Robbie Ray strains oblique, potentially leaving Diamondbacks down another starter

Earlier today, we noted that the Arizona Diamondbacks had done more to improve their playoff odds in the season's first month than any other team in baseball.  

Unfortunately for the D-Backs, their odds might be about to decline.

Left-handed pitcher Robbie Ray, who finished seventh in National League Cy Young Award voting last fall, exited his Sunday start one pitch into the second inning. Ray motioned to the dugout after completing his delivery, then left alongside the trainer. The Diamondbacks announced that Ray is dealing with a strained oblique:

Ray entered Sunday having fanned 43 batters across his first 26 1/3 innings. Nonetheless, his ERA sat at an untidy 5.13 due to a combination of too many walks (nearly six per nine) and home runs (more than 1.5). Ray will presumably miss at least one start, perhaps more, depending on the injury's severity. 

The Diamondbacks are already without Taijuan Walker (Tommy John surgery) and Shelby Miller (recovering from Tommy John surgery), meaning they could be down three starters. With Matt Koch taking Walker's place, it seems likely that Arizona would turn to either Braden Shipley or Troy Scribner to replace Ray. Prospect Taylor Clarke and veteran Kris Medlen are the other possibilities. Jon Duplantier wouldn't seem like a realistic option, given he's appeared in just two Double-A games.

The D-Backs entered Sunday with the largest division lead in baseball. 

CBS Sports Staff

R.J. Anderson joined CBS Sports in 2016. He previously wrote for Baseball Prospectus, where he contributed to five of the New York Times bestselling annuals. His work has also appeared in Newsweek and... Full Bio

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