While the deal is not official, Alfonso Soriano addressed his teammates and coaches in the clubhouse following Thursday night’s game. Soriano said his goodbyes before catching a red-eye to New York. Dale Sveum told reporters, “It was rather emotional for all of us.”
The trade is expected to be finalized and announced on Friday. All that appears to be left is finalizing the paperwork with Major League Baseball. Alfons Soriano left the Cubs so he would have time to be ready to play for the Yankees on Friday night once the deal is official.
Once the trade is announced, it is expected to be Alfonso Soriano and cash to the New York Yankees for a lower-level minor league pitcher. The Cubs and Yankees have reportedly agreed to the framework of the trade, including the pitcher the Cubs will receive in return. Major League Baseball has to approve the deal due to the amount of money that is going with Soriano to the Bronx. The Cubs could end up eating somewhere between $17 and $20 million of the nearly $25 million left on Soriano’s contract, while some reports have the Cubs sending half of the $25 million with him to New York. The other holdup is the paperwork required in order for Soriano to officially waive his 10-and-5 rights.
Reports have suggested the Cubs could receive RHP Corey Black in the deal, but nothing is official and Black said he has not received a call that he has been traded. Baseball America ranked Black as the 25th best prospect in the Yankees system prior to the season. The Yankees selected Black in the fourth round of the 2012 draft. Black started his college career at San Diego State and is from San Diego. Black can bring the heat (94-98 mph sinking fastball, mid-80s slider) and is 3-8 in 19 starts in High-A this season with a 4.25 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP.
Once Soriano is traded, Jeff Samardzija becomes the longest tenured player on the Cubs’ roster with Starlin Castro having the most time with the team than any other position player.
When Alfonso Soriano was asked what he would remember most about being a Cub, Soriano said, “The fans.”
Once the deal with the Yankees is official, the Cubs are expected to turn their attention to trading other players on the roster. Theo Epstein said they are receiving a lot of calls right now. Kevin Gregg is expected to be dealt but after Gregg, the players the Cubs are willing to move becomes unclear.
Multiple reports have suggested the Cubs would like to keep both David DeJesus and Nate Schierholtz, while other reports have stated the Cubs are likely to keep both veteran outfielders that would provide veteran leadership in the clubhouse next season.
There are reports that the Cubs have received calls on Dioner Navarro as well.
The Cubs’ lone lefty reliever is garnering a lot of attention. According to Bruce Levine, the Orioles, Braves and Diamondbacks are among the teams that are interested in James Russell.
News and Notes
Brian Bogusevic is on the DL with a strained left hamstring and could return by early August. Bogusevic is expected to see time in left field when he is able to be activated from the disabled list.
The Cubs may fill Alfonso Soriano’s spot on the active roster with a relief pitcher.
Josh Vitters left Thursday night’s game after suffering an injury to his hamstring. Vitters told I-Cub manager, Marty Pevey that he could out for 1-2 weeks.