Tigers, Rangers Discussing Joakim Soria

11:10am: Morosi’s colleague, Ken Rosenthal, adds that the Tigers are also interested in Joaquin Benoit but are not actively pursuing Huston Street at this time (Twitter links). The Tigers, according to a rival executive with whom Rosenthal spoke, are interested in adding a reliever that doesn’t view himself as a pure closer, suggesting that a new acquisition may not supplant Nathan as the primary ninth-inning option.

9:57am: The Tigers and Rangers are having ongoing discussions about Texas closer Joakim Soria, reports Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports 1 (on Twitter).

The back end of the bullpen was a worry that Detroit GM Dave Dombrowski hoped not to have when he signed Joe Nathan this offseason, but the former Twins/Rangers stopper hasn’t pitched like himself in 2014. Nathan has posted a 5.61 ERA in 33 2/3 innings with the Tigers, and while his strikeout rate remains strong (9.4 K/9), his walks are up and his fastball is averaging a career-worst 91.7 mph. That velocity dip could have something to do with the increase in his home run rate and decrease in swinging-strike rate as well.

Soria, on the other hand, has been excellent in his first full season back from Tommy John surgery. The former Royals closer has turned in the best strikeout and walk rates of his career (11.9 K/9, 1.2 BB/9) en route to a 2.67 ERA and 16 saves in 30 1/3 innings of relief work.

An acquisition of Soria would give the Tigers an improved ninth-inning option not only for 2014 but also 2015, as his contract contains a $7MM club option ($500K buyout). Beyond that, Soria is highly affordable in 2014, as he’s earning just a $5.5MM salary, of which $2.19MM remains.

This would be the second straight season in which the Tigers have acquired bullpen help, should a deal come to fruition. However, the asking price on Soria will undoubtedly be higher than last year’s asking price for Jose Veras. Detroit sent Danry Vasquez and David Paulino to Houston in order to complete that deal.

The Rangers have reportedly been receiving a good deal of interest in their bullpen arms, and they’ve already shown a willingness to move veteran pieces by sending Jason Frasor to the Royals this week.

56 Responses to Tigers, Rangers Discussing Joakim Soria Leave a Reply

  1. Ausome7 12 months ago

    What about Feliz… Seems like a typical DD arm.

    • cgriffith 12 months ago

      I agree strengthen the pen even more

      • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 12 months ago

        Feliz has pitched a total of 12.1 inning in the last 2 years. Not sure how much he would strengthen the pen.

    • Ftnwo Glass 12 months ago

      We already have a post-TJS question mark in Joel Hanrahan. I’m sure DD is looking for more of a sure thing from a deadline trade.

      • Ausome7 12 months ago

        If it’s in our bullpen it’s never a “sure thing”

  2. cgriffith 12 months ago

    Let’s get greedy ask about Choo also

    • oz10 12 months ago

      You can have choo. Give him to you for a bag of balls to get out of that already bad contract.

      • Ben-Dessa Anderton 12 months ago

        It wouldn’t be so bad if he had guys behind him capable of driving
        in runs. But I was never a fan for signing him.

        • oz10 12 months ago

          Those guys that could possibly drive in runs wouldn’t help him in the outfield. He makes Nelson Cruz look like a gold glover.

        • oz10 12 months ago

          Those guys that could possibly drive in runs wouldn’t help him in the outfield. He makes Nelson Cruz look like a gold glover.

    • FOmeOLS 12 months ago

      Acquiring Choo was less bad than getting Fielder, but he is another poster child for why long term contracts are generally bad ideas.

      • oz10 12 months ago

        I had that surgery last year (June 26) and am stronger than ever right now. It completely explains the drop in power over the last two years. The weakness is so gradual that you don’t notice it but then it gets to the point that the pain starts so you go looking for help. I can look back to my workouts the couple of years before and it explains everything as to why I was getting weaker. I just chalked it up to getting old and plateauing. I started in crossfit the October following my surgery and feel the best I have ever felt. I would put money on him coming back and being a top 10 power guy again.

        Now saying that, I completely agree with you on these long term deals and especially with pitchers. I think the NBA has free agency figured out a little better but it wouldn’t work in the MLB because of no salary cap. Would be interesting though if they limited the years and gave the team the player was currently on the ability to sign for 1 or 2 more.

        • Ben-Dessa Anderton 12 months ago

          I have seen you post something similar and agree with you wholeheartedly. He may never hit 40 homers again but I think a steady 25-30 a year is all the Rangers want.

    • Ben-Dessa Anderton 12 months ago

      Take the contract. But word to the wise, he is possibly being shut down for the season with the bum ankle.

  3. IZZONE 12 months ago

    So better than Vasquez and Paulino. So Feilds and Maciel maybe. They are both upgrades over the previous 2.

  4. bobbleheadguru 12 months ago

    I would think that Dombrowski would wait… until the price is low enough. Maybe it is getting there.

    Tigers have at least 7 arms they seem to be targeting… If they are not too picky, they should get one in a good deal.

    • IZZONE 12 months ago

      Yeah. That’s smart.

    • rct 12 months ago

      As bad as Nathan has been, his BABIP against is a ridiculous .330 and as the article mentions, his Ks are in line with his career numbers. Got to think he’ll be better in the 2nd half if he can tighten up his control. DD should wait it out.

      • tune-in for baseball 12 months ago

        Even if Nathan improves his control, he still cannot close multiple nights in a row effectively. Tigers need another solid 8/9 inning guy to rotate with Nathan and Jobba. It will be vital in post season.

    • Kirk Edward Gerwin 12 months ago

      That strategy worked oh so well for Mr I’s other team in Detroit.

  5. MadmanTX 12 months ago

    Soria for Kinsler so he can sell beer in the stands to thirsty Rangers fans…oh and the Tigers top 3 prospects.

    • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 12 months ago

      Prince Fielder can sell beer in between his nude photo shoots. Kinsler is playing well for DET.

    • cgriffith 12 months ago

      Haha, Never. Ok in return we’ll take Beltre, Choo, and Andrus plus Profar and cash considerations (see how that works!)

  6. Polly McDonald 12 months ago

    Nearing 40 years old, I think that Nathan’s career is near an end.

    • Leslie Hoerwinkle 12 months ago

      Really going out on a limb with that prediction, aren’t you?

      • Polly McDonald 11 months ago

        Well, he’s old, his ERA is awful, and I think that he’s not performing well because he recently divorced. He could either retire or play poorly for another team for maybe one or two more years. I know that some guys play ’til they’re really old, but Nathan is struggling too much, in my opinion.

  7. tune-in for baseball 12 months ago

    Soria would be a perfect addition, depending upon how much we have to give away to get him. It would be interested to see if we sweetened the pot just a little more and picked up Benoit and Seth Smith from the Padres.

  8. FOmeOLS 12 months ago

    Anyone know if the Tigers are interested in Houston’s Tony Sipp? The guy has been miraculous since being picked up on waivers from the Padres.

    • tune-in for baseball 12 months ago

      Tony Sipp was a name being tossed around the early rumor mills but I think Detroit feels they are all set with Leftys. One name I have never heard mentioned is LaTroy Hawkins. He is having a pretty good year and his contract looks affordable.

  9. gnats 12 months ago

    The problem with trading Soria to DET is that they have no pitching prospects worth trading for.

    Gonna need a 3rd team involved or it probably will not work.

    • Drew VerHagen is not a pitching prospect? Actually, the Tigers have a decent amount of depth at both Triple A and Double A.

      • Tigers fan for life 12 months ago

        relievers are never really work a lot therefore we should be able to get Soria for a top 10-20 prospect of Detroit`s maybe 2 look what we got Veras for.

      • Chase Johnston 12 months ago

        Not particularly interested in verhagen.

  10. Barry2 12 months ago

    What are the Rangers asking for? They probably want MLB ready player so they can get back into the race next year. I wonder McCann is on their scope?. Verhagen should become at least MLB reliever.

    • Baseball Lifer 12 months ago

      As bad as the Ranger’s pitching has been (for various reasons), I would think a “MLB ready player” would have to be some sort of pitcher (SP or RP). If not, I do not think Joakim will be traded given his fairly cheap 2015 club option.

      • Barry2 12 months ago

        If I was the Ranger I would take a double look at Smith (RP). I don’t think they will the Tigers will give up Knebel.

      • Barry2 12 months ago

        If I was the Ranger I would take a double look at Smith (RP). I don’t think they will the Tigers will give up Knebel.

  11. TribeTime 12 months ago

    For Huston Street or Joaquin Benoit (Or Both), the Tigers will probably need to get rid of a prospect(s).

  12. Highland Moon 12 months ago

    Don’t give up Soria!! We need him!

    • Need him for what? He MAY get a chance to close a game once every two weeks. He has value to other teams, why not trade him and replenish our farm system?

      • Ben-Dessa Anderton 12 months ago

        3-22 in the last 25 games. I love the Rangers but have enough sense to realize that type of record will be a norm the second half. Why do they need Soria?

    • EightMileCats 12 months ago

      I don’t understand this mentality. Texas is out of contention this year. Why not trade a commodity that will bolster your farm/team for next year while you can. Especially a reliever, which is such an up and down position anyway.

      • Chase Johnston 12 months ago

        Probably because he’s super cheap next year.

        • EightMileCats 12 months ago

          Sure, but there will be other relievers out there. When the Tigers go into a rebuild after this window closes(hopefully a short season or two rebuild), I’m all for selling relievers.

          Not many relievers are consistent like Mo was. A lot of relievers have ups and downs year to year. Why not sell on him while the team is out of contention and try to nab something that may be of more use than a reliever next year

  13. Ben-Dessa Anderton 12 months ago

    Where is the praise for Jon Daniels not resigning Joe Nathan? Everyone loves to point out all the bad decisions. Regarding Soria, deal him. No need for him at this point. Maybe Feliz can jump back on the horse.

  14. Dodger 12 months ago

    What’s the point of a closer when middle relief can’t hold the lead?? Two straight games blown. Bring up a starter and put Smyly back in the pen.

  15. cgriffith 11 months ago

    Per Jon Paul Morosi “After Padres got Jose Rondon in the Huston Street package, Rangers can justify asking the Tigers for Willy Adames in Joakim Soria talks.” looks like the talks are progressing

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