Joakim Soria nears return to the Tigers’ bullpen

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Tigers reliever Joakim Soria threw a simulated game this morning and felt good enough that he could be cleared to come off the disabled list as soon as Wednesday, according to Jason Beck of MLB.com.

Soria has been out for a month with a strained oblique muscle, but threw 27 pitches today and previously avoided setbacks during multiple bullpen sessions last week. He called today “a big step” and with Tigers closer Joe Nathan sidelined by an elbow injury it’s possible that Soria could see some ninth-inning duties pretty quickly upon returning.

Soria appeared in just six games for the Tigers after they acquired him from the Rangers, for whom he had a 2.70 ERA and 42/4 K/BB ratio in 33 innings.