Rangers trade reliever Joakim Soria to Tigers

Tim Brown
Yahoo Sports
Baltimore Orioles v Texas Rangers

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ARLINGTON, TX - JUNE 05: Joakim Soria #28 of the Texas Rangers pitches during the ninth inning against the Baltimore Orioles on June 5, 2014 at Globe Life Park in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)

NEW YORK – Vulnerable in the late innings, the Detroit Tigers agreed to acquire veteran reliever Joakim Soria from the Texas Rangers in exchange for two young pitchers.

After the Rangers’ rain-shortened game at Yankee Stadium, Soria smiled broadly and said, “I haven’t been told it is official yet.”

Rangers manager Ron Washington declined comment.

The agreed-upon trade would send right-handers Jake Thompson and Corey Knebel to the Rangers. Thompson, 20, is a second-round pick from 2012. He has a 3.13 ERA in 17 Class A and Double-A starts. The 22-year-old Knebel, drafted in the first round last year, has made eight relief appearances for the Tigers this season and has a 6.23 ERA.

The Tigers signed Joe Nathan this winter to a two-year, $20-million contract. Thirty-nine appearances in, he has a 5.89 ERA and has blown five of 25 save opportunities.

Soria has 17 saves in 19 opportunities, has a 2.70 ERA and 42 strikeouts to four walks. He is due the remainder of $5.5 million this season and the Tigers will hold a $7-million option for 2015.

Nathan and Soria were teammates last season in Texas. Now they’ll team up in the late innings for the Tigers, whose bullpen ERA – 4.41 – is among the worst in the American League and rises to 4.54 from the seventh inning on.

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