Soria in his first stint pitching for the Royals
|Kansas City Royals – No. 48|
May 18, 1984 |
Monclova, Coahuila, Mexico
|April 4, 2007, for the Kansas City Royals|
(through August 23, 2016)
|Earned run average||2.71|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Central American and Caribbean Games|
Joakim Agustín Soria Ramos (born May 18, 1984) is a Mexican professional baseball relief pitcher for the Kansas City Royals of Major League Baseball (MLB). He previously played for the Texas Rangers, Detroit Tigers and Pittsburgh Pirates.
Soria began his professional career in the Mexican League, before briefly playing in minor league baseball for the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres organizations. The Royals selected Soria from the Padres in the Rule 5 draft after the 2006 season, and he debuted with the Royals in 2007. Soria is a two-time MLB All-Star.
Mexican League career
Soria has played for his country's Diablos Rojos del México (in the Mexican Baseball League) and Yaquis de Obregón in the Winter League. He played for the Class-A Fort Wayne Wizards as well. On December 9, 2006 in the Mexican Winter League, Soria threw a perfect game against the Naranjeros de Hermosillo.
Major League Baseball career
Kansas City Royals
In 2006, Soria was drafted at the age of 22 by the Kansas City Royals in the Rule 5 draft out of the San Diego Padres organization in 2006. He debuted for the Royals in the 2007 season, and had a record of 2–3 with 17 saves and an ERA of 2.48.
Soria opened the 2008 season with 13 straight saves, breaking Al Hrabosky's club record of 11. He was scored on in just two of 35 outings. He went 161⁄3 innings before giving up a run and in one stretch retired 24 straight batters.
On May 17, 2008, Soria signed a 3-year, $8.75 million extension to his contract with the Royals, following his impressive performance as the team's closer in the first quarter of the season.
Soria's fantastic start led to him being selected to play in the 2008 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Soria was the Royals' lone representative in the All-Star Game. He was the first Royals closing pitcher to be named an All-Star since Mike MacDougal in 2003. He pitched 1⅔ innings, striking out the Florida Marlins' Dan Uggla and New York Mets' David Wright.
Soria had injuries but he finished the 2009 year strong with a 3–2 record with 30 saves out of 33 chances.
On May 26, 2010 Soria got his 100th save against the Texas Rangers. Soria was picked for the 2010 All-Star Game, the second of his career. He finished the season with a 1.78 ERA and 43 saves in 46 opportunities.
Soria struggled out of the gate in the 2011 season, blowing five of his first twelve save opportunities. After blowing saves on back to back days, Soria was replaced as closer by Aaron Crow on May 30. After a couple of good relief appearances in a non-closer role, Yost announced on June 6 that Soria had earned the position back.
On April 3, 2012, Soria underwent Tommy John surgery to repair a damaged UCL in his right elbow, causing him to miss the entire 2012 season. The Royals declined his 2013 option on October 31, making him a free agent.
On December 4, 2012, Soria signed a 2-year contract worth $8 million with the Texas Rangers with a club option for 2015. He started the season on the 60-day disabled list as he was still recovering from surgery. He made his first appearance for Texas on July 7, 2013. After former closer Joe Nathan signed with the Detroit Tigers in the offseason, Soria was named the new Rangers closer for the 2014 season.
Second stint with the Royals
On December 10, 2015, Soria signed a 3-year, $25 million contract to return to the Royals.
Soria throws five pitches. He relies primarily on his fastball and cut fastball. Both pitches average about 90 miles per hour (140 km/h), with the fastball topping out near 94 miles per hour (151 km/h) and the cutter topping out around 93 miles per hour (150 km/h). He mixes in a slider in the low 80s, a slow curveball around 70 miles per hour (110 km/h), and an occasional changeup in the low- to mid-80s.
- "Joakim Soria se fue" (in Spanish). ESPN Deportes. December 9, 2006. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- Kaegel, Dick. Soria heading to All-Star Game MLB.com, July 6, 2008.
- Associated Press. ESPN – Royals pitcher Soria agrees to 3-year, $8.75M extension, ESPN.com, May 17, 2008.
- "Soria fitting right in with All-Star idols". Mlb.mlb.com. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- "Soria duplicates idol's All-Star outing". Mlb.mlb.com. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- "Joakim Soria Stats". ESPN. Retrieved May 21, 2010.
- "Recap: Kansas City vs. Texas". USA Today. July 6, 2010. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Joakim Soria Statistics and History". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- Kaegel, Dick (May 30, 2011). "Aaron Crow will replace Joakim Soria as the Royals' closer". MLB.com. Retrieved May 30, 2011.
- "Toronto Blue Jays vs. Kansas City Royals – Recap – June 06, 2011 – ESPN". Scores.espn.go.com. June 6, 2011. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- "Royals' Joakim Soria out for season". 2012. Retrieved March 24, 2012.
- "Royals decline option on closer Joakim Soria". Yahoo! Sports. Associated Press. October 31, 2012. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Rangers sign Joakim Soria". Espn.go.com. January 1, 2008. Retrieved December 5, 2012.
- "Five Rangers relievers pitch scoreless inning in win vs. Astros". ESPN.com. Associated Press. July 7, 2013. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Rangers getting closer to opening day roster". USA Today. Associated Press. March 22, 2014. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Tigers land All-Star reliever Soria from Rangers". MLB.com. July 23, 2014. Retrieved July 23, 2014.
- "Tigers acquire closer Joakim Soria from Rangers". ESPN.com. Associated Press. July 23, 2014. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- Zúñiga, Alejandro (July 23, 2015). "Soria notches milestone 200th save". MLB.com. Retrieved July 23, 2015.
- Paul, Tony (July 30, 2015). "Tigers trade Soria to Pirates for SS Jones". The Detroit News. Retrieved July 30, 2015.
- "Royals bring back Joakim Soria". FOXSports. December 10, 2015. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
- "Joakim Soria Pitch Fx at fangraphs.com". fangraphs.com. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Spring training 2011: Kansas City Royals' Joakim Soria wants to get rid of 'Mexicutioner' nickname". ESPN.com. Retrieved February 23, 2011.
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