Texas Rangers Deal Jake Diekman to Arizona in the Eleventh Hour
By Kenneth Nash
With less than 30 minutes to go on deadline day, the Texas Rangers found a trade partner for Jake Diekman and sent the lefty to Arizona.
For much of the trade deadline season, Jake Diekman seemed the most likely candidate to be traded from the Texas Rangers. Despite the almost foregone conclusion, it took until the very end of the deadline day for a deal to be done. Now Diekman has to make the long walk to the Diamondbacks home locker room this afternoon since the Rangers are already in Arizona for this inter-league series.
Diekman was one of a number of relievers on the trade market this season. The hard throwing lefty has appeared in 47 games for the Rangers and while he hasn’t been in peak form, he’s been more than serviceable. Most of Diekman’s struggles have come at home for Texas in Globe Life Park where he’s posted a 7.50 ERA and opponents are hitting .288 against him. On the road however, Jake has been dominant holding opponents to a .141 batting average and an ERA under 0.50.
What We Got Back
In return for Diekman, the Rangers got pitching prospect Wei-Chieh Huang. The 24-year old was the 22nd ranked prospect in the Diamondbacks system according to MLB Prospect Watch prior to the trade. Mainly a reliever, Huang has been stellar in Double-A this season appearing in 10 games, posting an ERA of 2.00 in 27 innings. Opponents are hitting just .208 against him this year in Double-A and he has WHIP of just 1.00. There was originally hope among the Arizona front office that Huang could be a starter but he seems to be cemented as a reliever from now on. Still, his plus fastball and curve represent a devastating two pitch combo that will translate well to the big leagues. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Texas try and stretch him out as a starter and he has made two Double-A starts this year but injuries have hindered that plan in the past.
Along with Huang, the Rangers will also acquire a Player to Be Named Later. It’s unknown at this point what the quality of this PTBNL will be but I would imagine it will be a fringe prospect. The Rangers also sent cash considerations to Arizona but it’s unknown the amount.
Be sure to check back tomorrow when we’ll have our grade on the Jake Diekman trade.