Nebraska native Jake Diekman signs with Kansas City Royals

February 15, 2019 GMT

Nebraska native and Southern graduate Jake Diekman signed with the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday.

Diekman, of Wymore, just turned 32 and appeared in 71 games combined between the Texas Rangers and Arizona Diamondbacks last season, going 1-2 with two saves, 17 holds and a 4.73 ERA.

A 30th-round draft pick by the Philadelphia Phillies in 2007, Diekman is entering his eighth season in the MLB. His career strikeout rate (11.05) ranks second in the majors among active left-handed relievers who have thrown at least 300 innings.

Jeffrey Flanagan, who covers the Royals for MLB.com, reported that the deal has a mutual option for 2020 and that Diekman will receive a $2.25 million salary base.