Veteran relief pitcher Joakim Soria of Monclova, Mexico has come to terms with the Arizona Diamondbacks. According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, Soria has signed a one-year contract worth $3.5 million according to Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic. There is a possibility that Soria could make an additional $500,000 if he meets certain criteria.
The Diamondbacks will be the eighth team Soria has played for. He has also pitched for the Kansas City Royals, the Texas Rangers, Detroit Tigers, Pittsburgh Pirates, Chicago White Sox, Milwaukee Brewers, and Oakland Athletics.
Last season with the Athletics, Soria pitched in 22 games, and had a record of two wins and two losses, with two saves, and an earned run average of 2.82. In 22 1/3 innings pitched, Soria also had four holds, and gave up 18 hits, 10 walks, and seven earned runs, along with 24 strikeouts, and a WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) of 1.25.
Even though Soria only had two saves for the Athletics in 2020, he should be considered a potential closer for Arizona in 2021. That is because he has significant experience finishing games, as he has 223 career saves. Twice with the Royals, Soria reached the 40 save plateau, and was an All-Star. He had 42 saves with Kansas City in 2008, and 43 saves with Kansas City in 2010.
The Diamondbacks previous closer, Archie Bradley of Muskogee, OK, signed a one-year deal worth $6 million with the Philadelphia Phillies. Another potential closer for Arizona could be Stefan Crichton of Houston, TX, who had five saves for the Diamondbacks in 2020, with a very respectable earned run average of 2.42. However one must realize these were Crichton’s first five Major League Baseball saves, while Soria has 223 career saves.
The Diamondbacks are not expected to contend for a National League West Division title this year. They have the World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers, and the rising San Diego Padres to deal with.