- Bats Right, Throws Right
Joakim Claesson is the son of Robert Claesson and Yvonne Claesson and is the brother of Jakob Claesson and Thomas Claesson. In 2003-2004, he pitched for Fort Scott Community College in the USA. He hit .250/.340/.340 in 2005 for the Skövde club in the Elitserien and was 2-3 with a 4.33 ERA.
In the 2005 Baseball World Cup, Claesson worked 6 2/3 innings with a 4.05 ERA. Only Magnus Pilegård, primarily a position player, had a lower ERA for the Swedish club. In 2006, Joakim went 4-5 with a 4.74 ERA for Stockholm; he fanned 63 in 74 innings to finish 5th in the Elitserien in Ks.
For the 2007 Stockholm club, Claesson went 2-1 with a 1.88 ERA and 43 strikeouts in 38 1/3 IP. He was 0-4 with a 6.65 ERA that year for Peru State College. In '08, he had a 0-3, 5.12 record for Peru State.
Joakim was arguably Sweden's top hurler in 2008, going 9-1 with a 2.01 ERA for Stockholm. He allowed a .213 average and whiffed 86 batters in 89 2/3 IP. He led the Elitserien in ERA, was second in opponent average, was second to Mattias Stenis in strikeouts and tied Stenis for second in wins, one behind Kent Karlsson.
Remaining sharp in 2009, Joakim was 8-3 with a 2.33 ERA and .203 opponent average. He struck out 94 in 89 innings. He was second in the league in ERA, tied for second in wins, was second in opponent average and second in strikeouts.
He was 0-1 with a 8.59 ERA in the 2009 Baseball World Cup. He got the start for Sweden in its closest game, a 10-8 loss to the Netherlands Antilles national team. He gave up 4 runs in 6 2/3 IP to leave with a 2-run deficit against Simon Pantophlet but Nicklas Melin provided little relief. Against Team Canada, he was roughed up in relief, giving up 3 runs in under an inning with a Tim Smith homer being the big blow.
Claesson signed with the HSV Stealers for the first month of the season, as Germany's campaign began a month before Sweden's. He had an amazing Bundesliga debut with one hit and no runs in eight innings to beat the Dortmund Wanderers on Opening Day.