The Oakland A’s were going to give plenty of players a chance to prove themselves in the majors. Even if they were not particularly young, those career minor leaguers were going to get a chance as the A’s began their rebuild. That included Dany Jimenez, a pitcher that they had an eye on for some time.
There were going to be failures. Some, if not most of those players, were going to flame out, showing that they truly were nothing more than Triple-A depth pieces. Others would prove that all they needed was a chance and that they could be viable major league options.
Dany Jimenez making case for AL Rookie of the Year
Jimenez appears to be one of the latter. He has produced a 2.25 ERA and a 1.050 WHiP in his 20 innings, striking out 21 batters with eight walks. Since taking over the closer role, he has converted ten of his 11 chances, showing the A’s that he could be the long term answer for the ninth inning.
He was entirely overshadowed by other rookies at the start of the year. Bobby Witt Jr., Jeremy Pena, Spencer Torkelson, and Adley Rutschman (despite starting the season in the minors) were the favorites for the AL Rookie of the Year. As the season has continued, the likes of Joe Ryan and Julio Rodriguez have entered the conversation as well.
And yet, Jimenez has had a stellar showing in his own right. While he may be overshadowed by those other players, and due to his place on a rebuilding team, he deserves attention for the Rookie of the Year vote as well. In almost any other year, he would receive consideration for the award.
That should be the case this year as well. It is unlikely that Jimenez takes home the hardware, even if he ends the year as one of the better closers in the game. However, he certainly deserves a lot more attention, and votes, as one of the top rookies in the AL.
Dany Jimenez has been a revelation for the Oakland A’s. His excellent showing as their closer should garner attention for the AL Rookie of the Year award.