Ryan Helsley

Ryan Helsley

28-Year-Old PitcherRP
St. Louis Cardinals
Out
Injury Finger
Est. Return 2/1/2023
2023 Fantasy Outlook
Helsley added 2.2 mph on his fastball in 2022, averaging 99.7 mph on the pitch while routinely reaching triple digits. He threw the third-most pitches in the league at 100 mph or greater and the added velocity significantly improved his effectiveness, as he went nearly two months without giving up an earned run. Couple this with a devastating slider (.111 BA) and the occasional curve (.000 BA) that opposing batters struggled to hit and Helsley turned in the finest season of his career. He posted career highs in innings (64.2), strikeouts (94), saves (19) and wins (9), which made him one of the most impactful waiver wire additions last season. Helsley's 1.25 ERA ranked third in the league among qualified relievers, while his 0.74 WHIP ranked second. The right-hander jammed his finger at the end of last season, but assuming he's healthy entering 2023, he's likely to be drafted among the top seven or eight closers. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
$Signed a one-year, $569,000 contract with the Cardinals in March of 2020.
MRI clean but unavailable
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Finger
October 8, 2022
Helsley's MRI on his right middle finger came back clean Saturday, but he'll nevertheless be unavailable for Game 2 of the Wild Card Series against the Phillies, Bob Nightengale of USA Today reports.
ANALYSIS
Helsley initially suffered the injury while fielding a groundball in his final appearance of the regular season. He didn't look like himself in Game 1 against the Phillies on Friday, losing the plate and throwing less than half of his 33 pitches for strikes while allowing four earned runs before his exit. While he's seemingly escaped a serious injury, that kind of workload will still keep him from pitching again for at least one day.
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Pitching Stats
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2022
2021
2020
2019
2022 MLB Game Log
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2021 MLB Game Log
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2020 MLB Game Log
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2019 MLB Game Log
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Pitching Appearances Breakdown
Average Pitch Count
18
Last 10 Games
18
Last 5 Games
21
How many pitches does Ryan Helsley generally throw?
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
 
1-10
 
11-20
 
21-30
 
31-40
 
41-50
 
51-60
 
61-70
 
71-80
 
81-90
 
91-100
 
101-110
 
111-120
 
121+
What part of the game does Ryan Helsley generally pitch?
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
 
 
 
1st
 
 
 
2nd
 
 
 
3rd
 
 
 
4th
 
 
 
5th
 
 
 
6th
 
 
 
7th
 
 
 
8th
 
 
 
9th
 
Extra
% Games Reaching Innings Threshold
% Games By Number of Innings Pitched
Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2020
 
 
-14%
BAA vs RHP
2022
 
 
-16%
BAA vs RHP
2021
 
 
-14%
BAA vs RHP
2020
 
 
-25%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2020vs Left .190 197 48 21 33 7 0 3
Since 2020vs Right .163 298 103 34 43 9 0 10
2022vs Left .141 100 32 8 13 3 0 2
2022vs Right .118 139 62 12 15 3 0 4
2021vs Left .250 76 12 10 16 3 0 0
2021vs Right .214 130 35 17 24 5 0 4
2020vs Left .222 21 4 3 4 1 0 1
2020vs Right .167 29 6 5 4 1 0 2
More Splits View More Split Stats
Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2020
 
 
-35%
ERA at Home
2022
 
 
-33%
ERA on Road
2021
 
 
-61%
ERA at Home
2020
 
 
-52%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2020Home 2.32 0.94 66.0 8 3 16 10.4 3.4 1.1
Since 2020Away 3.57 1.19 58.0 8 3 5 11.6 4.7 0.8
2022Home 1.46 0.78 37.0 5 1 15 12.6 2.9 1.0
2022Away 0.98 0.69 27.2 4 0 4 13.7 2.6 0.7
2021Home 2.59 1.15 24.1 3 2 1 7.4 4.4 0.7
2021Away 6.65 1.70 23.0 3 2 0 10.6 5.9 0.8
2020Home 7.71 1.07 4.2 0 0 0 7.7 1.9 3.9
2020Away 3.68 1.50 7.1 1 1 1 7.4 8.6 1.2
More Splits View More Split Stats
Stat Review
How does Ryan Helsley compare to other relievers?
This section compares his stats with all relief pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 30 innings)*. The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.

* Exit Velocity, Barrels/BBE %, Balls Hit 95+ MPH %, and Spin Rate are benchmarked against 2019 data (min 30 IP). See here for more exit velocity/barrels stats plus an explanation of current limitations with that data set.
  • K/BB
    Strikeout to walk ratio.
  • K/9
    Average strikeouts per nine innings.
  • BB/9
    Average walks per nine innings.
  • HR/9
    Average home runs allowed per nine innings.
  • Fastball
    Average fastball velocity.
  • ERA
    Earned run average. The average earned runs allowed per nine innings.
  • WHIP
    Walks plus hits per inning pitched.
  • BABIP
    Batting average on balls in play. Measures how many balls in play against a pitcher go for hits.
  • GB/FB
    Groundball to flyball ratio. The higher the number, the more likely a pitcher is to induce groundballs.
  • Left On Base
    The percentage of base runners that a pitcher strands on base over the course of a season.
  • Exit Velocity
    The speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact.
  • Barrels/BBE
    The percentage of batted ball events resulting in a Barrel. A Barrel is a batted ball with similar exit velocity and launch angle to past ones that led to a minimum .500 batting average and 1.500 slugging percentage.
  • Spin Rate
    Spin Rate is the rate of spin on a baseball after it is released. It is measured in revolutions per minute (rpm).
  • Balls Hit 95+ MPH
    The percentage of batted balls hit that met or exceeded the 95 MPH threshold.
  • Swinging Strike
    The percentage of pitches that result in a swing and a miss.
K/BB
4.70
 
K/9
13.1
 
BB/9
2.8
 
HR/9
0.8
 
Fastball
99.7 mph
 
ERA
1.25
 
WHIP
0.74
 
BABIP
.199
 
GB/FB
0.75
 
Left On Base
93.4%
 
Exit Velocity
80.9 mph
 
Barrels/BBE
4.0%
 
Spin Rate
2585 rpm
 
Balls Hit 95+ MPH
16.9%
 
Swinging Strike
18.8%
 
Prospect Rankings History
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Stats Vs Today's Lineup
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Ryan Helsley
2023 Fantasy Baseball Rankings - Way Too Early Top 300 Draft Ranks
40 days ago
James Anderson provides a way too early top 300 rankings for those who have the itch to start drafting for 2023.
Closer Encounters: 2022 Saves in Review, Part 2
42 days ago
Ryan Rufe recaps the saves landscape in this year's NFBC Main Event and shares his own hits and misses from this past season.
Closer Encounters: 2022 Saves in Review, Part 1
48 days ago
Ryan Rufe recaps this past season's saves landscape. Just how many teams preferred closer committees over the conventional approach?
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2021
2020
2019
The most memorable part of Helsley's major-league career to date is how he entered the 2020 season as the de facto closer due to injuries, opt outs and COVID breakouts. The truth is, nothing in his profile really screams "closer." Sure, he can pump gas with the best of them, but the outcomes off his fastball do not exactly validate a fastball-heavy approach to his game. The cutter has served as a nice complement to the fastball, and he has used his curveball as his primary offspeed pitch because his changeup makes the rarest of appearances. He has essentially been split neutral in his time at the big-league level, but 20 walks and eight homers in 48.2 career innings does not make for a high-leverage reliever. There is still room for growth here and you can't quit on high-90s heat, but without consistent control, he is not leaving middle-relief work any time soon.
A starter throughout most of his minor-league career, Helsley transitioned to a relief role during his first season in the majors, tossing 36.2 innings in 24 appearances. The move to the bullpen befits his profile as a flame throwing right-hander with one dominant pitch and questionable control. That dominant pitch is a four-seam fastball that approaches triple-digits on the radar gun and has been graded as his only plus offering. Although Helsley registered a middling 20.9 K% during his time with the Cardinals last season, he averaged over a strikeout per inning throughout his minor-league career and has a curveball that is good enough to function as an effective complement to his heater. The Cardinals are unlikely to have a rotation spot open for Helsley next season, so they will likely again deploy him as a reliever. He could compete for the closer role with Jordan Hicks out to begin the campaign.
A shoulder injury limited Helsley to just 12 starts in 2018, but he showed enough promise in those starts for the Cardinals to add him to the 40-man roster for Rule 5 draft protection. At Double-A Springfield, Triple-A Memphis and one rehab start in rookie ball, the 24-year-old combined for a 3.97 ERA, striking out 28.1% of opposing batters and holding them to a .190 batting average. He did battle some walk issues (11.0 BB%), and that's not a new problem for Helsley. Much of the righty's profile reads like a reliever -- iffy command, a questionable changeup and a fastball that can touch 100 mph. If the Cardinals elect to move him to the bullpen this season, he has the tools to make a big-league impact right away. If they keep him as a starter, it will be harder for Helsley to crack the roster.
More Fantasy News
Heading for MRI
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Finger
October 7, 2022
Helsley will undergo an MRI on the middle finger of his right hand after he exited the Cardinals' loss in Game 1 of the NL Wild Card Series against the Phillies on Friday, John Denton of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Departs Game 1 with injury
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Finger
October 7, 2022
Helsley was removed from Game 1 of the NL Wild Card Series against the Phillies on Friday after he apparently aggravated his jammed right middle finger, Katie Woo of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Available for NL Wild Card Series
PSt. Louis Cardinals
October 6, 2022
Helsley (finger) didn't feel any pain during a side session Thursday and will be included on the Cardinals' wild-card roster, Katie Woo of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Testing finger Thursday
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Finger
October 6, 2022
Helsley (finger) is throwing a bullpen session Thursday to help determine his availability for the NL Wild Card Series against the Phillies, John Denton of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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Nursing jammed finger
PSt. Louis Cardinals
Finger
October 4, 2022
Helsley was removed from Tuesday's game against the Pirates as a precaution with a jammed right middle finger, John Denton of MLB.com reports.
ANALYSIS
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