Diamondbacks News

Arizona Diamondbacks: Award winners after first two weeks

By Joseph Jacquez
Apr 11, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Jake Lamb (22) hits a three-run triple against the San Francisco Giants in the third inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 11, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks third baseman Jake Lamb (22) hits a three-run triple against the San Francisco Giants in the third inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports /
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Apr 11, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches against the San Francisco Giants in the first inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 11, 2017; San Francisco, CA, USA; Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Robbie Ray (38) pitches against the San Francisco Giants in the first inning at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports /

Most Valuable Starting Pitcher: Robbie Ray

Robbie Ray has top-of-the-rotation starter potential. Ray became one of two pitchers all time to eclipse 218 strikeouts in fewer than 175 innings pitched in a single season. The left-hander also recorded the second hardest average velocity (92.39) among southpaw starters in 2016.

An inability to go deep into ball games has prevented Ray from reaching the next level. For this reason, Ray’s early 2017 resume should excite fans.

With three starts under his belt, Ray is averaging 6.0 innings per start. He has avoided pitching from the stretch. Ray has surrendered just seven hits and three earned runs. He is locating his fastball and playing his slider off that.

Starting against the Dodgers Monday night, Ray gave Lovullo six, strong innings and came away with a no-decision. In his three starts to date, Ray’s ERA slid under two runs per game (1.96).

He has actually increased his curveball and slider usage while throwing his four-seamer and sinker less. Ray’s willingness to mix in secondary pitches early has kept hitters off balance.

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