Ray signed a one-year, $8 million contract to remain with the Blue Jays on Saturday, Jeff Passan of ESPN.com reports. The Blue Jays traded for half a season of Ray at the deadline for quite a cheap return after he opened the campaign with a 7.84 ERA in seven starts for Arizona. He was better with his new team but was still not close to his previous form, finishing the year with a 6.62 ERA. His strikeout rate fell by over four points to a still-strong 27.1 percent, while his walk rate ballooned to an unsustainably high 17.9 percent and his groundball rate collapsed to a similarly poor 24.3 percent. It's hard to call this year's version of Ray a major-league caliber arm, but he's still just 29 years old, so the Blue Jays evidently believe he can get back to being the guy who posted a 3.72 ERA from 2017 through 2019. If he does indeed bounce back, they will have gotten quite a bargain, as will fantasy players who pick him up for a good price in draft season.
Ray allowed three hits over four scoreless innings during the Blue Jays' 14-1 win over the Yankees on Wednesday. He walked four while striking out five. Wednesday marked Ray's first outing without an earned run since he was acquired by Toronto. Through five starts with the Blue Jays, the 28-year-old has logged a 6.62 ERA over 20.2 innings of work.
Ray (2-5) took the loss in the first game of Friday's doubleheader against the Phillies, coughing up five runs on five hits and four walks over 4.1 innings as the Blue Jays fell 7-0. He struck out six. The southpaw threw only 56 of 92 pitches for strikes as his control was once again an issue. Ray has walked 10 batters through 16.2 innings with Toronto, which is still a big improvement over the 31 free passes he issued in 31 innings before getting dropped by Arizona. He'll take a 7.17 ERA and 1.91 WHIP on the year into his final outing Wednesday against the Yankees in Buffalo.
Ray (1-0) allowed one run on four hits and two walks while striking out five across five innings Saturday to claim the win in the Blue Jays' 3-2 victory over the Mets. Ray did a good job of navigating through the New York lineup, as his only troublesome inning came in the fourth. He surrendered a leadoff single to Michael Conforto, who later came around to score after Jake Marisnick roped a double down the left-field line. Fortunately for Ray, the Blue Jays came back to score twice to give him a 2-1 lead before he was pulled after five frames. The 28-year-old owns a 4.38 ERA in 12.1 innings since joining the Blue Jays, but he's struggled mightily with his command all season long.
Ray allowed four runs on six hits and three walks while striking out five across four innings Sunday against the Red Sox. He did not factor into the decision. Ray surrendered two home runs -- including a three-run shot -- to sour his second outing with the Blue Jays. He did pitch fairly well otherwise, allowing only a solo home run across his final three frames. Still, long balls and control issues continue to be the demise of Ray on the mound, something that hasn't changed since he was dealt from Arizona. Overall, he has a 7.51 ERA with a 52:35 K:BB across 38.1 innings this season. His next outing is projected to come Saturday against the Mets.