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1/21/1987 (30 y, 29 d)
2007 June Amateur Draft - Round: 30, Pick: 19, Overall: 923, Team: Philadelphia Phillies
$2.6M / 1 Years (2017)
Diekman (abdomen) expects to be pitching by the All-Star break, Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. (2/15/2017)
Abdomen, 60-Day DL
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(Click Year to Expand /
Diekman is a very good lefty specialist, as he has allowed a slash line of just .165/.276/.189 to lefties in his two major-league seasons. He's not awful against right-handers (.279/.379/.390), but his splits are still extreme enough to keep him entrenched in the lefty specialist role. (
The Quick Opinion:
The 26-year-old can pile up the strikeouts, especially against lefties, but his career walk rate of 4.93 per nine innings is atrocious (almost as bad as his 5.05 BB/9 in 427.1 minor-league innings), and the splits are significant enough to keep him out of the late-inning picture.
Entering the 2013 season, the left-handed Diekman had recorded a walk rate below 10% only once in his entire professional career -- back in 2007, as a 20-year-old in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League. He crossed that threshold again, though, in 2013 over 38.1 innings for the parent club. He wasn't able to repeat that effort this past season, but it was at least an indication that he had probably managed his control problems sufficiently to let his raw stuff play. With regard to that raw stuff: among pitcher who made at least a single appearance in 2014, only one left-hander (Aroldis Chapman) recorded a higher average fastball velocity than Diekman, who sat at 96.9 mph over 71.0 innings for the Phils. He still has a pretty substantial platoon split, but he's strong enough against left-handed batters that his troubles with right-handed ones are tolerable. He'll be responsible for late-inning work in 2015. (Carson Cistulli)
The Quick Opinion:
There's not a long history of left-handers who throw 95-plus failing to cobble together a major-league career -- largely because there's not a long history of left-handers throwing 95-plus mph. Provided Diekman can remain healthy and find the strike zone, he should produce above-average numbers in relief.
Traded from the Phillies to the Rangers in the Cole Hamels deal, Jake Diekman features a mid-90's fastball as a left-hander, which has often led to lengthy major league careers in the past. Diekman pitched better in his time with the Rangers than with the Phillies, despite fewer strikeouts and a similar FIP. Diekman's problem has long been his command, so the fact that he walked fewer batters in his 21.2 innings in Texas is a positive end to the season. Heading into this year, Diekman will likely be the primary left-handed option out of the Ranger bullpen. There is not a clear outlet to saves via injury to Shawn Tolleson as the Rangers would likely opt for recently acquired Tom Wilhelmsen or last year's bullpen ace Keone Kala before they got to Diekman. The lefty did get 10 holds in 26 appearances with the Rangers which was significantly more than he did with the Phillies, so the leagues to look at Diekman in would specifically be holds leagues. He throws hard and has often had high strikeout rates, but his best ERA's have come when he has kept the walks down. Keep eye on his command if you are an owner or prospective owner of him in holds leagues. (Ben Duronio)
The Quick Opinion:
This hard-throwing left-hander will feature as the lefty set-up man in Texas which should give him an opportunity to get holds in a lot of games. If your league counts holds, Diekman is an intriguing option after a solid debut with the Rangers.
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Updated: Sunday, February 19, 2017 3:33 AM ET
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