LOS ANGELES – Texas Rangers pitcher Jake Diekman and his fiancée Amanda Soltero have created a nonprofit organization to help people living with various forms of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
The Wymore native has not pitched this season as he receives treatment for ulcerative colitis, one of the most common types of IBD, which he’s had since he was 10 years old. He named his organization the Gut It Out Foundation because that’s been his mantra as he recovers from surgery.
Diekman said in a release, “I opened up about living with ulcerative colitis over two years ago and I never imagined the impact that it would have on my life. I’ve learned how powerful it is to bring people together, online and in person, to talk about the good and the bad of IBD. I will continue to do that through the Foundation and I know it can be a catalyst for solutions or improvements to the community.”
The foundation will be managed by Diekman’s agency, Beverly Hills Sports Council, and will be dedicated to improving the quality of life for people living with IBD. It’s currently accepting donations online at gutitoutfoundation.org to benefit research at the Mayo Clinic in Minneapolis with a goal of reaching $10,000 by Oct. 1.
Diekman has undergone a series of three surgeries this year at the Mayo Clinic to remove a significant portion of his large intestine. The 2005 graduate of Southern High School returned to Wymore in February and was recognized between the boys and girls basketball games after he provided shoes for all the players on Southern’s teams. The school presented him with a check for $1,000 to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America.
Diekman has not pitched this season after his final surgery was done in June. He’s expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment in the coming weeks and hopes to return to the majors before the end of the season.
Fiancé, Soltero, is a 2010 graduate from Columbus High School.