MARINERS SIGN LHP ROBBIE RAY TO 5-YEAR MAJOR LEAGUE CONTRACT
Ray won the American League Cy Young Award in 2021
SEATTLE, Wash. — Seattle Mariners President of Baseball Operations Jerry Dipoto announced today that the Mariners have signed left-handed pitcher Robbie Ray to a 5-year Major League contract.
Seattle’s Major League, 40-man, roster is now full at 40 players.
Ray, 30, won the American League Cy Young Award in 2021, receiving 29 of 30 first place votes. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound, left-hander led all qualified American League pitchers in ERA (2.84), strikeouts (248), innings pitched (193.1), games started (32), WHIP (1.045) and bWAR (6.7). He was the first pitcher to lead his league in strikeouts, WHIP and ERA since Clayton Kershaw in 2013. The last AL pitcher to lead the league in all three categories was Justin Verlander in 2011.
“Adding our league’s reigning Cy Young award winner is exciting,” Dipoto said. “He’s a high character person, as well as one of the preeminent strikeout pitchers in the game. Robbie brings real presence to the front of our rotation.”
“Robbie pitched against us twice last season,” said Mariners Manager Scott Servais. “He has that dominating mound presence, paired with the kind of electric stuff you would expect from a Cy Young winner. You can feel it from the dugout. He really controls the game when he’s on the mound. His intensity is a great fit for our pitching staff and our ballclub as a whole.”
Ray tossed at least 5.0 IP in 28 of his 32 starts in 2021, on his way to racking up an American League-best 23 quality starts. He tallied 5+ strikeouts in 27 starts, including 10 outings with 10+ strikeouts. Overall, he went 13-7 with a 2.84 ERA (61 ER, 193.1 IP) with 52 walks and 248 strikeouts in 32 starts in 2021 with the Blue Jays.
“I can’t wait to get started here in Seattle. I’m here to win,” Ray said. “There’s something special going on here with the team coming off a 90-win season, and I’m excited to be a part of it. I’ve already had a chance to speak with some of the guys, and we all want to be a part of the team that brings a championship to this city. Seeing the stadium packed at the end of the season last year, and the support of this fanbase, I could not be more excited to be a Seattle Mariner.”
Ray tallied an all-time record 1,241 strikeouts through his first 1000.0 career innings pitched and is currently the all-time leader in strikeouts per nine (min. 1000 IP) with a mark of 11.2.
Ray is a veteran of 8 Major League seasons with Detroit (2014), Arizona (2015-20) and Toronto (2020-21). He was originally drafted by the Nationals in the 12th round of the 2010 MLB First-Year Player Draft out of Brentwood High School in Brentwood, TN. He made his Major League debut with the Tigers on May 6, 2014 vs. Houston. Overall, he is 62-58 with a 4.00 ERA (460 ER, 1035.2 IP) with 453 walks and 1290 strikeouts in 193 career games (189 starts). He was selected to the National League All-Star Team in 2017.
Ray has made 3 postseason appearances, pitching in the AL Wild Card Game in 2017 & 2020, and the ALDS in 2017.
Robbie and his wife Taylor have three children: sons, Asher and Brady, and daughter, Leighton.