Former Royals closer and current Rangers reliever Joakim Soria is moving closer to joining the team and will throw an inning for Triple-A Round Rock on Friday, reports Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He is returning from Tommy John surgery and a strained mucle in his chest.
Soria, 29, has made three minor league appearances already, retiring all nine men he faced while striking out four. Two of those three appearances gave come at the Double-A level, the other way down in rookie ball.
From 2007-11, Soria pitched to a 2.40 ERA and 1.04 WHIP while saving 160 games for the Royals. He had his worst year as a big leaguer in 2011, when he posted a 4.03 ERA and 1.28 WHIP in 60 1/3 innings while missing time with hamstring problems.
The Rangers entered Friday with a 3.21 bullpen ERA, the fifth-best mark in the AL. Wilson writes that whenever Soria does come off the DL, the Rangers will ease him back into things before trusting him in close games.