Joakim Soria has thrown five scoreless innings while rehabbing in the minors and Master Tesfatsion of MLB.com reports that the once-dominant reliever “could join the Rangers next week.”
Soria is coming back from Tommy John elbow surgery last spring and has a 7/1 K/BB ratio while allowing just one hit in five appearances.
He’d likely be eased into a setup role in front of closer Joe Nathan and if healthy could make a huge impact in the second half. Prior to the elbow injury that knocked him out for all of last season Soria had a 2.40 ERA and 9.7 strikeouts per nine innings for the Royals from 2007-2011.
Update (6:48 PM EST): Topkin reports the contract will be of the major league variety.
Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays and free agent reliever Shawn Tolleson are close to finalizing a contract.
Tolleson, who turns 29 years old on Thursday, had an ugly 2016 season, finishing with a 7.68 ERA and a 29/10 K/BB ratio in 36 1/3 innings. He was one of the Rangers’ best relievers in the two seasons prior to that, however, which included saving 35 games in 2015.
The big presidential pardon news today concerns the commutation of Chelsea Manning’s sentence. We’ll leave that aside. For our purposes, know that someone in the world of baseball was pardoned: Willie McCovey.
Yes, Hall of Famer Willie McCovey, who in 1995 pleaded guilty to income tax fraud related to the non-reporting of income received from memorabilia and autograph shows. Duke Snider pleaded guilty alongside McCovey. They were given two years probation and fines of $5,000. Snider died in 2011. McCovey still works with the San Francisco Giants as a senior advisor and goodwill ambassador.
President Obama’s release of McCovey’s pardon was pretty succinct. But it’s enough to scrub the record of one of the greatest sluggers of all time.