Ball Star

Andy McCullough blogs about the Royals and baseball

Soria drawing interest

11/05/2012 5:07 PM

05/16/2014 8:12 PM

   It appears former Royals closer Joakim Soria is a popular man in the free-agent market.

   His agent, Oscar Suarez, reports eight teams have already expressed interest and told ESPN New York that Soria would be willing to sign with the Yankees as a setup man for Mariano Rivera.

   "If the Yankees call, we will be all ears," Suarez said. "If there is a fit, Joakim would be elated to work with Mo. He would close everywhere but there."

   Soria, 28, became a free agent last week when the Royals declined to pick up their $8 million option for 2013. He missed the entire 2012 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery in early April.

   Suarez said he expects Soria to be ready to pitch by May, but Royals officials privately believe a June return is more likely. Soria and Royals general manager Dayton Moore previously expressed interest in negotiating a new deal.

   Such a deal, presumably, would consist of a low guarantee and significant performance bonuses due to concerns regarding Soria's ability to return to form following a second elbow reconstruction. He missed the 2003 season while recovering from a previous Tommy John surgery. 

   Even so, it's no surprise that other teams are willing to make similar offers. Soria posted 160 saves while compiling a 2.40 ERA in 298 games from 2007-11. He converted 150 of 167 saves opportunities after becoming the Royals' full-time closer on July 31, 2007.

 

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