Center relievers are sometimes ignored in any award voting, however Oakland A’s reliever Jake Diekman deserved some consideration for the AL Reliever of the 12 months.
Typically instances, center relievers are an ignored a part of a workforce. They toil in relative anonymity, perhaps choosing up the occasional maintain, however would not have the one statistical class that the typical fan appears at. And but, ought to they wrestle simply as soon as, the fanbase is asking for his or her heads
There have been few causes for Oakland A’s followers to really feel that method about Jake Diekman in the course of the common season. He was as near untouchable as potential, permitting two runs, just one earned, over 21.1 innings. Opponents solely managed eight hits all yr, strolling 12 instances with 31 strikeouts.
As sturdy of a season as Diekman had, it could be comprehensible if it went unnoticed. He’s not going to obtain any votes for MVP or Cy Younger. He was not included within the finalists for the AL Reliever of the 12 months vote both, though teammate Liam Hendriks greater than deserved his nomination.
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However that’s actually part of the job description. Diekman, and the handfuls like him, are destined to pitch all through their careers with out a lot recognition. It’s potential for these pitchers to be pushed into a job that places them entrance and heart, resembling occurred with Hendriks final yr, however these moments are few and much between.
That very same position change might befall Diekman. Hendriks is a free agent, leaving the A’s with a gaping gap at nearer. Diekman is among the pitchers who has been mentioned as a possible alternative for subsequent season, particularly as he’s below workforce management by way of 2022. At $4 million subsequent season, and one other $4 million if that choice is picked up, he could be an reasonably priced choice.
Possibly, if Diekman is the A’s nearer subsequent yr, he can get a few of that recognition. If he dominates the best way he did this season, and continues to be nearly untouchable, perhaps he can get some consideration for the Reliever of the 12 months award. In any other case, he’ll proceed to toil on in obscurity.
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Oakland A’s reliever Jake Diekman had a wonderful 2021 marketing campaign. Simply don’t count on anybody to note.