations.
At the trade deadline, Smyly was 6-9 with a 3.93 ERA, 1.35 WHIP and had struck out 20 percent of the batters he faced. He was then shipped to Tampa Bay as part of the David Price deal and things took a different course. He made seven starts for the Rays and posted a 1.70 ERA, 0.76 WHIP, and struck out 25 percent of the batters he faced. The amazing part is the Rays barely made a tweak to his mechanics as they typically do not like doing many changes during a season. Smyly increased the strikeouts with sequencing more than a new pitch, and there is a very good chance the team teaches him a changeup this offseason as every pitcher within the organization is encouraged to throw the pitch. There is some concern with Smyly since his innings total jumped from 76 to 153 last season, which is why the team shut him down in early September. He will not come at a discount in 2015.
After working as a starting pitcher and reliever for Detroit in 2012, Smyly was moved to a full-time role in the bullpen last season. The 25-year-old lefty excelled in his new role, finishing 6-0 with a 2.37 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP in 63 appearances. He improved both his strikeout rate (9.6 K/9), walk rate (2.0 BB/9) and limited the long ball (0.5 HR/9). The young southpaw was lights-out against left-handed hitters (.189 BAA), but he also limited right-handed hitters to a .242/.374/.293 line, proving that he’s far more than a situational pitcher. Originally a starter, Smyly has a steady five-pitch arsenal at his disposal. His fastball usually sits in the 90-92 mph range. He also mixes in a curveball with plus-pitch upside, a cutter and a changeup that needs some work. While none of his pitches are dominant, Smyly does a great job locating and keeping hitters off balance. The Tigers traded Doug Fister to the Nationals in December, opening the door for Smyly to take a permanent spot in the rotation and making him an excellent sleeper for 2014.
Smyly was an early-season surprise in 2012, as he earned the No. 5 spot in the rotation out of spring training. The 23-year-old lefty got off to a great start in April, posting a 1.23 ERA and 22:8 K:BB in 22 innings, but his performance dropped off in May and he eventually lost a spot in the rotation when Detroit acquired Anibal Sanchez in a midseason deal. Despite the up-and-down season, there was plenty to like with Smyly. He aptly mixed in a low-90s fastball with an effective slider to post a 3.99 ERA while striking out nearly one hitter per inning (8.5 K/9). The big question mark with Smyly is whether or not he can earn a spot in the Opening Day rotation again. With the Tigers' decision to re-sign Sanchez, Smyly will be left battling out for a rotation spot with Rick Porcello, who would likely hold the edge. Keep a close eye on Smyly's competition this spring, as he could be a decent rotation filler for mid-sized leagues.
Selected in the second round by the Tigers in 2010, Smyly has quickly moved up the team’s prospect list. He impressed during his first season in the minors, going 11-6 with a 2.07 ERA and 130:36 K:BB ratio while splitting time between High-A Lakeland and Double-A Erie. The 22-year-old southpaw’s two best pitches are a sinking 89-92 mph fastball and a mid-80s cutter. He also mixes in a curveball and change-up but needs to refine both pitches. Unless the Tigers go out and sign a proven veteran prior to spring training, Smyly is expected to compete with fellow prospects Jacob Turner, Duane Below and Andy Oliver for the final spot in the rotation. Despite being named as part of the competition, Smyly is a long shot to earn a place on the Opening Day roster, but he could see his first cup of coffee in the big leagues in 2012 if he shows continued success in the upper levels of the minors. He’s worth keeping an eye on in keeper leagues.
More Fantasy News
Saturday's start postponed
PAtlanta Braves
June 19, 2021
Smyly won't pitch Saturday against the Cardinals since the game was postponed due to inclement weather, Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports.
ANALYSIS
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Strikes out six in win
PAtlanta Braves
June 13, 2021
Smyly (3-3) allowed two runs on six hits and a walk with six strikeouts in five innings to earn the win over Miami on Sunday.
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Lasts 4.1 frames in no-decision
PAtlanta Braves
June 8, 2021
Smyly allowed three runs (two earned) on five hits and three walks over 4.1 innings during Tuesday's 9-5 win over the Phillies. He had zero strikeouts and didn't factor in the decision.
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Escapes with no-decision Wednesday
PAtlanta Braves
June 3, 2021
Smyly didn't factor into the decision in Wednesday's 5-3 loss to the Nationals, giving up three runs on seven hits and two walks over 4.1 innings. He struck out six.
ANALYSIS
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Wrecked by Red Sox
PAtlanta Braves
May 27, 2021
Smyly (2-3) took the loss Wednesday, coughing up seven runs on five hits and a walk over 5.1 innings as Atlanta fell 9-5 to the Red Sox. He struck out four.
ANALYSIS
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