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Cubs willing to eat millions to move Alfonso Soriano

Jul 22, 2011, 11:19 AM EDT

Alfonso Soriano

Alfonso Soriano said earlier this week that he wouldn’t use his no-trade rights to block a move from Chicago, but as I wrote yesterday that won’t lead to a deal unless the Cubs are willing to eat a significant portion of the $18 million he’s owed in each of the next three seasons.

And sure enough Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago now reports that the Cubs “would be willing to absorb a high percentage” of Soriano’s contract “if the right trade offer came along.”

What that means exactly is unclear, but considering Soriano might struggle to get even half of what he’s owed if he hit the open market as a free agent right now, at age 35, the Cubs may have to eat upwards of $30 million to get anything decent in return.

Soriano is hitting just .249 with a ghastly .291 on-base percentage and mediocre .736 OPS in 82 games this season. He still has plenty of power with 14 homers and 13 doubles in 281 at-bats, but is no longer a threat on the bases, has never been an asset defensively, and is sporting a hideous 74/16 K/BB ratio.

If the Blue Jays can unload Vernon Wells‘ contract then I suppose anything is possible, but moving Soriano won’t be easy for the Cubs even if they’re willing to pay to make him disappear.

  1. Chris Fiorentino - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    I thought about it for a second as a Phillies fan, whether I would take Soriano as a right-handed bat. However, he is a such a mutt, even if the Cubs paid him $45 of the $54 million he is owed, I still wouldn’t take the guy. He’s just horrible.

  2. Mr. Jason "El Bravo" Heyward - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:35 AM

    Do it Cubs! Do it! Eat it b/c you’ve been eating it for years now anyway.

  3. nick5253 - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:51 AM

    If the Cubs can get an actual prospect back, they should pay ALL of his contract. It’s a sunk cost, they’ll be paying that absurd contract if they can’t trade him. AND he’ll be blocking the development of guys like Colvin and Jackson who could easily provide the same value for the league minimum. I could actually see the Cubs just cutting him next year anyway, so why not try and get SOMETHING for him, even if it means paying him is full salary to play elsewhere.

    • nick5253 - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:54 AM

      Question to Phillies fan (or any other team’s fans):

      Would you rather have Soriano for 9 mil per year (half his contract) and trade away nothing OR

      Would you rather have Soriano for free and trade away a top 20 prospect?

      • 78mu - Jul 22, 2011 at 2:57 PM

        If I were the Phillies I would keep all prospects and hope the Mets or Braves sign Soriano at any price.

      • drunkenhooliganism - Jul 22, 2011 at 4:39 PM

        As much as the name intrigues me, the .291 OBP and abysmal defense makes him not worthy of getting a meaningful at bat in the majors, so I wouldn’t take him if the entire salary was paid and had to offer nothing in return.

        Ok…before hitting send I checked his splits against lefties. He’s more than serviceable both historically and recently against lefties. So, he’s not worthless.

  4. willcoop - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:54 AM

    He should give some of it back for playing like a dog. And just think, they actually destroyed Colvin for this piece of horse dung!

    • Alex K - Jul 22, 2011 at 12:48 PM

      He should give money back right after you give some of your salary back.

      I said it the other day, I’ll say it again….It’s so easy to spend other people’s money!!

      • mcfaj0dm - Jul 22, 2011 at 2:02 PM

        That would make a certain amount of sense except most of us are “at will” employees and are actually expected to PRODUCE to earn our salaries and continue employment.

        But it leads to the real issue….. that as a Cubs fan I don’t care for them to do a thing til they first and foremost DUMP HENDRY! He’s the cause of this fiasco and if left to deal with this he’ll almost certainly screw the Cubs even worse. Not sure how that’s possible, but I’m sure he does….

      • Alex K - Jul 22, 2011 at 11:43 PM

        The terms of the employment don’t matter. It’s his salary and no one reading this blog has any right to tell him what he should do with it. If they say someone should give it back or donate it they should be willing to do the same thing.

        The Cubs could “fire” him, the severance would be the amount of the deal that is left.

  5. girardisbraces - Jul 22, 2011 at 2:23 PM

    I gotta tell you, when Soriano got traded in the A-Rod deal, I was none too pleased. Looking back at it years later, I think “Alfonso WHO?” :)

    Robbie Cano is sooooo much better than Sori ever was. The Cubs would do well to trade that no-talent hack….

  6. kingbuccaneer - Jul 22, 2011 at 2:42 PM

    How does Jim Hendry still have a job???

    I know he’s not giving these turds all this money out of his own pocket but how many bad contracts can he possibly hand out?

  7. willcoop - Jul 23, 2011 at 10:14 AM

    Alex, how much is Sori paying you? We are paying him and there is no return on the investment. See what we are getting at here. Most of us simple working class stiffs are expected to produce for our meager salaries, why should it be any different for him? At some point kissing his ass and saying it’s ok to do with his money as he wishes. On the other hand as a paying customer, that makes me a small investor and I choose to say he should give some back because he stinks and is not doing anything to improve the club!

    • Alex K - Jul 23, 2011 at 12:04 PM

      He’s paying me nothing. What money is he making you spend? It’s just stupid to say “so and so should give back his salary”. He signed a legal contract that both parties agreed on, it’s the Cubs mistake, not his. But you think since the Cubs made a mistake Soriano should give up money? That’s stupid.

      The “I have to produce for my salary” thing is bogus as well. Your employment terms and his employment terms have nothing to do with one another. I’m assuming your an “at will” employee…he’s not. He works on a contract and is legally owed the amount of that contract. What if I came to watch you do your job and thought you stunk at it….should I say “Willcoop should give back his salary”? No, I shouldn’t.

      If you are so upset about the Cubs using your money to pay people you don’t think are worth it…then stop going, stop watching on T.V., and stop buying Cubs gear. That will get the point across better than making stupid statements like “Soriano should give salary back”.

      • mcfaj0dm - Jul 25, 2011 at 12:12 PM

        Wow –

        Soriano actually GIVING the money back would be the stupid thing in this argument. My or anyone else saying he’s playing like a dog for the past 3-4 years and suggesting he hasn’t earned his money, and having the opinion he’s so bad he should give it back – is nothing more than an opinion. Pretty much protected by freedom of speech.

        But just to satisfy you – I’ll say right now that I will give my salary back when I start being as much of a pathetic producer in my profession and employer as Soriano has been to the Cubs. So far my reviews… lets’ call the “stats”, don’t suggest I have been.

      • Alex K - Jul 25, 2011 at 4:54 PM

        I know it’s an opinion….it just so happens it a stupid opinion, that’s all.

    • Alex K - Jul 23, 2011 at 12:07 PM

      Also, they didn’t destroy Tyler Colvin…he’s just not a great baseball player.

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