Brendan McKay
Brendan McKay
25-Year-Old PitcherP
Tampa Bay Rays
Out
Injury Shoulder
Est. Return 5/1/2021
2021 Fantasy Outlook
A shoulder injury that first popped up in February and ultimately required surgery wiped out McKay's 2020 season and his chance to progress from a rough rookie campaign. The brief time he did spend on the mound gives little insight into what might have been, as McKay balanced one impressive spring-training appearance in relief with one ugly start. His dominance in the minors (1.78 ERA, 0.84 WHIP, 11.8 K/9 over 172 innings) oversells his realistic MLB upside moving forward. From a stuff standpoint, he looks much more like a No. 4 starter than a No. 2 starter, and he also has the shoulder surgery and the Rays' frustrating pitcher usage to contend with. Even if he gets back for part of spring training, it seems likely that he would open the year at Triple-A or in extended spring training. This is his final minor-league option year and there are more reasons than not to avoid McKay in redraft mixed leagues. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
#590
ADP
$Signed a contract with the Rays in June of 2017 that includes a $7 million signing bonus.
Sent to minor-league camp
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
March 16, 2021
The Rays optioned McKay (shoulder) to their minor-league camp Tuesday.
ANALYSIS
Since McKay wasn't on pace to pitch in any games before the end of spring training, he didn't warrant any serious consideration for the Rays' Opening Day roster. If McKay doesn't hit any snags in his rehab program for the left shoulder surgery he required last August, he could have an outside chance at being ready to pitch when Triple-A Durham begins its season in May. Even if he needs time beyond that to complete his throwing program, McKay could still be available for Durham as a designated hitter, which would allow him to avoid a stint on the minor-league injured list.
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Pitching Stats
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Batting Stats
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2019
2019 MLB Game Log
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+56%
OPS vs RHP
2021
No Stats
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
+56%
OPS vs RHP
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019vs Left .500 2 0 0 0 0 .000 .500 .000
Since 2019vs Right .778 9 2 1 1 0 .222 .222 .556
2021vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2021vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Left .500 2 0 0 0 0 .000 .500 .000
2019vs Right .778 9 2 1 1 0 .222 .222 .556
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2019
 
 
+88%
OPS at Home
2021
No Stats
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
+88%
OPS at Home
OPS PA R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG
Since 2019Home 1.000 5 1 1 1 0 .200 .200 .800
Since 2019Away .533 6 1 0 0 0 .200 .333 .200
2021Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2021Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Home 1.000 5 1 1 1 0 .200 .200 .800
2019Away .533 6 1 0 0 0 .200 .333 .200
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2019
 
 
-23%
BAA vs LHP
2021
No Stats
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
-23%
BAA vs LHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2019vs Left .220 52 8 2 11 5 0 0
Since 2019vs Right .284 164 48 14 42 10 1 8
2021vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2021vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020vs Left 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020vs Right 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019vs Left .220 52 8 2 11 5 0 0
2019vs Right .284 164 48 14 42 10 1 8
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2019
 
 
-3%
ERA at Home
2021
No Stats
2020
No Stats
2019
 
 
-3%
ERA at Home
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2019Home 5.06 1.31 26.2 1 3 0 10.1 2.0 2.0
Since 2019Away 5.24 1.52 22.1 1 1 0 10.5 4.0 0.8
2021Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2021Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020Home 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2020Away 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
2019Home 5.06 1.31 26.2 1 3 0 10.1 2.0 2.0
2019Away 5.24 1.52 22.1 1 1 0 10.5 4.0 0.8
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Prospect Rankings History
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Additional Stats
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2020
2019
2018
McKay, the No. 4 overall pick in 2017, had a 1.21 ERA, 0.79 WHIP and 88:15 K:BB in 66.2 innings at Double-A and Triple-A when he got the call for his MLB debut on June 29. He pitched OK in his first three outings, but logged a 7.34 ERA and 1.79 WHIP over his next 30.2 MLB innings, with a few trips back to Triple-A mixed in. The strikeouts and walks were fine for McKay. The big difference between the minors and majors was hard contact. His groundball rate plummeted from 47.1% at Triple-A to 35.2% and he gave up eight home runs after giving up just three in the minors. Touted as a big southpaw with command of a deep arsenal, McKay threw his four-seam fastball and curveball a combined 83.3% of the time in the big leagues, so perhaps working in his cutter and changeup more would help keep hitters off balance. There is strikeout upside, but he will have to earn a true starter's role for the free-thinking Rays.
The bulk of the MLB value McKay will provide will come as a starting pitcher, but he will continue to be developed as a two-way player, for now. The 6-foot-2 southpaw dominated across 78.1 innings, primarily at Low-A and High-A. McKay works with a plus fastball (92-94 mph) and plus cutter, mixing in a curveball and changeup that are solid third and fourth pitches. His advanced strike-throwing ability allows his arsenal to play up. He missed a month in the middle of the season with a strained oblique and his GB% plummeted from an elite 61.0% in the Midwest League to a below-average 37.7% in the Florida State League. Already 23 years old, McKay seems destined to be a No. 3 starter, as early as 2020. At the plate, he walks almost as much as he strikes out, but that passivity prohibits him from regularly getting to his plus power. He is no Shohei Ohtani, but could get some starts at first base or DH against righties when he is not pitching.
The dream of a true two-way player is alive with McKay, who received the second highest bonus in the 2017 draft. He was Hudson Valley's starting pitcher every Sunday, got Wednesday's off for his side session, and saw time at first base and DH in between. On the mound, the 6-foot-2 lefty has a quality four-pitch mix, led by his 93-94 mph fastball. He notched a 21:5 K:BB in 20 innings while holding hitters to a .147 average, looking the part of a future mid-rotation starter. As a hitter, he slashed .268/.374/.454 with four home runs in 97 at-bats against righties, but was completely overmatched in a small sample against lefties. The Rays have said they envisioned him as a hitter when they drafted him, so he may still end up as a full-time first baseman. He worked strictly as a hitter in fall instructs after reaching his innings limit on the mound, but given his relative success in both roles, he will probably go back out as a two-way player again this season.
More Fantasy News
Mound work coming in late March
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
March 9, 2021
McKay (shoulder) said Tuesday that he expects to resume throwing off a mound by the end of March, Neil Solondz of the Rays Radio Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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Working as hitter while rehabbing
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
February 19, 2021
McKay will continue to hit throughout spring training while rehabbing from shoulder surgery, Neil Solondz of the Rays Radio Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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Spring status in doubt
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
August 20, 2020
McKay (shoulder) underwent surgery Wednesday, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
ANALYSIS
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Season-ending surgery on tap
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
August 18, 2020
McKay (shoulder) will undergo season-ending surgery Wednesday, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports.
ANALYSIS
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Dealing with shoulder irritation
PTampa Bay Rays  AAA
Shoulder
August 11, 2020
Manager Kevin Cash said Tuesday that McKay is dealing with shoulder irritation and is being shut down for 7-to-10 days, Neil Solondz of the Rays Radio Network reports.
ANALYSIS
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