Ken Giles
Ken Giles
28-Year-Old PitcherRP
Toronto Blue Jays
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Giles' numbers, like his pitch command, were all over the place in 2018. He had the closer role in Houston, but eventually lost it with another early-season stumble. He was traded to Blue Jays and the results didn't improve all that much (4.12 ERA), but Giles still managed to save 26 games over the course of the season. His strikeout rate fell more than two strikeouts per nine, but he posted the best walk rate of his entire career (3.3%). The walk rate should not be confused with his pitch command because Giles did not have trouble throwing strikes, but rather throwing the ball within the strike zone where the catcher was calling for it. That is why he allowed more than a hit per inning and got in trouble with the long ball. His FIP was 1.5 runs lower than his actual ERA because he was abnormally terrible with runners in scoring position as batters had a .528 SLG against him in those situations. Giles should open the season in the ninth for the Blue Jays. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a one-year, $6.3 million contract with the Blue Jays in January of 2019, avoiding arbitration.
Allows run in 12th save
PToronto Blue Jays
June 22, 2019
Giles secured the save Saturday against the Red Sox despite giving up a run on one hit and one walk in one inning, though he did strike out three.
Giles issued a walk to Mookie Betts, who stole second base and subsequently scored on Xander Bogaerts' two-out, ground-rule double. Giles then struck out J.D. Martinez on five pitches with the tying run on second base to end the game. The run breaks a string of 17 straight scoreless outings for the right-hander, and he now has a 1.33 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 47:8 K:BB while converting 12 of 13 save chances.
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Pitching Stats
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .192 273 81 20 48 8 2 7
Since 2017vs Right .255 293 102 16 70 18 1 4
2019vs Left .120 53 21 3 6 3 0 1
2019vs Right .286 54 26 5 14 4 0 0
2018vs Left .224 105 23 6 22 4 1 3
2018vs Right .305 107 30 1 32 7 1 3
2017vs Left .196 115 37 11 20 1 1 3
2017vs Right .200 132 46 10 24 7 0 1
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
ERA at Home
ERA at Home
ERA on Road
ERA at Home
Since 2017Home 2.64 0.96 71.2 1 4 37 11.6 1.6 0.6
Since 2017Away 3.29 1.24 68.1 1 3 35 12.0 3.0 0.8
2019Home 0.00 0.64 14.0 1 0 5 15.4 1.3 0.0
2019Away 2.77 1.46 13.0 0 1 7 15.9 4.2 0.7
2018Home 6.31 1.44 25.2 0 3 13 8.1 1.8 1.8
2018Away 2.92 0.97 24.2 0 0 13 10.9 0.7 0.4
2017Home 0.84 0.72 32.0 0 1 19 12.7 1.7 0.0
2017Away 3.82 1.37 30.2 1 2 15 11.2 4.4 1.2
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Stat Review
How does Ken Giles compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 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 this season's data (min 20 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.
    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.
97.4 mph
Left On Base
Exit Velocity
88.5 mph
Spin Rate
2316 rpm
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
Swinging Strike
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Ken Giles
Mound Musings: Where Is Pitching Headed in Fantasy Baseball?
7 days ago
Brad Johnson explores the evolution of pitching and what its new direction might mean to scoring pitching categories in the fantasy game.
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10 days ago
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AL FAAB Factor: Waiver Pickups of the Week
11 days ago
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Oak's Corner: The Fantastic Mr. Freeman
12 days ago
With 18 homers through 68 games to go with his .311 batting average, Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman is having a monster season, notes Scott Jenstad.
Mound Musings: Is a Deep Bullpen a Ticket to the Playoffs?
14 days ago
Brad Johnson looks at deeper MLB bullpens, including the Astros, to determine whether they can make an impact on a team’s playoff chances.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
By every measure, the 2017 version of Giles was an excellent one. That is, the regular-season version of Giles. He had a disastrous postseason, putting him on thin ice in the closer role in Houston. You’ll recall he stumbled out of the gate in 2016 much like he did through the 2017 postseason. Perhaps it was just the slick World Series baseball Tom Verducci wrote about, or perhaps Giles has lost some of the edge like Cougar in Top Gun. Houston may not accept him turning in his closer wings because the skills are excellent overall, but the inconsistencies at inopportune times could lead to him having a reduced role in the bullpen in 2018. There is no great internal candidate to replace him unless the club wants to move Brad Peacock into that role, but the team could add a late-inning arm in free agency. There is risk involved here.
Giles increased his strikeout rate from 2015 by nearly two strikeouts per nine innings but ended up with the same number of saves (15), as it took him some time to wrestle the closer job away from Luke Gregerson. As a member of the Phillies in 2015, Giles allowed two homers all season, but that rate quadrupled with the Astros last year although half of his home runs allowed came during his first month in Houston. Giles began the season allowing 20 baserunners, four homers, and 10 earned runs in just 10 April innings. From May on, Giles struck out 88 batters, allowed four home runs, and was the same dominant reliever the club gave up so much to acquire during the offseason. The 4.11 ERA was bad, but the 2.86 FIP shows where things could be if the home run rate settles in between 2015 and 2016. Roster him with confidence.
Giles opened last season in a setup role, but was given closing duties after the Phillies shipped Jonathan Papelbon off to the Nationals at the trade deadline. Giles saved 15 games for a bad team and should be able to at least double that total this season (and maybe triple it), after a blockbuster trade to Houston in the offseason. He did see some decline in his fastball velocity last season, especially early on, but he still throws hard enough to be a dominant force at the end of games. While his walk rate ticked up a bit in 2015, it was not to the worrisome levels of his time in the lower minors. Given the price that the Astros paid, Giles figures to have a fairly long leash if he goes through a rough patch, but Luke Gregerson will be waiting in the wings if Giles does slip.
Giles went from a relative unknown Double-A reliever to a future closer last season. He has been on the radar as a relief prospect thanks to his upper-90s fastball, but his command had always been questionable. Giles showed some improvements in the minors last season as he learned to better command his slider. The Phillies gave him a look in their bullpen in June and Giles seized the opportunity. His 12.6 K/9 and 5.82 K/BB ratio in 45.2 innings with the Phillies were eye opening. The Phillies appear ready to turn over closing duties to Giles, but Jonathan Papelbon remains with the club. Unless the Phillies can trade Papelbon, Giles will be limited to a setup role this season. He will still have value in most formats thanks to his strikeout rate and the potential for saves if Papelbon gets dealt or suffers an injury during the season.
More Fantasy News
Back from IL
PToronto Blue Jays
June 20, 2019
Giles (elbow) was activated from the injured list Thursday, Ben Nicholson-Smith of reports.
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Faces hitters
PToronto Blue Jays
June 19, 2019
Giles (elbow) threw 22 pitches to hitters Wednesday, Scott Mitchell of reports.
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Still on track for short IL stint
PToronto Blue Jays
June 18, 2019
Manager Charlie Montoyo said Monday that Giles (elbow) has resumed playing catch and isn't expected to spend longer than the 10-day minimum on the injured list, Scott Mitchell of reports.
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Out with elbow inflammation
PToronto Blue Jays
June 12, 2019
Giles was placed on the 10-day injured list with right elbow inflammation Wednesday.
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Not listed on lineup card
PToronto Blue Jays
June 12, 2019
Giles is not listed on the lineup card prior to Wednesday's game against the Orioles, indicating that he's likely been placed on the 10-day injured list with an undisclosed injury, Shi Davidi of reports.
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