"He had a change of heart," Beinfest said.
Escobar's contract includes $5 million options for 2014 and 2015. His acquisition allows Ben Zobrist to serve in a utility role.
"We believe that he's going to fit in really well in our clubhouse," Friedman said. "It sounds like he's extremely happy about being here, being a Ray, and he knows he's going to be welcomed into our clubhouse. But yeah, I think it's safe to say we did a lot of work on it, talked to a lot of people and felt comfortable that it's a calculated risk on a good player that we feel like can help us and fit in really well in our environment."
The 23-year-old Dietrich, a second-round draft pick in 2010, was selected MVP of Class-A Charlotte this year, batting .282 with a team-high 10 homers and 58 RBIs. He was promoted to Double-A Montgomery on July 28 and finished with a combined .279 average with 14 homers and 75 RBIs.
AP Baseball Writer Ben Walker contributed to this report.