Alfonso Soriano to Yankees a done deal: reports
The slow-developing offensive addition of Alfonso Soriano has been completed.
The trade has been reported by multiple media reports.
Soriano will be in his second tenure with the Yankees after starting his career in the Bronx. He was signed from Japan in 1998 and made his major league debut one year later. He played in just 31 games combined in the Yankees’ World Series seasons of 1999 and 2000. But he made his ascension to starter at second base in 2001 and started 156 games.
With the Yankees desperately in need of a power bat, they returned to Soriano. He is due the remainder of $18 million this season and $18 million next season. According to reports, the Yankees will pick up around $8 million of the remaining money. The move will not cost them any of their top prospects.
Soriano is batting .254 with 17 home runs and 51 RBIs in 94 games for the Cubs. Reports indicate he will split time between left field and designated hitter.
Soriano became a fan favorite on the Yankees as a homegrown talent in the mold of championship-winning veterans Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada and others.
He hit a home run in the eighth inning of the 2001 World Series which appeared to be the game winner until Mariano Rivera blew the save in the ninth on a bloop single by Luis Gonzalez. Soriano never got his title, appearing in the World Series twice in 2001 and 2003.
It was the 2003 postseason that brought out complaints from fans and eventually led to his trade. He was 16-for-71 (.225) with 26 strikeouts in the 2003 playoffs and often looked lost at the plate, swinging at breaking balls in the dirt. Soriano posted tremendous regular seasons in 2002 (39 homers, 41 steals) and 2003 (38 homers, 35 steals), though.
When third baseman Aaron Boone, the hero of the 2003 ALCS against Boston, tore his ACL in an offseason basketball game it opened the door to Soriano being traded to Texas for Alex Rodriguez.
Now he returns to the Yankees largely as a replacement for the waning right-handed power of the injured Rodriguez.
Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports.