Southpaw in Toronto: Mike Minor or Robbie Ray?

Which lefty would be better for the Toronto Blue Jays?

The Toronto Blue Jays were buyers at the deadline for the first time in a few years. One position they needed reinforcements as was the starting rotation. Currently, all of Trent Thornton, Matt Shoemaker, and Nate Pearson are on the injured list.

They acquired Taijuan Walker from the Seattle Mariners but the front office ultimately though that he wasn’t enough. They then went out to acquire Robbie Ray from the Diamondbacks to add another arm to the rotation. While Ray not only provides another rotation piece, he also brings another lefty behind Hyun-Jin Ryu.

The Jays were never linked to Ray before they acquired him which was quite a bit of a surprising move. There was another lefty the Jays were rumored to be interested in which is former Texas Rangers southpaw Mike Minor who was dealt to the Oakland Athletics.

While I’m not complaining about the acquisition of Ray, who would be a better left-handed starter in the Jays rotation? Ray or Minor?

So far this season, Ray has posted an ugly 7.84 E.R.A. while walking the same amount of batters as innings pitched (31). Despite his struggles to keep the runs and walks down, he has managed to strike out 43 batters which equate to a K/9 of 12.5. Along with this, his record is 1-4 with an opponent average of .258.

In 2020, Minor has an E.R.A. of 5.60 with exactly 35 hits and 35 strikeouts in 35.1 innings pitched. He has also given 13 free passes. Minor has yet to record a win this season (0-5) while holding opponents to hit .248 off him.

In regards to how much they’re owed, it isn’t too much of a difference between the two lefties. Ray is owed around $1.5 million for the remainder of the season while Minor is set to get closer to $2 million.

In return for Ray, the Jays had to give up Travis Bergen who pitched just 1.2 innings in one game for the team this season. Last year, he appeared in 21 games all out of the bullpen where he posted a 5.49 E.R.A. The Diamondbacks now have him under control until 2024.

In order to get Minor, the Athletics had to give up two players who are apparently known but can’t be officially named due to the rules. One of the players is ranked among the Athletics top 30 prospects.

While Minor’s stats may be better, the Jays made the right move in calling the Diamondbacks for Ray than going after the Rangers southpaw. When Ray is on, he’s a good pitcher who has elite swing and miss stuff.

In his career, Ray is 48-50 with a 4.25 E.R.A. while striking out 1017 batters over 743 hits given up in 821.2 innings. He also holds an opponent average of .241.

The front office most likely acquired Ray as they believe he can be a reclamation project in which pitching coach Pete Walker can help Ray fix his command and control issues. If he can, this move will look golden and the dividends will be big.