5) Worst contracts in the AL West: Robbie Ray of the Seattle Mariners
Prior to the 2022 season, the Mariners inked reigning AL Cy Young award winner Robbie Ray on a huge deal to try and anchor their rotation. Ray wasn't at a Cy Young or even an all-star level in 2022, but he was a solid contributor on a really good staff to help get Seattle back to the postseason for the first time in a long time.
This season, Ray was expected to be that second or third starter behind Luis Castillo, but unfortunately, that dream was over after just one start. Ray allowed five runs (three earned) in 3.1 innings pitched in what was the second game of the season for the Mariners, and exited with a forearm injury.
All seemed fine before future tests revealed he had an injury in his elbow and needed Tommy John Surgery. He underwent the surgery, and is expected to miss this season and a large chunk of next season as well.
Ray made $21 million this season for his one start and is set to make $23 million next season for half of a season (if the recovery goes as planned). Ray has an opt-out after the 2024 campaign which he likely won't exercise because he can make $25 million in 2025 and 2026 if he opts in. Chances are, Ray won't get more than that on the open market at that point.
The Mariners are on the hook for a lot more money with uncertainty of how effective Ray will be coming back from the surgery.