Robbie Ray
Robbie Ray
29-Year-Old PitcherSP
Toronto Blue Jays
2021 Fantasy Outlook
If you came here looking for a case to draft Ray, you've come to the wrong place. Simply put, there is nothing to hang your hat on here. Ray made 12 appearances (11 starts) between Arizona and Toronto last season and went 2-5 with a 6.62 ERA. The lefty gained a tick of velocity but it did not matter; in fact, Ray's already-poor control only worsened, with his walk rate reaching a truly disastrous level at 17.9%. His struggles with the long ball only got worse as Ray served up 2.26 HR/9. He can still get his strikeouts around all the walks and homers, but it's not enough to salvage his fantasy value. The damage he's capable of doing to the ratio categories makes him a dangerous pitcher to have in your active lineup -- you could be left digging out of the hole for weeks. If you have to pick him up to stream him at some point, Godspeed. Try your best not to get to that point. Read Past Outlooks
RANKS
#344
ADP
$Signed a one-year, $8 million contract with the Blue Jays in November of 2020.
Returning to old arm slot
PToronto Blue Jays
February 21, 2021
Ray spent the winter working on his mechanics and trying to return to the three-quarter arm slot he used prior to last season, Gregor Chisholm of The Toronto Star reports.
ANALYSIS
Heading into last spring when he was still with the Diamondbacks, the southpaw adjusted his release point to come over the top with his delivery in an attempt to cut down on his walks. The result was the worst stretch of his career, and a trade to the Jays at a steep discount. Thanks to re-signing with Toronto early in the offseason, Ray had the organization's coaching staff available all winter for advice and guidance as he tried to get back to his old arm slot. "Technology has gotten way better and we have slow-mo cameras. They can break down your delivery in very, very small increments of, like, frames per second," Ray said this week. "So, it is a lot different now, and it's really cool to see that technology and be able to go pitch-to-pitch and see the difference: OK, this ball was here and this is what my delivery looked like, and this ball was here and it looked different." If he can re-discover the form he had from 2017-19, when he posted a 3.72 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and 12.1 K/9 over 460 innings, Ray will go a long way toward bolstering a Jays rotation that lacks reliable arms behind Hyun Jin Ryu.
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Pitching Stats
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2020
2019
2018
2017
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
86
Last 10 Games
84
Last 5 Games
83
How many pitches does Robbie Ray 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 Robbie Ray 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 2018
 
 
-27%
BAA vs LHP
2020
 
 
-27%
BAA vs LHP
2019
 
 
-13%
BAA vs LHP
2018
 
 
-49%
BAA vs LHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2018vs Left .180 349 113 25 57 11 2 11
Since 2018vs Right .248 1175 355 174 243 52 3 51
2020vs Left .207 64 21 6 12 1 0 3
2020vs Right .283 187 47 39 41 13 0 10
2019vs Left .209 168 52 11 32 9 2 4
2019vs Right .241 579 183 73 118 24 3 26
2018vs Left .124 117 40 8 13 1 0 4
2018vs Right .244 409 125 62 84 15 0 15
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2018
 
 
-2%
ERA at Home
2020
 
 
-43%
ERA at Home
2019
 
 
-9%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-36%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2018Home 4.48 1.43 164.2 11 5 0 12.0 5.2 1.9
Since 2018Away 4.57 1.43 185.0 9 10 0 12.1 5.0 1.4
2020Home 4.88 1.66 27.2 2 2 0 10.4 8.5 1.6
2020Away 8.63 2.17 24.0 0 3 0 13.5 7.1 3.0
2019Home 4.11 1.33 72.1 6 2 0 12.7 4.1 1.7
2019Away 4.50 1.35 102.0 6 6 0 11.7 4.5 1.4
2018Home 4.73 1.44 64.2 3 1 0 11.8 5.1 2.1
2018Away 3.05 1.25 59.0 3 1 0 12.2 5.0 0.6
More Splits View More Split Stats
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.

* 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
1.51
 
K/9
11.8
 
BB/9
7.8
 
HR/9
2.3
 
Fastball
93.7 mph
 
ERA
6.62
 
WHIP
1.90
 
BABIP
.340
 
GB/FB
0.58
 
Left On Base
72.7%
 
Exit Velocity
84.8 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
7.9%
 
Spin Rate
2353 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
29.6%
 
Swinging Strike
12.8%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Robbie Ray
Spring Training Job Battles: Let the Competition Begin
8 days ago
Erik Halterman analyzes the top job battles on every major league team, including a look at the Mets' closer situation. Will Edwin Diaz regain the job this season?
The Z Files: Changing Wins to Innings and Saves to Solds
8 days ago
Todd Zola examines the impact of new scoring categories on the pitching side, including the rise in value of top set-up men like Tyler Duffey.
Minor League Barometer: Risers & Fallers
11 days ago
Jesse Siegel makes his season debut with the Minor League Barometer where he profiles, among others, Ke'Bryan Hayes, who should get plenty of at-bats in Pittsburgh this season.
Collette Calls: 2021 NL West Bold Predictions
45 days ago
Jason Collette continues his Bold Predictions series with the National League West. Is Will Smith destined to be fantasy's top catcher this year?
Rounding Third: Is Corbin Burnes Getting Drafted Too Soon?
67 days ago
Is Corbin Burnes getting drafted too soon in early NFBC drafts? Jeff Erickson takes a look at the Brewers' hurler and the risks associated with his current ADP.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
Pitch inefficiency continues to haunt Ray. His 33 starts tied for the eighth most, but 174.1 innings checked in as 44th most. While an 11.2 BB% in tandem with a 31.5 K% contributed to high pitch counts, a 1.55 HR/9 also led to him hitting the showers early. Ray fanned double-digit hitters seven times, including in his last two starts of the season. However, he also issued at least four free passes 10 times with another 10 allowing multiple homers. Of slight concern is Ray's velocity has dipped for two straight seasons. Still just 28 years old, there's a chance Ray's command and control improve, but if they do not, a further decline could lower strikeouts, his primary fantasy asset. There's no harbinger of a change. Until Ray demonstrates consistently better control and command, he is what he is -- a plus for strikeouts but a big ratio risk, best streamed in favorable matchups.
Ray's season was shortened by injury. He made only 24 starts and fell well short of earning what many fantasy owners invested in him. His 3.93 ERA was a near-perfect settlement between his inflated 4.90 ERA in 2016 and his fortunate 2.89 ERA in 2017. It could have been much better with more credence to the times-through-the-order penalty. Ray's ERA the first time through a lineup was 2.81 and 2.59 the second time through, but ballooned to 9.13 thereafter as 11 of his 19 home runs allowed came that third time through. This has long been a problem for Ray, but one he was able to keep at bay in 2017 for most of the season. Ray's 2018 was a reminder that one season in a new direction does not mean a problem is resolved. He still gets strikeouts late in the game, but his command falters, so his misses become extra-base hits more often than not. He is a three-pitch guy with two strong breaking balls, but a quicker hook would help him in 2019.
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.
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
Remains with Jays on one-year deal
PToronto Blue Jays
November 7, 2020
Ray signed a one-year, $8 million contract to remain with the Blue Jays on Saturday, Jeff Passan of ESPN.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Controls Yankees
PToronto Blue Jays
September 23, 2020
Ray allowed three hits over four scoreless innings during the Blue Jays' 14-1 win over the Yankees on Wednesday. He walked four while striking out five.
ANALYSIS
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Struggles against Phillies
PToronto Blue Jays
September 19, 2020
Ray (2-5) took the loss in the first game of Friday's doubleheader against the Phillies, coughing up five runs on five hits and four walks over 4.1 innings as the Blue Jays fell 7-0. He struck out six.
ANALYSIS
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Earns first win with new team
PToronto Blue Jays
September 13, 2020
Ray (1-0) allowed one run on four hits and two walks while striking out five across five innings Saturday to claim the win in the Blue Jays' 3-2 victory over the Mets.
ANALYSIS
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Surrenders four earned runs
PToronto Blue Jays
September 6, 2020
Ray allowed four runs on six hits and three walks while striking out five across four innings Sunday against the Red Sox. He did not factor into the decision.
ANALYSIS
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