Diekman's K's to support IBD research fund

May 20th, 2021

OAKLAND -- has often found a way to come up with a strikeout in critical moments for the A’s. Those strikeouts will now be making an even bigger impact off the field.

Gut It Out, the foundation started by Diekman and his wife, Amanda, announced on Wednesday -- World IBD Day -- that it will be partnering with Stanford Maternal and Child Health Research Institute. The two entities will start a fund for a Stanford Medicine pilot grant to research structural racism, social injustice and health disparities within inflammatory bowel disease.

Diekman will look to turn his success on the field into money for the fund. The left-hander has pledged to donate $100 for every strikeout he earns this season. There's also a way for fans to donate towards the grant at pledgeit.org/gutitout2021. Those who donate will have a chance to win exclusive prizes, including a limited edition “Gut It Out” t-shirt.

“As a professional athlete, I’ve had access to the top treatment in the U.S. to treat my ulcerative colitis,” Diekman said in a statement. “It breaks my heart to know that many of the most at-risk and in-need IBD patients are not able to access the treatment they need and deserve. We are confident that this research can help those patients, and will have a lasting impact in diverse communities.”

IBD is a disease that really hits close for Diekman. The 34-year-old was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis at age 10 and underwent a three-part surgery to remove and replace his colon, beginning in January 2017 when he was with the Rangers. The mission of his foundation is to connect patients and caregivers through education and inspiration in order to strengthen relationships and resources within the inflammatory bowel disease community.

With the support of fans who make their own pledge, Diekman has a goal to raise $30,000 through the Pledge It campaign. Fans who join the campaign are eligible for rewards that include game tickets, autographed items and a customized video message from Diekman.

The pilot grant is aimed at supporting research that highlights the health disparities in the maternal and child health community with IBD, as well as focusing on reasons for those disparities. More information about the grant is available at med.stanford.edu/mchri/programs/diversity.