Among the staggering 11 roster moves the White Sox made Tuesday afternoon came news that two former Red Sox relievers had been cut loose.
Chicago designated lefty Jake Diekman and righty Frank German, clearing room on the 40-man roster as part of a roster overhaul that included Alex Colomé and Billy Hamilton being called up to the majors and another ex-Boston reliever, Joe Kelly, being placed on the paternity list. The 8-21 White Sox clearly were looking to shake things up after a horrendous April.
Diekman owns a 7.94 ERA (10 earned runs in 11 ⅓ innings) over 13 appearances for Chicago this season. Last March, the veteran lefty signed a two-year, $8 million deal with the Red Sox that included a team option for 2024 but only lasted four months in Boston before the club traded him to the White Sox for catcher Reese McGuire at the trade deadline. That move has paid off for the Red Sox, as McGuire has become one of the club’s primary catchers while hitting a .333 with an .839 OPS in 54 games with the club. Diekman had a 7.04 ERA in 39 games with Chicago.
German was a surprising roster cut for the Red Sox over the winter as the player who was designated for assignment to make room for lefty Richard Bleier in late January. The 25-year-old righty was acquired from the Yankees alongside Adam Ottavino in a Jan. 2021 trade and saw his stock rise in the second half of 2022, when he posted a 2.58 ERA and posted a 10.8 K/9 ratio in 38 ⅓ innings at Triple-A. That performance resulted in German getting called up to the majors in late September. German had a disastrous major league debut (he allowed four earned runs without recording an out) and allowed runs in his next three outings before finishing his season with a scoreless frame in Toronto on Oct. 2. After designating him, the Red Sox traded German to Chicago for minor league righty Theo Denlinger, who was a 2021 seventh-round pick.
German struggled with control at Triple-A Charlotte to start this season, walking nine batters and allowing 19 hits in just 11 ⅓ innings. He pitched to a 7.15 ERA. Denlinger has pitched well (0.87 ERA in 10 ⅓ innings) so far at Double-A Portland.