The Oakland A’s had been waiting for Jordan Diaz to have his breakout season. While there was no question that he would hit, the A’s needed to see more than an ability to make contact. If Diaz was to stick at third, he needed to show much more power than he had through his minor league career.
That breakout season came in 2021. Diaz was finally able to tap into his power potential, producing a career best .820 OPS with 13 homers and 24 doubles in his 365 plate appearances. Given that production in High-A, it is understandable that the A’s would look forward to what he does in the proving grounds of Double-A next season.
Jordan Diaz forcing difficult decision on Oakland A’s
There is just one issue when it comes to that plan. Diaz is again eligible for the Rule V Draft, forcing the A’s into a decision as to whether or not to add him to the 40 man roster. If they do not, they run the risk of losing him in the draft to another franchise.
The A’s faced the same dilemma last year. Diaz was in Low-A in 2019, and was unable to perform in front of other teams due to the pandemic in 2020. The A’s made the decision not to put him on the 40 man roster, a gamble that paid off when Diaz was not selected.
That decision is not as cut and dry this season. While Diaz is still realistically a year or two away from making an impact on a major league roster, a rebuilding team with nothing to lose could give him a look at the major league level. His ability to make contact could give him a chance to contribute.
Unlike last year, there is an actual risk that the A’s could lose Diaz. Even though he still needs to prove himself at the higher levels, his potential could make him worth the risk. If nothing else, a team could keep him on the end of the bench for a year, then give him the time needed to develop in the minors.
The Oakland A’s have a difficult decision to make with Jordan Diaz. Unlike last year, there is a real chance they could lose him in the Rule V Draft.