That Alfonso Soriano, everybody. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Hilderbrand-US PRESSWIRE
The Chicago Cubs have been trying to trade Alfonso Soriano for about 25 years now. Finally, after all these years, it appears there’s a chance it could happen this week at the Winter Meetings.
And according to Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Philadelphia Phillies are seen as a potential landing spot.
That thing you smell is desperation, by the way.
Back in 2006 the Phillies attempted to sign Soriano as a free agent. That was back when he was 31 years old and was coming off a season in which he hit 46 HRs and stole 41 bases in the same season.
But the Cubs won the bidding, and signed him to an eight-year, $136 million deal.
It was the best signing the Phillies never made.
Soriano is now coming off a season of revival, hitting .262/.322/.499 for an OPS of .821 and an OPS+ of 121, with 32 HRs, 108 RBIs and 33 2Bs. He also played in 151 games, the most he’s played in since ’06.
The Cubs know there will never be a better opportunity to sell (I mean, pawn off) Soriano to another team.
Still, Soriano will be 37 next year and will be owed $18 million in 2013 and 2014. That’s two more years at $36 million total for a player who will be 38 at the end of his contract.
Um, yeah. So, there’s that.
Listen, we all know the Phils are desperate for right-handed power. The best right-handed power bat on the Phillies right now is Jimmy Rollins, and that’s just sad. So a right-handed bat with some pop is a darn good target for Amaro to pursue.
But Soriano is so horrifically bad in the outfield, and is such a detriment on the bases as well, he was only a 1.8 WAR player last year, despite his power numbers.
The only way a deal for Soriano makes sense for the Phillies, or ANY team, is if Chicago eats at least 80% of Alfonso’s salary and don’t require the Phils to give up any of their top prospects.
In other words, this deal would have to be so Phillie-friendly there’s no way Ruben could say no.
Of course, that’s not likely to happen. And as such, the reaction to the speculation of Soriano to the Phils has been about as expected.
Yep, that about sums it up.
The Phillies desperately need power from the right-hand side of the plate.
That doesn’t mean they should act desperate, though.