For the first of our Prospects on the Move series, we’ll talk about the first prospect to head to another team as the 2013/14 offseason got really moving last week, 22 year old left-handed pitcher Robbie Ray.
Here’s Ray’s minor league stats, courtesy of Baseball Prospectus:
|2013||21||2 Teams||2 Lgs||A+-AA||WSN||11||5||.688||3.36||27||27||0||4||1||142.0||116||58||53||13||62||160||10||8||1.254||7.4||0.8||3.9||10.1||2.58|
From what Detroit Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski has said, the former Washington Nationals prospect was the key to making the deal with Nats, getting what is otherwise an uninspiring package of players for top-flight starter Doug Fister. “We think this guy is a premium, young, left-handed pitcher on the verge of pitching in the big leagues,” Dombrowski was quoted in the Detroit Free Press as saying about Ray. “They’re not easy to find.”
Ray caught the Tigers’ attention by striking out a lot of batters in 2013 (160 in 142 innings combined between High-A and Double-A). His mid-90s fastball is complemented by a potentially average slider and changeup. While his control is still being refined, scouts think that it’ll round into form and he’ll be able to use his advanced pitchability as a weapon in the major leagues.
Starting the season, MLB.com had Ray ranked as the #10 prospect in the Nationals organization but after the trade, he’s near the top of the Tigers’ prospect lists, sitting at #3. Obviously, the Tigers needed to bolster the pitching in their minor league system but it’s still up for grabs whether Ray is able to give the Tigers what they hope they’re going to get.
What do you think? Did the Tigers get enough for Fister? Is Dave Dombrowski going to be vindicated by his faith in Ray?