The news has been pretty much all Alfonso Soriano today. The deal is now official, having been announced by both the Yankees and the Cubs. The Cubs receive RHP Corey Black and will pay all but $6.8M of Soriano's salary. Soriano will be missed by many and we've got a few good stories out on him today...
- Felzzy gives his farewell in his own unique way in this piece here.
- I wrote one late, late last night as it was learned that Soriano had said goodbye to all his teammates and hopped on a red-eye flight to NY.
- Patrick Mooney of CSN Chicago wrote on last night's trade and the team's reaction here.
- Jon Greenberg of ESPN Chicago writes a great piece on the professionalism of Alfonso Soriano.
- Sadahev Sharma wrote his personal take on Alfonso Soriano for Bleacher Nation.
- In a related piece, I wrote about Soriano's possible replacement, Junior Lake. Lake has been a difficult player for scouts to evaluate because of his freakish athleticism but ultra raw approach. As such, he's drawn a wide variety of opinions -- but so far he's proven the naysayers wrong.
Other News and Notes
- Per Carrie Muskat via Twitter, #Cubs will add RHP Eduardo Sanchez today to roster. It's difficult to say how long this move will last since it gives the Cubs a 13 man staff at the moment. It's possible that they are waiting for Dave Sappelt to be eligible again for recall.
- The Cubs have traded AAA SP Guillermo Moscoso. The RHP had a solid season and was picked up for AAA depth, but has fallen back on the depth chart with the recent acquisitions of Justin Grimm, Jake Arrieta, and the emergence of Chris Rusin as the top depth option. The Cubs will receive a PTBNL or cash. I don't think it means anything for Alberto Cabrera, who has already had a 40 innings jump from last year or Kyle Hendricks, who still has another year before he needs to be added to the roster.
- Esmalin Caridad, who pitched for the Cubs in 2009 and 2010 and most recently for the Iowa Cubs this season has signed with the Samsung Lions of the KBO. I think this is a great move for him. He can earn himself a little bit of money and perhaps recapture the interest of MLB teams with a solid performance. Good luck to him.
- It's kind of nice to take a break from the rumors for today but for those who can't get enough, Theo Epstein said he's happy with the talent they've added to the organization, now they have to develop it. But they still may not be done. I expect Kevin Gregg and Nate Schierholtz to garner a lot of attention in the last week, with Gregg being the most likely to move on. Dioner Navarro could also interest some teams, as could David DeJesus. James Russell is a solid, cost-controlled LH reliever and Bruce Levine reports that there are at least 5 teams interested, including the Braves, Orioles, and Diamondbacks, but the feeling I get is that teams will be hesitant to give up a whole lot for him. Cost-control likely doesn't add as much value to relievers because of the volatile nature of the role. Just thinking aloud but it makes sense to me that teams are probably more content when it comes to a relief rental than at any other position. For what it's worth, I don't think the Cubs are shopping Schierholtz, DeJesus, and Russell but I think GMs have inquired anyway. Schierholtz is the most likely to go from that group, in my opinion, but the Cubs don't have to trade Schierholtz and probably won't unless somebody makes it worth their while.
- Epstein calls RHP Corey Black a shorter pitcher with a big arm and comps him to White Sox reliever Jesse Crain.
- He also said that the Cubs wanted to jump the market and make trades before other pitchers began to flood the market. That is in essence, exactly what's happening. Jake Peavy, Bud Norris, and Ervin Santana are currently thought to be available. There's also a possibility that the Phillies will put LHP Cliff Lee on the market, but they don't seem to want to sell at this point.
- DeJesus CF
- Lake LF
- Rizzo 1B
- Schierholtz RF
- Castro SS
- Valbuena 3B
- Castillo C
- Barney 2B
- E. Jackson P
What to Watch For:
- John: The baseball game. I'm looking forward to watching a game without worrying about anyone getting traded. Between the Garza and Soriano sagas, I've had to keep one eye on the game and one eye out for trade news. That said, watch the Cubs do this to me again.
- Felzz: Darwin Barney. The "Purple evolutionist" hasn't been himself either at the plate or in the field. Usually buckles up and fixes it though. Here's to a key RBI hit as well as a run saving play...
- Tom: Junior Lake. Keith Law's fav player!
Filed under: Preview and Game Thread