Royals closer Joakim Soria is under contract through 2014 at a rather affordable rate and the Royals haven’t so much as hinted at a desire to move him, but that doesn’t mean we won’t be hearing his name involved in trade rumors over the next few weeks. Crazy season is officially upon us.
With so many teams in contention here in mid-July and all of those teams seeking a reliable reliever, it’s possible that the Royals will get an offer they like.
So, just in case, Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports brings us the six teams on Soria’s no-trade list: Red Sox, Yankees, Phillies, Dodgers, Rockies and Braves.
The Yanks would certainly have interest if Soria were to be made available. So would any of the teams on the list, even the Dodgers. Which is why it’s important to note that Soria also has the power to accept any deal and override that no-trade clause. The 27-year-old boasts a sparkling 2.27 career ERA and 1.02 career WHIP.
The Giants announced on Tuesday the hiring of Gabe Kapler as manager. Kapler, filling the extremely large shoes of future Hall of Famer Bruce Bochy, inked a three-year deal, Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area reports. Kapler was one of three finalists for the job, beating out Astros bench coach Joe Espada and Rays bench coach Matt Quataro.
Following his 12-year playing career, Kapler was a coach for Israel’s team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic qualifier. He then became an analyst for FS1 before joining the Dodgers’ front office as the director of player development in November 2014. He was involved in three scandals there: one in which he tried to handle a sexual assault incident involving two Dodgers minor league players without telling police, one in which he allegedly discriminated against Nick Francona, a veteran and former baseball operations employee, and an incident that implicated most of the Dodgers’ front office concerning the recruiting of international free agents. The Dodgers reportedly kept a spreadsheet of employees and their level of criminality.
Despite Kapler’s background, the Phillies hired him as their manager ahead of the 2018 season. He would lead the Phillies to an 80-82 record that year and then helped them improve by one game in 2019, finishing at exactly .500 before being fired. Kapler’s tenure in Philly was tumultuous, often drawing ire from the local media and subsequently the fan base for not being tough enough on his players. The Phillies also reportedly had a clubhouse issue in 2018 in which players were playing video games in the clubhouse during games, prompting Carlos Santana to smash a TV with a bat.
Kapler has a history with Farhan Zaidi, the Giants’ president of baseball operations. They worked together in the Dodgers’ front office as Zaidi served as GM from November 2014-18.