Robbie Ray
Robbie Ray
26-Year-Old PitcherSP
Arizona Diamondbacks
2018 Fantasy Outlook
2016 Robbie Ray was not as bad as his win-loss record and ERA. Conversely, he was not as good as his 2017 win-loss record and ERA either. The book on Ray has been: he is going to get a ton of strikeouts (12.1 K/9 last season), he is going to struggle with his command (3.9 BB/9) and he'll serve up some homers (1.28 HR/9). The difference between 2016 and 2017 was in his left-on-base percentage, as he stranded 68.7 percent of runners in 2016 but jumped that rate up to 84.5 percent in 2017. That latter rate is what power relievers do and starters struggle to eclipse 80 percent in consecutive seasons. He also avoided the Times Through The Order (TTOP) penalty; after allowing 49 percent of his 2016 earned runs when he was allowed to face batters for a third time, that number fell to 26 percent this past season. Expect the three truisms to continue for the most part, although with the new humidor at Chase Field, Ray should be able to cut down on the long balls. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a one-year, $3.95 million contract with the Diamondbacks in January of 2018, avoiding arbitration.
Strikes out seven in no-decision
PArizona Diamondbacks
September 25, 2018
Ray took a no-decision Monday in the Diamondbacks' 7-4 loss to the Dodgers, working five innings and giving up two runs on four hits and three walks. He struck out seven in the outing.
Ray hasn't taken a loss in any of his last 13 starts, but his tendency to rack up high pitch counts has regularly prevented him from factoring into the decision. That was again the case Monday, as he required 100 pitches to record 15 outs before getting pulled from the contest with a one-run lead, which was eventually blown by the bullpen. On a more positive note, Ray has turned in a 3.15 ERA to accompany a 10.6 K/9 in the second half, so he's at least doing a better job in run prevention after logging a 5.03 ERA prior to the All-Star break. He'll likely take the hill one final time Sunday in San Diego to wrap up what's been an up-and-down campaign for the lefty.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2016
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2016vs Left .210 419 145 25 81 12 2 12
Since 2016vs Right .236 1505 441 180 308 52 5 52
2018vs Left .131 111 37 8 13 1 0 4
2018vs Right .239 372 113 55 75 13 0 13
2017vs Left .216 123 49 6 25 2 0 5
2017vs Right .195 542 169 65 91 16 2 18
2016vs Left .251 185 59 11 43 9 2 3
2016vs Right .272 591 159 60 142 23 3 21
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2016
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
ERA on Road
Since 2016Home 4.77 1.46 216.0 15 11 0 11.4 4.3 1.6
Since 2016Away 3.15 1.19 234.0 14 11 0 12.0 3.9 1.0
2018Home 4.83 1.44 59.2 3 1 0 11.8 5.1 2.1
2018Away 2.95 1.18 55.0 3 1 0 11.8 4.7 0.5
2017Home 4.08 1.35 75.0 7 4 0 11.9 4.7 1.6
2017Away 1.86 0.99 87.0 8 1 0 12.3 3.3 1.0
2016Home 5.36 1.57 82.1 5 6 0 10.6 3.3 1.2
2016Away 4.50 1.38 92.0 3 9 0 11.8 4.0 1.3
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Stat Review
How does Robbie Ray 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.
93.7 mph
Strand %
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
If fantasy baseball pitchers were measured just in terms of strikeout rate, Ray might be among the first arms taken in drafts. He finished last season with an 11.3 K/9, which ranked second in the majors. Ray struck out 10 or more batters four times. Ray often racked up the strikeouts only to surround them with mediocre overall stats. Walks have been a big part of the issue. Ray walked 3.7 hitters per nine innings last season, which is in line with his career 3.6 BB/9. Ray's propensity for issuing free passes offsets his ability to miss bats and helps explain his 1.45 career WHIP. If -- and this is a big if -- Ray could cut down on the walks, he'd likely take off and post stellar fantasy numbers. Even if he does not improve upon last season's ratios, the strikeouts alone make him a solid middle-round investment in mixed leagues, and he should be particularly appealing for owners looking to supplement a low-ratios/middling-strikeouts starter taken ahead of him in drafts.
Though his win-loss numbers didn’t show it, Ray put together a solid 2015 for the Diamondbacks. He struck out 119 batters and compiled a 3.52 ERA (3.53 FIP) across 127.2 innings, and according to his 1.7 WAR, he was second the second best pitcher on the team, trailing only closer Brad Ziegler. It was a marked improvement from 2014, when Ray posted an 8.16 ERA in nine games (six starts) for Detroit. Ray could still probably stand to improve his control - he walked 3.5 batters per nine innings in 2015, which matched his 2014 rate. While he didn’t join the rotation for good until June last year, Ray should be a staple in the D-Backs rotation at the outset of 2016. However, this is a team that has cycled through rotation arms with frequency over the past couple seasons, so if Ray struggles there will be another middling option waiting to take his place.
The Tigers were high enough on Ray to make him the key piece in the Doug Fister trade prior to the 2014 season. Unfortunately, Ray's lone season in the Tigers' organization was a rough one. The 23-year-old lefty split time between Triple-A Toledo and Detroit. In 20 appearances for the Mud Hens, Ray went 7-6 with a 4.22 ERA, 1.50 WHIP and 75:44 K:BB ratio in 100.1 innings. His time in Detroit was even bumpier, but on the plus side, Ray did impress in the Arizona Fall League, allowing three earned runs and striking out 12 in 11 innings. Although it was a disappointing year, it was Ray's first taste of Triple-A and major league ball, and with a fastball that touches 93 mph, a changeup and an improving slider, there's reason for optimism heading into his first year with Arizona. Harnessing his control is the biggest obstacle Ray needs to hurdle before the start of the regular season. If Ray can nab the final spot in the Diamondbacks' rotation, he'll garner some interest in deep mixed and NL-only leagues.
Ray broke through at High-A last year and held his own as a 21-year-old after a promotion to Double-A, and the Nationals wasted no time cashing in his new-found prospect status by dealing him for Doug Fister. Ray's control remains a work in progress, and given the Tigers' recent failures to develop left-handers with similar profiles (Exhibit A: Andrew Oliver) he can hardly be considered can't-miss. However, if Ray does build on last year's success, a 2015 major league debut seems likely.
More Fantasy News
Allows just one hit in win
PArizona Diamondbacks
September 20, 2018
Ray (6-2) got the win Wednesday, firing six scoreless innings with eight strikeouts against one hit and four walks versus the Cubs.
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Strikes out six in no-decision
PArizona Diamondbacks
September 14, 2018
Ray settled for a no-decision Friday night against the Astros, allowing two earned runs on two hits and three walks over 5.1 innings. He struck out six and also hit a batter.
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Strikes out six
PArizona Diamondbacks
September 9, 2018
Ray allowed two earned runs on two hits and four walks while striking out six across six innings Sunday against the Braves. He did not factor into the decision.
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Whiffs 10 in win
PArizona Diamondbacks
September 5, 2018
Ray (5-2) tossed 6.1 scoreless innings with 10 strikeouts against two hits and two walks en route to picking up the win Tuesday against the Padres.
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Strikes out nine
PArizona Diamondbacks
August 30, 2018
Ray (4-2) allowed one earned run on four hits and two walks while striking out nine across 5.1 innings to earn the win Thursday against the Dodgers.
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