Robbie Ray
Robbie Ray
27-Year-Old PitcherSP
Arizona Diamondbacks
10-Day IL
Injury Back
Est. Return 8/25/2019
2019 Fantasy Outlook
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. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a one-year, $6.05 million contract with the Diamondbacks in January of 2019, avoiding arbitration.
Expects to be activated Sunday
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 23, 2019
Ray (back) expects to come off the injured list and start Sunday against the Brewers, Russell Dorsey of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Ray threw a bullpen session Friday without issue, and that was apparently all he and the Diamondbacks needed to see before deeming him ready to return to action. Barring any setbacks, Ray will occupy a spot in Arizona's rotation the rest of the way as they try to earn a Wild Card berth.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-14%
BAA vs LHP
2019
 
 
-5%
BAA vs LHP
2018
 
 
-49%
BAA vs LHP
2017
 
 
-10%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .190 384 132 23 67 12 2 12
Since 2017vs Right .221 1409 438 181 265 46 4 53
2019vs Left .220 144 43 9 29 9 2 3
2019vs Right .231 458 144 54 90 15 2 20
2018vs Left .124 117 40 8 13 1 0 4
2018vs Right .244 409 125 62 84 15 0 15
2017vs Left .216 123 49 6 25 2 0 5
2017vs Right .195 542 169 65 91 16 2 18
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-30%
ERA on Road
2019
 
 
-4%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-36%
ERA on Road
2017
 
 
-54%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 4.25 1.35 195.0 15 7 0 12.1 4.6 1.8
Since 2017Away 2.98 1.17 232.2 16 7 0 11.9 4.1 1.0
2019Home 3.90 1.25 55.1 5 2 0 12.8 3.7 1.6
2019Away 4.05 1.30 86.2 5 5 0 11.2 4.2 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
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
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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.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against this season's data (min 70 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
2.97
 
K/9
11.9
 
BB/9
4.0
 
HR/9
1.5
 
Fastball
92.6 mph
 
ERA
3.99
 
WHIP
1.28
 
BABIP
.310
 
GB/FB
1.18
 
Left On Base
74.8%
 
Exit Velocity
88.1 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
9.6%
 
Spin Rate
2186 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
38.0%
 
Swinging Strike
13.4%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
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
Bullpen scheduled for Friday
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 22, 2019
Ray (back) will throw a bullpen session Friday, Richard Morin of the Arizona Republic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Tosses side session
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 20, 2019
Ray (back) threw a 35-pitch bullpen session Tuesday, Jody Jackson of FOX Sports Arizona reports.
ANALYSIS
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Lands on IL
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 15, 2019
Ray (back) was placed on the 10-day injured list Thursday.
ANALYSIS
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Headed for MRI
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 14, 2019
Ray (back) will undergo an MRI on Thursday, Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Removed with back spasm
PArizona Diamondbacks
Back
August 14, 2019
Ray was removed from Wednesday's game against the Rockies due to a lower back spasm.
ANALYSIS
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