ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that the Diamondbacks have acquired lefty reliever Jake Diekman from the Rangers. Diekman is a free agent after the season, so this is strictly a rental for the D-Backs. Robert Murray of The Athletic reports that the Rangers will get minor league pitcher Wei-Chieh Huang from the D-Backs.
Diekman, 31, has posted a 3.69 ERA with 48 strikeouts and 23 walks in 39 innings for the Rangers this season. He missed most of last season having three different surgeries for ulcerative colitis.
The 59-49 Diamondbacks enter Tuesday just a half-game behind the Dodgers for first place in the NL West. The club already has two lefties in the bullpen in Jorge De La Rosa and T.J. McFarland. McFarland has performed well while De La Rosa has not, but it remains to be seen how the Diamondbacks will make room for Diekman on the roster.
Huang, 24, has split his season between High-A Visalia and Double-A Jackson. Combined, he has put up a 2.31 ERA with a 78/23 K/BB ratio in 58 1/3 innings across two starts and 27 relief appearances.
In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay minor league players $400 per week while the sport is shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. That provision is set to expire at the end of May. As Craig noted earlier, the Athletics will not be paying their minor leaguers starting on June 1.
Several teams are doing the right thing, continuing to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week through at least the end of June. Per The Athletic’s Levi Weaver and James Fegan, the Rangers and White Sox will each tack on another month of pay. The Athletic’s Dennis Lin reported earlier that the Padres will pay their players through the end of August. Craig also cited a Baseball America report from this morning, which mentioned that the Marlins will also pay their players through the end of August.
Frankly, if the Marlins can find a way to continue paying their minor league players, then every team should be able to do the same. The Marlins are widely believed to be the least profitable among the 30 major league clubs. Here’s hoping the rest of the league follows the Rangers’, White Sox’s, Padres’, and Marlins’ lead as opposed to the Athletics’.