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Yankees close to acquiring Alfonso Soriano from Cubs

Jul 25, 2013, 7:50 PM EDT

Alfonso Soriano Getty Getty Images

Alfonso Soriano‘s return to the Bronx has been rumored for the past couple of days, but a deal is almost official.

According to Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune, Cubs manager Dale Sveum said that Soriano has been scratched from tonight’s lineup against the Diamondbacks because a trade with the Yankees is close. In fact, Sveum told Sullivan that a deal is “99 percent done.”

The specifics of the deal aren’t yet known, but Bob Nightengale of USA Today says a pitching prospect with go to Chicago. Soriano still has around $25 million left on his contract through next season, so the Cubs figure to pay a big chunk of it. Similar to the Vernon Wells trade, the Yankees will likely try to arrange it so that whatever portion they cover will not count toward their payroll for next season. Soriano’s contract includes a full no-trade clause, but it was never expected to be an obstacle here.

Soriano, who played his first five seasons in the majors as a member of the Yankees, is batting .254/.287/.467 with 17 home runs and 51 RBI through 93 games this season. The Yankees have been desperate for any sort of production from the right side of the plate, so Soriano should help on that end. The 37-year-old has an .806 OPS against southpaws this season. He’ll likely play left field for now and figures to shift to DH when Curtis Granderson comes off the DL.

UPDATE: CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman writes that the deal isn’t likely to be finalized tonight, as it still needs approval from the commissioner’s office. He adds that the Cubs are expected to pay more than half of the $25 million left on Soriano’s contract.

  1. jayscarpa - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:02 PM

    He’s a fun guy – I hope he does well.

  2. proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:04 PM

    99% done?

    • number42is1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:25 PM

      Arod is the other 1%….. probably

    • proudlycanadian - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:53 PM

      I stand corrected. According to MLB.com the trade is only “close to 99% done”.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:37 PM

        and the jays are 100% done, stick a fork in them!

  3. GoneYickitty - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    Wow, I didn’t realize how bad his numbers are now that he’s old and a shell of his former self. He would be a great fit for the Yankees.

  4. rbj1 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Are Hughes & Joba part of the deal? Because that would help the Yankees too. We’ve got better options in Nova & Phelps and Pineda is coming along.

    • anxovies - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:20 PM

      Joba yes, but Phil looks like he has turned it around.

    • jwbiii - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:31 PM

      No, the Cubs want prospects.

      But don’t worry, they’ll both be gone in the off season. Unless you think the Yankees will make them (what is it?) $13.6M offers.

      • Kevin S. - Jul 26, 2013 at 6:01 AM

        I think it’s safe to make Hughes the offer. His floor in FA is, what, a one year, $8 million pillow contract? No pitcher is more hurt by his current home ballpark, and Hughes agent has to know he’s better off leaving a little money on the table to go into the following offseason coming off much better numbers.

  5. yanks33 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    Besides the BA i’d say 17 Hr’s and 51rbi’s isnt too bad

    • 18thstreet - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:31 PM

      He’s not a bad player, and I really think he always tries. Likeable personality. Stays healthy, right?

      I understand the Yankees need a RHH, but it’s impossible to believe there’s not a better option out there. Plus, they’re stuck with him for next year, too. I don’t mean the money, which is substantial, even for the Yankees. I mean for the OF/DH spots moving forward.

      Next year, Wells and Soriano are still under contract — why have both? (Honestly, shouldn’t the Yankees have gone after Soriano in the first place? Isn’t he much better than Wells?) Ichiro is being paid a lot as a LHH. Gardiner is in center. Can they pursue Choo or Ellsbury without cutting Wells or Ichiro? And what does THAT do to their payroll goals?

  6. rockthered1286 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:28 PM

    4th place in a very tough division making a move for a marginal player. Seems sort of pointless to me.

    • thebadguyswon - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:46 PM

      They did need a veteran presence though.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:21 PM

      At this point, “average” would be a big upgrade in comparison to their other right-handed bats. The question is, who do they cut loose to make room? I suppose it depends on whether the player(s) going to the Cubs are on the 40-man and/or 25-man rosters. Has Neal even played for the Yankees since his call-up? Do they just dump Hafner and move on?

      • cubfan531 - Jul 26, 2013 at 3:43 AM

        Odds are, the Cubs aren’t getting anyone off of New York’s 40 man roster. It’s probably an A-ball pitcher. The general feeling I’ve got is that once Granderson’s off the DL, Hafner’s gone.

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 26, 2013 at 10:34 AM

        I will admit that I was a big fan of the Hafner signing. But at this point I just want to grab him by the shoulders and yell, “You have one job…ONE JOB!….”

      • cubfan531 - Jul 26, 2013 at 2:39 PM

        Dude’s hitting under .200 since the start of May. Always liked Hafner, thought it was a potentially brilliant move by Cashman to bring him in as the DH. Alas, it looks like his career might be done.

  7. doublezero74 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Yawn

  8. thebadguyswon - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Why would the Cubs want those clowns? Its going to be a prospect, and in all liklihood, Theo will fleece Cashman unless the Yankees are paying all the freight.

    • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:21 PM

      Hoyer

  9. kjericho43 - Jul 25, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    The Yankees are boring and suck. Now they suck more. Nice trade. Of course, now they’ll end up winning the division somehow. Yawn is right, dude.

  10. jcmeyer10 - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:17 PM

    Going for the Vernon Wells affect. 1 good month then he comes back down to earth.

  11. j0esixpack - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    With this being the Yankees they’ll probably sign him to a 10 year $275 million extension.

  12. boyofzimmer - Jul 25, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    Does this trade officially mark the end to the steroid era?

  13. golfrangeman - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    This guys 37 ? Wow where have I been for the last 10 years? I need to check my birth certificate

  14. 13arod - Jul 25, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    rbj1 can u read they said they were trading a pitching prospect for him

  15. pisano - Jul 25, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    Soriano meets the Yankee requirements, strikes out a lot, 35+, and has a huge contract.

  16. johnnysoup1 - Jul 26, 2013 at 7:51 AM

    At least hes not hoping around anymore..

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