June 25, 2021

Robbie Ray could increase the Yankees’ pitching floor (Pinstripe Alley)

The Yankees are actively looking for trade partners, and one of the first potential sellers of the offseason may have been found. The Arizona Diamondbacks are reportedly open to selling on starter Robbie Ray a year away from free agency eligibility, and he could be a good option for the Yankees to add at the bottom of their rotation.

Ray tied his career-high in innings pitched with 174.1 in 2019, and picked up a personal best 235 strikeouts. He has the potential to be a key power pitcher, but what has held back his performance throughout his career has been his high amount of walks allowed. Ray walked 84 batters last season, good for a 4.3 BB/9. That has to go down if Ray has any hopes of developing into a number two-type pitcher.

Walks withstanding, Ray still represents an upgrade for the Yankees compared to what the bottom of their rotation gave them. CC Sabathia gave the Yankees whatever was left in the tank in his final MLB season, but age had clearly caught up to him. Sabathia pitched just over 100 innings, and surrendered a career-high 2.3 HR/9 leading to a 4.95 ERA. J.A. Happ wasn’t much better, pitching to a 4.91 ERA in 161.1 innings and surrendering 1.9 HR/9.


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