Jorge Soler

Jorge Carlos Soler Castillo (born February 25, 1992) is a Cuban professional baseball outfielder for the Miami Marlins of Major League Baseball (MLB). Soler has previously played in MLB for the Chicago Cubs, Kansas City Royals, and Atlanta Braves.

Jorge Soler
Soler with the Chicago Cubs in 2014
Miami Marlins – No. 12
Born: (1992-02-25) February 25, 1992
Havana, Cuba
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
MLB debut
August 27, 2014, for the Chicago Cubs
MLB statistics
(through 2022 season)
Batting average.241
Home runs134
Runs batted in377
Career highlights and awards
Men's baseball
Representing  Cuba
18U Baseball World Cup
2010 Thunder Bay Team

Soler played for the Cuban national baseball team in international competition. He defected from Cuba in 2011, seeking a career in MLB. After establishing residency in Haiti, Soler signed a nine-year contract with the Cubs. He made his MLB debut in 2014 and won the 2016 World Series with the Cubs. The Cubs traded Soler to the Royals after the 2016 season. He led the American League in home runs in 2019. Traded to Atlanta in 2021, Soler won the 2021 World Series and earned the World Series Most Valuable Player Award. Soler signed with the Marlins before the 2022 season.

Cuban career

Soler played for the Cuban national baseball team in the 2010 World Junior Baseball Championship, where he had a .304 batting average, .500 on-base percentage, and .522 slugging percentage. His nine walks were the second most in the tournament.[1] Cuba won the bronze medal. Soler also played briefly with the Industriales in the Cuban National Series.

Soler defected from Cuba in 2011 to pursue his career in Major League Baseball (MLB). He established residency in Haiti.[2] Soler was unblocked by the Office of Foreign Assets Control on June 2, 2012, making him an MLB free agent. As a free agent, many teams were involved in bidding on Soler.[3]

Scouting profile

Soler is 6 feet 4 inches (1.93 m) tall and weighs 215 pounds (98 kg). He was described as a power-hitting outfielder who would likely play right field. Jim Callis of Baseball America described Soler in 2011 as "a 19-year-old athlete with five-tool potential."[4] According to Callis, Soler likely would have been a top-five pick in the 2010 draft had he been eligible. Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus did not rank Soler in his list of the top baseball prospects prior to the 2012 season, but said he would have ranked Soler as the 38th or 39th best prospect if he were eligible.[5] Some teams preferred Soler to higher profile Cuban defector Yoenis Céspedes.[6] Keith Law of indicated that Soler had the talent of a top-five draft choice in the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft, had he been eligible to be drafted.[7] Writing for Fox News, Mauricio Rubio wrote that "Early in his career he was benched for not hustling, and in a separate incident he ran toward an opposing dugout with a bat."[8] Writing for the Sporting News, Jeff Mans noted that: "The biggest issue with Soler aside from the hamstring injuries is his temper.... He started out on the wrong foot with the Cubs after failing to report to minor league camp shortly after signing his nine-year, $30 million deal, feeling that he should have been in Chicago immediately. The other scare for the Cubs brass was his relative inability to hit righthanded pitching."[9]

According to Statcast, Soler's average launch speed was 91.39 miles per hour (147.08 km/h) in 2016.[10]

American career

Minor League Baseball

On June 11, 2012, Soler reportedly agreed to a nine-year $30 million contract with the Chicago Cubs.[11] The Cubs had reportedly agreed to a deal with Soler before he was declared a free agent, though Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer denied this.[12] He made his professional debut that same season with the AZL Cubs and was promoted to the Peoria Chiefs in August. In 34 games between the two teams he batted .299 with five home runs and 25 RBIs.

On April 10, 2013, while playing on the Daytona Cubs, immediately following a bench-clearing incident, Soler charged the opposing Clearwater Threshers' dugout while brandishing a baseball bat.[13][14] He was ejected from the game, was fined, and received a five-game suspension.[14] Soler spent all of 2013 with Daytona, slashing .281/.343/.467 with eight home runs and 35 RBIs in 55 games.

Soler batting for the Iowa Cubs in 2014

Soler began the 2014 season with the Tennessee Smokies. On July 22, 2014, after batting .415/.494/.862 with six home runs and 22 RBIS in 22 games, Soler was promoted to the Iowa Cubs.[15]

Chicago Cubs

On August 25, 2014, Soler was called up to the Chicago Cubs for the first time. In 32 games for Iowa prior to his call up he was batting .282 with eight home runs and 29 RBIs in 32 games. In his major league debut on August 27, facing Cincinnati Reds pitcher Mat Latos, Soler hit a home run in his first major league at-bat,[16] becoming the 117th player in MLB history to do so.[17] On September 1 Soler had two doubles in his home debut for the Cubs to become just the third major league player in the last 100 years to have at least one extra-base hit in each of his first five games in the majors.[18] Two days later Soler became the second player in Cubs history with as many as 10 RBIs in his first seven games as a major leaguer. Soler was the starting right fielder for the Cubs 2015 season until an ankle injury sidelined him in early June. He returned to the starting lineup on July 5 after spending time in rehab.[19] He finished the regular season with a .268 batting average, 15 home runs and 67 RBIs.

In 2015, Soler's postseason debut, he walked as a pinch-hitter in the ninth inning in Game 1 of the Division Series and followed up with a double, two-run home run to straightaway center and two more walks in Game 2, and another home run, a single and two walks in Game 3. Record setting Soler [20] started his postseason career by reaching base nine times in a row, in which he recorded five walks and hit two home runs, a double and a single. In Game 4 Soler ended a game-tying St. Louis Cardinals sixth inning rally with an outfield assist on a game-saving inning-ending put out of Tony Cruz at home plate.[21] The Cubs won the game 6–4 and beat the rival St. Louis Cardinals in four games to advance to the National League Championship Series.

Soler's playing time with Chicago dipped in 2016, playing in 86 games compared to 101 the previous year. The Cubs were the most dominant team for the entirety of the regular season, entering the postseason as the favorites. Through 13 at-bats in the playoffs, Soler totaled 4 strikeouts, 3 walks, and two hits. Both of his hits came in the World Series. The more notable of the two was a triple in Game 3 off of Bryan Shaw. The Cubs went on to win the 2016 World Series over the Cleveland Indians in seven games.[22]

Kansas City Royals

On December 7, 2016, the Cubs traded Soler to the Kansas City Royals for Wade Davis.[23] After a string of injuries and inconsistency at the plate, Soler was demoted to the Omaha Storm Chasers on June 2. In 74 games for Omaha he batted .267 with 24 home runs and 59 RBIs, and in 35 games for Kansas City, he compiled a .144 batting average with two home runs and six RBIs.[24]

Soler in 2018

Soler began the 2018 season as Kansas City's starting right fielder. However, after suffering a toe fracture in mid-June, he was sidelined for the remainder of the year. Over 61 games, he hit .265 with nine home runs.[25][26] Soler returned from the injury in 2019, splitting time between right field and designated hitter. On September 3, 2019, he hit his 39th home run of the season, becoming Kansas City's record holder for most home runs in a single season.[27] The very next night, Soler became the first Royals player in history to record at least 40 home runs in a single season.[28]

In 2019, he batted .265, and led the American League with 48 home runs and 178 strikeouts in 589 at bats.[29] His home run total was the most ever in a single season by a Cuban-born player.[30]

In the 2020 pandemic-shortened season, Soler batted .228 with eight home runs and 24 RBIs in 43 games.[31] At the beginning of the 2021 season with Kansas City, he batted .192/.288/.370 in 308 at bats.[32]

Atlanta Braves

On July 30, 2021, Soler was traded to the Atlanta Braves for Kasey Kalich.[33]

In 2021, he batted .223/.316/.432 with 27 home runs and 70 RBIs in 516 at bats between the Royals and the Braves. With the Braves, he hit .269/.358/.524.[32] His home runs averaged 423 feet, the longest average home run distance of all major league hitters.[34]

In his first start after spending 10 days on the COVID-19 injured list, Soler hit a leadoff home run in Game 1 of the 2021 World Series off of Framber Valdez, becoming the first player to hit a home run in the first plate appearance of a World Series.[35] In Game 4, Soler hit a pinch-hit go-ahead home run in the seventh inning to give the Braves a 3–2 lead, which led them to a 3–1 lead in the World Series.[36] In Game 6, he hit his third home run of the series, a 446-foot, three run shot to give the Braves a 3–0 lead.[37]

Miami Marlins

On March 22, 2022, Soler signed a three-year contract with the Miami Marlins.[38]

Personal life

Soler married Leydis Serrano in the early 2000s.[39]

See also


  1. Arguello, John (January 30, 2012). "Cubs are heavily scouting Cuban players | Cubs Den". Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  2. Jones, Matt (November 28, 2011). "Chicago Cubs sign Cuban prospect Jorge Soler". USA Today. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  3. Sanchez, Jesse (June 11, 2012). "Cubs agree to deal with Cuban prospect Jorge Soler | News". Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  4. Callis, Jim (December 12, 2011). "Prospects: Ask BA". Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  5. Goldstein, Kevin (February 13, 2012). "Future Shock: Top 101 Prospects". Baseball Prospectus. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  6. Cafardo, Nick (January 4, 2012). "Sox may prefer Soler to Cespedes – Extra Bases – Red Sox blog". Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  7. "Jorge Soler has the talent of a top-five pick in the MLB draft – ESPN". Retrieved June 12, 2012. (subscription required)
  8. "The Jorge Soler scouting report". FOX Sports. August 28, 2014. Archived from the original on February 23, 2019.
  9. " Prospect Report: Jorge Soler, Cubs". Sporting News.
  10. "Jorge Soler Stats, Fantasy & News |". Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  11. "Report: Cubs get Cuban outfield prospect Jorge Soler – Chicago Sun-Times". Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  12. "Blog | Baseball America Prospects Blog | Cubs Sign Jorge Soler". Baseball America. Retrieved June 12, 2012.
  13. "MiLB Ejection: Sean Ryan (of Bat-Wielding Cub Jorge Soler)." Close Call Sports/Umpire Ejection Fantasy League. April 10, 2013.
  14. Rogers, Jesse; Levine, Bruce (April 11, 2013). "Cubs' Soler out 5 games for 'charging with bat'". Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  15. Mooney, Patrick (July 22, 2014). "Cubs promoting Jorge Soler and Albert Almora". CSN Chicago. Archived from the original on July 28, 2014.
  16. Muskat, Carrie (August 28, 2014). "First homer, no waiting: Soler arrives with a bang". MLB. Retrieved August 28, 2014.
  17. "Jorge Soler and other baseball players who homered in the first at AB". Line Up Forms. Retrieved August 30, 2014.
  18. Jackson, John. "Castillo and Valbuena hit HRs, rookie Soler has 2 doubles to lead Cubs in 4–2 win". Associated Press. Archived from the original on September 1, 2014. Retrieved September 1, 2014.
  19. Mitchell, Fred (July 5, 2015). "Cubs game day: Lead Marlins 1-0". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved July 5, 2015.
  20. Kernan, Kevin (October 12, 2015). "107 years later, these young, powerful Cubs are due". New YorkPost. Retrieved October 13, 2015.
  21. Hayes, Dan (October 14, 2015). "Jorge Soler's perfect throw home saves day for Cubs". CSN Chicago. Retrieved October 14, 2015.
  22. Meagher, Sean (November 3, 2016). "World Series 2016 recap: Chicago Cubs finally win it all". OregonLive. Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  23. "Wade Davis: Cubs agree to trade Jorge Soler for Royals RP". December 6, 2016. Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  24. "Jorge Soler Stats, Highlights, Bio - Stats - The Official Site of Minor League Baseball". Retrieved May 21, 2018.
  25. Calcaterra, Craig (September 2, 2018). "Jorge Soler unlikely to return in 2018 – HardballTalk". Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  26. "Royals' Soler breaks foot, out at least 6 weeks". Associated Press. June 16, 2018. Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  27. Flanagan, Jeffrey (September 4, 2019). "Jorge Soler sets Royals home run record". Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  28. "Jorge Soler hits 40th HR of season in Royals win over Tigers". WXYZ. Associated Press. September 5, 2019. Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  29. "2019 American League Batting Leaders". January 1, 1970. Retrieved October 7, 2019.
  30. Kappel, Nick (October 31, 2019). "The Great 48: Soler Power". Medium. Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  31. "Jorge Soler 2020 Batting Game Logs". Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  32. "Jorge Soler Stats".
  33. "Braves acquire slugger Soler from Royals". July 30, 2021. Retrieved August 7, 2021.
  34. "Statcast Leaderboard".
  35. "Soler hits first true World Series leadoff HR". October 26, 2021. Retrieved October 27, 2021.
  36. Gonzalez, Alden (October 30, 2021). "Jorge Soler's pinch-hit homer puts Atlanta Braves on cusp of World Series title". Retrieved October 31, 2021.
  37. McCalvy, Adam (November 2, 2021). "Soler clears train tracks for massive 3-run HR". Retrieved November 3, 2021.
  38. "Soler shares Marlins were his 'top choice' team".
  39. Ndlovu, Romeo (June 27, 2022). "Truth About Leydis Serrano, Jorge Soler's Wife". BuzzSA. Retrieved January 26, 2023.
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