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Oakland acquires reliever Jake Diekman from Royals


The Oakland Athletics have acquired left-handed relief pitcher Jake Diekman in a trade with the Kansas City Royals, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN. The Royals will receive pitching prospect Ismael Aquino and outfield prospect Dairon Blanco in return, per Ty Bradley of MLB Trade Rumors.

Diekman has appeared in 48 games out of the bullpen this season, going 0-6 with a 4.75 ERA. While his ERA is shaky, his peripherals are decent, as he has allowed just 33 hits while striking out 63 batters over 41.2 innings of work, posting a 3.37 FIP.

The 32-year-old was originally selected by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 30th round of the 2007 MLB Draft and made his big-league debut in 2012, making 32 appearances and pitching to the tune of a 3.95 ERA.

Diekman spent his first three-and-a-half seasons with the Phillies, displaying great strikeout prowess. In 2014, for example, he fanned 100 hitters across 71 frames of action.

He was traded to the Texas Rangers in July 2015 and had some success, logging a 2.08 ERA through 26 relief appearances in 2015 and then going on to post a 3.40 ERA while registering 59 punchouts over 53 innings in 2016.

Injuries then limited Diekman to just 10.2 innings with the Rangers in 2017, and in 2018, he was traded from Texas to the Arizona Diamondbacks midway through the season. Across 71 outings and 53.1 frames overall in 2018, Diekman recorded a 4.73 ERA.

Diekman owns a lifetime 3.87 ERA and has struck out 446 batters through 353.2 innings. However, due to control issues, he lays claim to a pedestrian 2.32 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

The Athletics currently own a record of 58-47 and are firmly in the American League Wild Card race.