Joakim Soria was one of the best Rule V draft picks in recent history. Plucked from Padres’ organization prior to the 2007 season, he quickly emerged as an excellent reliever for the Royals, eventually becoming their closer. While he was never the same after Tommy John surgery in 2012, he still continued to be a solid reliever.
But that time is now at an end. Soria has announced his retirement, putting an end to a solid 14 year career.
Former Oakland A’s reliever Joakim Soria retires
Soria put together a solid career. A two time All Star, he posted a lifetime 3.11 ERA and a 1.132 WHiP in his 763 innings, striking out 831 batters with 231 walks. Although he drifted in and out of the closer role following his excellent five year run in Kansas City, he still notched 229 career saves, eclipsing the 40 save plateau twice.
By the time Soria came to the Oakland A’s, he was on the downside of his career. However, he was still a reasonably solid reliever, posting a 3.94 ERA and a 1.094 WHiP over his 91.1 innings with the A’s, striking out 103 batters with 30 walks.
There were certainly times when it seemed as though he was walking a tightrope. His command started to fade during the 2020 campaign, although that may have been the result of the abbreviated season and the short second spring training.
That 2020 season would be the last solid one of his career. While he pitched for the Diamondbacks and Blue Jays last season, Soria had nothing left. He posted the worst ERA and highest home run rate of his career, his time as a solid reliever over. It is something that he was apparently aware of as well, as Soria has decided to ride off into the sunset.
Former Oakland A’s reliever Joakim Soria has decided that it is time to retire. His solid 14 year career has now come to an end.