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May 1, 2014

The Call-Up

Robbie Ray

by Mark Anderson and Craig Goldstein


The Situation: When Anibal Sanchez went on the disabled list with a finger laceration, the Tigers knew they would need another starter on May 6. The speculation as to who that starter would be ended when Detroit announced that the headliner in the Doug Fister trade, Robbie Ray, would take the bump next Tuesday in place of Sanchez.

Background: Ray made slow and steady progress as he moved through the Nationals’ system after being popped in the 12th round and signed for nearly $800,000 in 2010. Ray’s breakout came after a return trip to the High-A Carolina League in 2013. After posting a 6.56 ERA in 21 starts (22 appearances) at High-A in 2012, Ray returned to notch a 3.11 ERA in 16 starts before he was promoted to Double-A in the second half. In 11 Eastern League starts, Ray posted a 3.72 ERA and struck out better than a batter per inning. He was dealt to the Tigers as the headline piece of the package in the Doug Fister trade last winter and has dominated in five Triple-A starts this season.

Scouting Report: It’s hard not to like Ray the second he steps on the mound, thanks to a lean, athletic build that exhibits some strength. He backs up the physical presence with an easy delivery that he has begun to repeat with more consistency.

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