Is Joakim Soria back?
We were one of the first to sound the alarm when Soria struggled early so we might as well be one of the first to signal that the old Jack might be back. (D'oh! Fangraphs)
Here are Soria's numbers since blowing back to back saves and being briefly demoted a few weeks back:
11 IP, 3 Hs, 2BBs,11 Ks and 0 Runs
During that span he's allowed an opposing line of .079/.125/.079, and generated a swinging strike rate of 10%. Against the Cubs this weekend, Soria's new/old ability to get strikeouts was a breath of old/stagnant air.
Here's what Chris Cwik concluded about the classic closer at FG:
A look a Soria’s Pitch FX game logs reveals that he may be an avid FanGraphs reader. Soria appears to have scrapped his cutter since returning to the closer role — relying far more on his normal fastball. As a result, his overall fastball velocity has increased as well. This could be a result of Soria regaining his velocity as the season progresses, it could be a mechanical change, or it could be the fact that he’s throwing fewer cutters — which are sometime wrongly classified by Pitch FX.